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Old 04-15-2012, 01:51 AM   #1
sheamus81
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Default Using wlp500 and wlp550 for a belgian pale ale?

Had a quick question for you veterans. I have some wlp500 that I harvested from a Trappist ale kit I brewed. Now I'm about to brew a belgian pale ale with wlp550 and was wondering if pitching some of the 500 with the 550 would be a good idea?

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Old 04-15-2012, 07:36 AM   #2
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The 500 IMO will provide more of a true trappist characteristic. Personally my go-to Belgian yeast from WL is the WLP 530, personally, and again IMO, 530 provides a great Belgiany characteristic that is unmatched it is the Westmalle strain, and it is delectable.

So in summary, stick with the 500 if you can. If you are bent on using the 550, try it alone, and taste the difference, perhaps you'll like it. I wouldn't blend it, unless you really want to experiment, and have a good idea of the separate characteristics of each that you will be able to distinguish between.

Next Belgian, give the 530 a go, you will not be disappointed, I would suggest a Belgian Quad perhaps.

Good luck!

Cheers!

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Old 04-15-2012, 07:45 AM   #3
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The "stronger" of the two will be what the final beer tastes like

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Old 04-15-2012, 12:06 PM   #4
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I'll agree with Schnitzengiggle that the 530 would be better. But the 530 requires a temp of 68 degrees, where as the 550 likes it warmer around 73. I do know the 530 is very sensitive to heat and will give you off flavors if it gets to warm.

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Old 04-15-2012, 12:40 PM   #5
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The above post hit it right on the head. Depends what flavor profile you are going for. If you like bananas and fruity flavors then use 500 (the Chimay strain is notorious for banana flavor) and let the temp get in the low to mid 70s. But if you have a way to control ferm temps then you can use most of the Belgian strains but keep them between 65-68. Most of the Belgian yeasts will tolerate higher temps well but some will give off higher esters compared to others. I've used 500, 530, 540, 550 and 570 many times without issues but they all have very different temp sensitivities and profiles. If you want less fruityness then 550 out of those 2 is a better choice.

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Old 04-15-2012, 03:16 PM   #6
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Thanks a lot guys. I really enjoy the flavor that I got from using 500. I think I'm gonna stick with the 550 so I can se what it will turn out like by itself. Also what commercial Belgian pale ale would u guys reccomend. Ive never tried a Belgian pale ale before?

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Old 04-15-2012, 04:52 PM   #7
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I like Flying Dog's Raging Bitch. It's more of an IPA at 60 IBUs and 8.3% ABV but they use Duvel yeast for that supposedly. WLP570. I'm brewing a clone of that tomorrow.

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Old 05-14-2012, 04:14 PM   #8
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IMHO Belgian pale ale is more like an English pale ale. It's an easy drinking session beer that is very balanced. Some fruity yeast character is OK but it should not be crazy fruity and the phenols should be keep to the bare minimum. Yeast character should be balanced with some hop bitterness and a smooth toasty malt flavor. No one flavor dominates and everything is balanced.

Go ahead and use 500 or 550 but I'd recommend fermenting in the lower to mid 60's to reduce the esters. WLP515 is a better choice to make a true to style Belgian Pale Ale. It's a MUCH cleaner yeast.

DeKoninick is a good example but may be hard to find. Blue moon makes a belgian pale that is a fair representation is much easier to find. I'm not saying the blue moon BPA is great but at least you can find it in the local supermarkets.

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Old 06-08-2012, 11:00 PM   #9
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Just finished a Pale Ale with WLP500, fermenting around 70 with no Banana esters. Very fruity aroma and a slight clove flavor.

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