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Old 10-31-2012, 07:27 PM   #1
Oct 2012
Posts: 6

I bottled a Belgian Tripel right at 4 weeks ago, I made it from a kit (Midwest Supplies).

I opened up a bottle last night to see how things were coming along. It had very little carbonation and tasted very flat as a result. I know that a beer like this really needs a LOT of time in the bottles to fully develop. However, I was expecting it to be further along.

So, two questions:
1) is it normal for a Tripel to still be a long way from carbonated at 4 weeks?
2) I'm storing it in my basement, which is about 70*. I've heard Tripel's like warmer temperatures... should I bring it upstairs where it is a little warmer to try and speed up the carbonation?

Thanks for any help. (sorry if this thread is in the wrong forum)

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Old 10-31-2012, 07:48 PM   #2
beergolf's Avatar
Jan 2011
collingswood, nj
Posts: 6,038
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Sometimes higher gravity beers can take longer to carb up. If you used the right amount of priming sugar it will carb up.. A tripel will. benefit from aging anyway, so give it some more time.

12. oz or 22 oz bottles? Bombers can take longer to carb up.

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Old 10-31-2012, 07:59 PM   #3
Oct 2012
Posts: 6

They are 22oz bottles.

The directions said to put the priming sugar at the bottom of the bottling bucket and add the fermented beer on top. I forgot to do this, so I stirred the priming sugar into the beer before bottling. Any way this had an affect?

Also, should I move it to a warmer space?

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Old 10-31-2012, 08:14 PM   #4
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Sep 2011
St. Louis, MO
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It will carb if you give it enough time. And 70F is warm enough to carb bottles. I think revvy has a really cool graph he made to show the relationship between OG and time to carbonate. Also, when I first started I was an impatient fool. I even stirred the yeast in my bottles when I thought that they weren't carbonating. I don't know if it helped, but it made me feel better.

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Old 10-31-2012, 08:35 PM   #5
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Jan 2012
Rockville, MD
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if you stirred in the sugar sufficiently to distribute it throughout the beer, it shouldn't make a difference. it's preferable to put the sugar in the bucket first and transfer on top of it, since mixing can introduce more oxygen into the beer which isn't desirable, but mixing in the sugar should work fine (incidentally, did you boil it beforehand to sanitize it?)

big beers can take a long time to carb up, there's no way around that. warmth will help, so if upstairs is warmer you should move it up there. trippels really benefit from aging so you shouldn't be in a rush to get these carbed up anyways

related reading:
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Old 10-31-2012, 08:36 PM   #6
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Big beer, in a big bottle, think months, not weeks til it carbs.
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Old 10-31-2012, 08:39 PM   #7
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Feb 2012
Benidorm, Alicante/Spain
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Put your bottles in a box on forget about them for a couple of months.

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Old 11-01-2012, 12:55 AM   #8
Oct 2012
Posts: 6

Thanks for the replies everyone. I'm glad to hear everything is on schedule. I just need to keep waiting!

in response to sweetcell, I did sanitize the sugar by boiling it in water. Thanks for asking the question, cause I will probably make some of those mistakes along the way.

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Old 11-01-2012, 05:47 AM   #9
Nov 2012
Posts: 2

How long did you ferment? What strain of yeast did you use? and how much priming sugar did you put in?

A likely reason your beer is carbonating slowly is due to the high ABV of your tripel. Ethanol not only inhibits cell growth, but also represses glucose transport. As you know, glucose is converted to ethanol and co2 by yeast under anaerobic conditions. More alcohol=slower carbonation.

That being said, flocculation variations in yeast could also play a role in slow carbonation. Almost all brewing yeast strains have been selectively bred to flocculate (group together after fermentation and drop to the bottom of the fermenting vessel). Some do it better than others. If you left your beer in the primary for a month+ with no agitation and cold crashed your beer, there were less yeast cells in suspension- resulting in a possibly slower carbonation time. The depth of the racking cane during your transfer from fermentor to bottling bucket could also be a factor at play.

Mentioned by a previous poster, 22 oz bottles might take longer to carbonate, especially due to the high ABV. The yeast is working slower, and there is more H2O for the CO2 to react with in a 22 oz bottle.

I'd let it sit for a another month or two and see what happens.
Good luck

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