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1st Batch - Hefeweizen questions about bottling and conditioning

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darkstar145

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I am 7 days into my first batch of beer, it went into the primary last Saturday. It fermented very aggressively in the first 2 days and appears to be ready to bottle. I need to point out a few things. I made a few noob mistakes. I dropped the hydrometer into my carboy after I pitched my yeast. Since there was a bit of foam my reading wasn't exact. I estimate that it was around 1040 to 1045. That may not be correct since the gravity of the can of 4LBS extract should have been 1032-1036 + the 3.3LBS of unhopped extract should have been 24.5. Those together equal 1056.5.

The activity has mellowed out and my hydrometer has not moved since Thursday. Currently it sits at around 1010. I know that weizens should be consumed relatively young but I am uncertain about a few things.

The recipe was this 4LBS of EDME prehopped Wheat beer extract. 2LBS of American wheat extract which is 60% wheat 40% barley, and Wyeast 3068.

My questions are these.

Its been 7 days and the brew fermenting wise seems to be ready. Should I bottle it now or wait another week for everything to settle?

Second once bottled how long should I let it sit at room temperature, and how long should I refrigerate it before drinking.

Thanks inadvance, I have learned so much from these forums already!

Cheers,

Jon
 

NitrouStang96

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I second these questions. I have a batch that I pitched 15 days ago, and I'm thinking of bottling in a few days. Currently crash cooling in secondary.

darkstar- For what its worth, my original SG was 1.058 and final was 1.018
 

homebrewer_99

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OK, your estimates are probably not far off.

Chances are the attenuation of the yeast has an average of 75% (which is what I always use as a guideline). Once you brews OG has dropped 75% then it's done.

If your OG was 1.045 (use only the last 2 digits for this)...45 / 4 = 11.25. If your FG is now 10 (1.010) then it's done and ready to bottle.


NitrouStang96: Since you OG was 58, 58 / 4 = 14.5. Since yours is 18 it's not ready yet. Crash cooling is going to make the yeast go dormant. You could bring it back into a warmer room to finish fermenting.

If you bottled at 18 and added priming sugar then placed the bottles in a warmer room for conditiioning you could be headed towards bottle grenades, at least lots of foaming and gushers.
 

NitrouStang96

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It sat at 18 for four days so I went to secondary, and what's the 58/4=14.5 business?


EDIT:
You got me worried, so I went outside and checked the SG, and interestingly enough it's at 1.015 - I'm guessing it finished out in its 5.5 days of secondary at 67 degrees. I moved it outside today and it's only down to 64 so far, but I hope it's cooler in the morning.

I'm still wondering about your dividing by 4 bit, though.



Sorry bout the hijack, darkstar.
 

homebrewer_99

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NitrouStang96 said:
It sat at 18 for four days so I went to secondary, and what's the 58/4=14.5 business?...I'm still wondering about your dividing by 4 bit...
Simple math really, dividing the last 2 numbers of the OG by 4 gives me an estimated FG...read as 25% of the OG. ;)

1.058, or just 58 divided by 4 equals 14.5 (read as .145 and drop the 3rd digit) to read 1.014. This is what your FG should be with a yeast's attenuation of 75%. :D
 
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darkstar145

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homebrewer_99 said:
If your OG was 1.045 (use only the last 2 digits for this)...45 / 4 = 11.25. If your FG is now 10 (1.010) then it's done and ready to bottle.
Thats great, well I figured that much....my questions are more about the conditioning and refrigeration part of the deal.

Its a hefeweizen and I was wondering how long I should leave the bottles at room temp. My first guess from my research would be that after priming is complete around 7-10 days its drinkable.

Letting it age will make no difference in taste right? Its a weizen and I should drink it young?

So my guestimation is 7-10 at room temp to prime and them 2-3 days minimum in the fridge and mmmmmm drink up!!!!


Correct me if I'm wrong.
 

NitrouStang96

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homebrewer_99 said:
This is what your FG should be with a yeast's attentuation of 75%. :D
I can do math too ;) , but this is what I'm getting at. Is a yeast's attenuation always 75%? Learn something new every day! :)

That is a valuable fact that I still had not read here, nor in the wiki.
 

homebrewer_99

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NitrouStang96 said:
I can do math too ;) , but this is what I'm getting at. Is a yeast's attenuation always 75%? Learn something new every day! :)

That is a valuable fact that I still had not read here, nor in the wiki.
Sorry about the math. I knew you guys were smarter than that...just trying to fill in any gaps...;)

No, yeast attenuation is not always 75%. The yeast attenuation is found on the label or brochure.

For instance, White Labs brochure WLP 300/Hefeweizen Ale says attenuation is 72-76%, WLP 380/Hefeweizen IV Ale says 73-80%.

Basically, if your FG is within that range you're good to go.

I just use 75% as a mean percentage (it's just easier/quicker to divide by 4). :D
 
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darkstar145

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Well my question never did get answered, and yes you did do a good job of hijacking my thread NitrouStang96
 

NitrouStang96

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I'm sorry!

If I can offer any help with your two questions, here goes -
It has been 16 days since I pitched my yeast. I believe it is fully attenuated. I tasted it last night after getting another gravity reading just to make sure, and it was delicious. Based on the info in this thread and from what I've read about hefe's, I think I will bottle tonight, let condition for a couple weeks, then refrigerate and immediately drink when it's cold.

So I'd recommend you give it at least another 5 days before bottling, depending on your gravity readings. Couple weeks of conditioning, then drink. Why don't you start them conditioning, and every few days stick one in the fridge and check its carbonation and how it tastes? That part you can figure out easily just by testing them, so the main thing here is just how much longer you should keep it in the carboy, and I'd say it needs just a bit more time.
 

VA Brew

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I just transfered my first hefe with WL300 yeast to secondary on Saturday night. It was fermenting in primary for 8 days about 7 days since major activity. I checked it today (sunday) and noticed a small foam head being created. I am hoping that the fermentation is just on the slow side. I did not take any gravity reading but would probably recommend that you give it a few more days to ensure fermentation is done. I plan to let my hefe sit in secondary for at least 2 weeks before bottling. I'm not quite sure what you guys mean by drinking a hefe young? Please elaborate (not trying to steal your thread) but it sounds dangerous to bottle before all fermentation is done (if that is what a young hefe is) and would defeat the whole purpose of priming, right?
 
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