888 RIS stuck ferment, or overwhelming the yeast?

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Well-Known Member
Dec 25, 2005
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Portland, OR
My batch of 888 RIS has, amongst other things, 14 lbs of LME I added to the boil. I made a yeast cake of WLP026 and dumped the wort right onto the cake, which took off immediately. My OG was 1.118. It's now a few weeks later, and it seems 'stalled' out at 1.038. That seems rather high to me still, and the apparant attenuation is 67%. I was hoping to get it down to at least 1.029 for aging.

My question is, I don't know if;

A)I should just leave it alone and rack it to the 5 gallon carboy for aging,

B)add champagne yeast to try and get the FG down some more because the ABV is at like 11% already, or

C).... dramatic pause... add a beano tablet. Everything I've read about beano says that it can take months for it to finally stop doing its thing, but with this beer it's going to age until August so I got time! :p

Recipe is as follows;

14.0 lbs. LME
3.00 lbs. Pale 2 row
1.25 lbs. Roasted Barley
1.00 lbs. Special B Malt
0.50 lbs. Chocolate malt light
0.33 lbs. CaraMunich Malt
0.33 lbs. Chocolate Malt
0.33 lbs. Crystal 120L
0.33 lbs. Crystal 75L

1.50 oz. Horizon 60 min.
1.00 oz. Goldings-E.K. 10 min.
1.50 oz. Goldings-E.K. 0 min.

And if this craps out on me, I'm never listening to you again MikeFlynn!!
I vote for B.

Beano does work, but it never stops & you'll end up with no body at all. It can be de-natured by heating to 56C (133F) for 15 minutes.
I vote that you do nothing as your beer is most likely fully attenuated. Think about those numbers and the yeast that you are using. If you wanted more fully attenuated beer, then less malt, higher temps and a different yeast are all in order. You can't really take back the malt, but I would suggest tasting the beer before you do anything to alter it. Too many brewers obsess over numbers without considering the product.
A) Leave it in the primary for 5-6 weeks then rack to a secondary and leave it age for a few months. Most of the 1.088 stouts with similar specialty grain bills are ending up in the upper 1.020s. Yours is considerably bigger so I would expect it to finish pretty big.
Like Aspera said, consider the taste more than the numbers.

Champagne yeast probably won't attenuate much more and I don't think I have heard a true success story from Beano. This is not a beer that needs to be dry!

Well I'm not going to be bottling this until the middle of July anyways, so aging it is not a problem. I wanted a few more points down just in case it decided it was going to start fermenting again a few months down the road. I tried a sample. It's got an alcohol aroma, but tastes like molasses wrapped in fireplace. Ohhhh yea this'll be a good sippin beer alright once it ages out. I think I'm going to take the lazy way out and do nothing at all with it.
agitate it a bit (no splashing) and rack it. it may drop a few points when it gets mixed into the secondary. You SHOULD get more attenuation out of WLP026 based on its profile...but considering the high amount of LME, you're probably done with your primary fermentation.
I did swirl it around a bit and waited a few days before posting, hoping that it was a matter of most of the yeast dropping out of suspension before I posted. Yea I think it's pretty much done, and I'm going to rack to the 5 gallon carboy next week.
Don't feel bad mine did the same thing..I just racked it over to secondary and going to leave it there a while..It did taste very good though, going to be hard to wait until 8-8-8.
I vote for racking off the cake, add 1/2tsp yeast nutrient, 1tsp yeast energizer, and pitch a couple packs of Nottinghams (22g). 67% is aweful low... Nottinghams should get you to ~75%. Thats what I did with first batch of Pistoles that I think I underpitched...it stopped at 73% (not all that bad).

Oh... next big arse brew... I'm going to steep my LME in with a pound of 6-row to help break down the sugars a little further. When you are adding in like 10+lbs of fermentables, 75% attenuation still leaves quite a bit of residual sugars. If you can bump that up a couple points it will make a huge difference in your brew.

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