Added Fruit Juice To Saison Clone, Still Ferminting 3wks Later...

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Well-Known Member
Nov 17, 2009
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This is not my first time to the rodeo, and with over a couple of hundred batches brewing, thought I had seen most everything that could happen. Well, that just goes to show you! :)

Anyway, I added roughly 64 ounces of apple juice mixed with a cherry juice concentrate -- both "all natural" that I had pasteurized by bringing the mix up to 175°F and held for 10 minutes + 5 drops pectic enzyme to the start of the secondary fermentation. I figured the additional sugars would spike fermentation, which they did around 2-3 days. Things slowed down to a steady but very slow fermentation, which has yet to subside after 21 days at 72°F. Oddly, it ebbs and flows, so to speak. Some days the process will look done and I am tempted to measure the FG and call it a batch. Then the next morning, the steady stream of CO2 output will be back to what it was before.

The latter is odd and something I have not noticed in the past, but the long term continuation is also new.

I tasted the brew and it is not infected so far as I can tell, and besides, I am pretty careful anyway and have not had an infection of any note since Batch 2 -- thirty years ago this year.

Sooooo....while I am not exactly "concerned" or impatient, I'm wondering if any of y'all have ever seen this, and if you think it might be a good idea to dose the batch with a packet of champagne yeast and really amp up the cell count so the new and fresh beasties can eat up and finish up this batch. I'm not impatient, but danged if I wouldn't like my space back in my fermentation freezer to get new brews in it!

Thanks for your thoughts and sorry in advance for the long message.

What yeast are you using? Some of the Saison yeasts (like white labs 565) are notorious for taking forever to finish up. I'd break out the hydrometer and test the gravity to see if it's near your estimated FG. Then test it again 3 days later to see if it's steady (remember to adjust for temperature). Bubbles in the airlock don't necessarily mean fermentation is still happening. Only a steady gravity reading can bring confidence that your beer has finished fermenting.