Adding sugar to primary?

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rockdemon

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I feel like trying this method with a belgian tripel this weekend. Adding the sugar to the primary instead of during the boil. But i have some questions:

1. How do I calculate how much yeast i want? I will be adding them to a wort with much lower OG due to the abscence of the sugar and then the yeast will multiply before i add the sugar.

2. When should i add the sugar?

3. Im thinking of just bioling the sugar in water and then cool it and carefully dump it into the bucket. is that the right way of doing it?
 

VulgarCelt

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I always add my sugar to primary for my Belgians, candi or table. It really helps dry them out.

In the past I had problems with high finishing gravities. I read in Brew Like a Monk (or maybe one of Fix's books) that yeast like to eat the sucrose first as its easier for them to "digest". Once they start doing that they get a bit lazy and don't process maltose as efficiently, hence my higher finishing gravities. By adding in the sucrose after they have munched on maltose for a bit you can help avoid this problem.

Once the krausen begins to drop a bit I simply add the sugar to water and boil it for a bit. After carefully cooling it to avoid infection I pitch it into primary. And man it will take back off like a rocket.

I use BeerSmith2 for my recipes. When I build the recipe I build it with the sugar at flameout. That way I can use the starter volume calculator to determine my pitch rate. I usually slightly underpitch as well but that's another thread...
 

Homercidal

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IMO you pitch the amount of yeast you will need for the planned ABV. Let them grow and get going good and hard on the wort, then add the sugar at the height of fermentation.

You could cook the sugar in water if you want to. It will dilute the beer slightly. You could probably just add the sugar as is. I think dry sugar is antibacterial by nature, so it should be safe.
 
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rockdemon

rockdemon

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I always add my sugar to primary for my Belgians, candi or table. It really helps dry them out.

In the past I had problems with high finishing gravities. I read in Brew Like a Monk (or maybe one of Fix's books) that yeast like to eat the sucrose first as its easier for them to "digest". Once they start doing that they get a bit lazy and don't process maltose as efficiently, hence my higher finishing gravities. By adding in the sucrose after they have munched on maltose for a bit you can help avoid this problem.

Once the krausen begins to drop a bit I simply add the sugar to water and boil it for a bit. After carefully cooling it to avoid infection I pitch it into primary. And man it will take back off like a rocket.

I use BeerSmith2 for my recipes. When I build the recipe I build it with the sugar at flameout. That way I can use the starter volume calculator to determine my pitch rate. I usually slightly underpitch as well but that's another thread...


IMO you pitch the amount of yeast you will need for the planned ABV. Let them grow and get going good and hard on the wort, then add the sugar at the height of fermentation.

You could cook the sugar in water if you want to. It will dilute the beer slightly. You could probably just add the sugar as is. I think dry sugar is antibacterial by nature, so it should be safe.
Sounds easy enough! Ill wait for the first days hi krausen to calm down and then add the sugar(2-3 days maybe). Ill boil it in just a little bit of water just to be safe. And pitch yeast as if I would have added the sugar in the boil.

thanks!
 

PDevlin75

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Pardon me while I piggyback this thread, but I find myself in a similar boat...

I just brewed up a tripel over the weekend, and I'm planning to add honey to the primary instead of sugar.

With that in mind, I already know that my wort did not hit the expected OG because I haven't added the honey yet. For what I started with, I had a decent OG reading. Does one just typically assume that the OG will be what it should have been, if the honey were added to the boil?

I don't see much of a point in checking the gravity again when I add the honey, because the yeast is already doing its job… So I assume I just have to hope for the best… I know it's fermenting, and I'm not terribly worried that I'm going make a bad batch - I'm just curious as to how (if at all) this affects your ABV calculations… I've only been brewing for a little over a year, so I still consider myself a beginner, and I'd like to be able to see if I'm getting reasonably predictable results… Although, I'm aware that this may not be a reliable situation for gauging my process.

Thanks,
-Pete
 
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rockdemon

rockdemon

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Pardon me while I piggyback this thread, but I find myself in a similar boat...

I just brewed up a tripel over the weekend, and I'm planning to add honey to the primary instead of sugar.

With that in mind, I already know that my wort did not hit the expected OG because I haven't added the honey yet. For what I started with, I had a decent OG reading. Does one just typically assume that the OG will be what it should have been, if the honey were added to the boil?

I don't see much of a point in checking the gravity again when I add the honey, because the yeast is already doing its job… So I assume I just have to hope for the best… I know it's fermenting, and I'm not terribly worried that I'm going make a bad batch - I'm just curious as to how (if at all) this affects your ABV calculations… I've only been brewing for a little over a year, so I still consider myself a beginner, and I'd like to be able to see if I'm getting reasonably predictable results… Although, I'm aware that this may not be a reliable situation for gauging my process.

Thanks,
-Pete
I guess the OG would be the same if you add the sugar/honey during the boil or afterwards. Its still the same amount of sugar, just added at different time. Right?
 

benzesp

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I've been adding and additional 1.5 lbs of piloncillo in primary after 6 days and pitching a smaller active 750ml starter. The **** goes bonkers. Can definitely get into barley wine territory adding sugar like this.
 

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I don't see much of a point in checking the gravity again when I add the honey, because the yeast is already doing its job… So I assume I just have to hope for the best… I know it's fermenting, and I'm not terribly worried that I'm going make a bad batch - I'm just curious as to how (if at all) this affects your ABV calculations… I've only been brewing for a little over a year, so I still consider myself a beginner, and I'd like to be able to see if I'm getting reasonably predictable results… Although, I'm aware that this may not be a reliable situation for gauging my process.
No I wouldn't recheck a gravity either, it would be hard to get it properly mixed so you'll likely be more accurate calculating. Just add the sugar contribution to your measured OG and use that number to calculate your ABV. You just need to also adjust for any volume added with the sugar.
 

HausBrauerei_Harvey

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For my triple and quad I pitched based on the OG going into the primary before the sugar additions. By the time your adding your sugar when the krausen is dropping the yeast has replicated a ton and are ready to feast on the nice dessert of simple sugars. I also read 'brew like a monk' and this is the preferred method because as mentioned earlier the theory is if you give yeast the simple sugars early they will be lazy and not hit the longer chain stuff as hard, thus raising your FG.
 

sandyeggoxj

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I am doing this right now for a dipa. I split my simple sugar into 3 additions and added it every 24 hours starting 72 hours after active fermentation. I brought about 10oz of water to a boil and then dropped the heat off and slowly stirred the sugar in so it would melt. I brought it back up to 180-190 degrees and capped it off. I then went and dumped it in the fermenter after it cooled a bit. It was still warm but not boiling. 10oz of warm sugar into 11 gallons doesn't matter much. When I add the gravity points from the sugar I end up at 1.080. So for the sake of abv I use 1.080 number.
 

VulgarCelt

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Pardon me while I piggyback this thread, but I find myself in a similar boat...

I just brewed up a tripel over the weekend, and I'm planning to add honey to the primary instead of sugar.

With that in mind, I already know that my wort did not hit the expected OG because I haven't added the honey yet. For what I started with, I had a decent OG reading. Does one just typically assume that the OG will be what it should have been, if the honey were added to the boil?

I don't see much of a point in checking the gravity again when I add the honey, because the yeast is already doing its job… So I assume I just have to hope for the best… I know it's fermenting, and I'm not terribly worried that I'm going make a bad batch - I'm just curious as to how (if at all) this affects your ABV calculations… I've only been brewing for a little over a year, so I still consider myself a beginner, and I'd like to be able to see if I'm getting reasonably predictable results… Although, I'm aware that this may not be a reliable situation for gauging my process.

Thanks,
-Pete
Yes simply calculate as if you had added the sugar during boil. The sugar is all still there and the yeast is certainly going to eat it. What you are going to get is a much drier beer. I have never re-pitched at all. The yeast are past or well into their growth phase by the time this sugar add hits them. This is their desert for a job well done, lol.

Remember to shut those little buggers off when you get to your final gravity. I have had this method dry it all the way down before and 1.002 is a bit dry for a tripel, lol.

I really do suggest using some brewing software. I use BeerSmith2 which was like $20. It worth every penny and you can log all the calculations / observations easily.

With honey be aware that a fair amount of the sugars are non-fermentable. Which means you will end up with more residual sweetness than with straight sucrose. Not a bad thing at all, just a heads up. Honey is yummy...
 

PDevlin75

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I really do suggest using some brewing software. I use BeerSmith2 which was like $20. It worth every penny and you can log all the calculations / observations easily.
Ironically, brewing software is exactly what prompted this question! :drunk: I have been using Brew Pal (and just recently picked up BeerSmith2)… When I entered the fermentable ingredients, the only way I could list the honey as going into the primary, instead of the boil, was to add it as a "flavor". Doing this had no effect on the OG calculation.

I assumed that the late addition of honey still counted towards the overall fermentable sugar in the wort, and contributed to the overall OG… But not being able to account for that right away, when checking my gravity before pitching, left me wondering. So thanks for confirming my suspicions!

Using brewing software has prompted me to try to keep more accurate track of my process along the way. Starting to get into All-Grain, I'm now learning why and where I'm losing water along the way, and how that affects my gravity. So this tripel, while I'm sure it'll be just fine in the end, created a bit of a conundrum for me in regards to how to refine my process… No big deal though. There's always the next batch to practice on!

On a side note: Fermentation has been going quite well! I have the bucket in an upstairs hallway closet, with a blow-off tube into a 1 gallon glass jug. The rhythmic bubbling on the first day confused my wife, as she didn't know what was wrong with the pipes in our house! It was loud enough that I could hear it from downstairs! I added the honey after 4 days when the bubbling slowed. Fermentation has being going on for a week in total, and I can still hear the bubbling from down the hall in the middle of the night! As a result, I have decided to name this beer "Tell Tale Heart Honey Tripel"

Thanks, all!
-Pete
 

sandyeggoxj

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When I build a recipe in bs2 I add the simple sugars in to figure out my expected total og and final abv estimate. Then I zero out the line and use that new preboil and post boil og to figure out if I hit my numbers.

I have a dipa in the fermenter right now and it was at 1.010 yesterday on day 7. I added 8% turbinado sugar into the fermenter in 3 additions every 24 hours. With the sugar additions my og was 1.080 and now at 1.010. Yeast was wlp007 pitched at 1mil/ml/°p. I also added 10l of pure o2 through a .5 micron stone.
 

VulgarCelt

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On a side note: Fermentation has been going quite well! I have the bucket in an upstairs hallway closet, with a blow-off tube into a 1 gallon glass jug. The rhythmic bubbling on the first day confused my wife, as she didn't know what was wrong with the pipes in our house! It was loud enough that I could hear it from downstairs! I added the honey after 4 days when the bubbling slowed. Fermentation has being going on for a week in total, and I can still hear the bubbling from down the hall in the middle of the night! As a result, I have decided to name this beer "Tell Tale Heart Honey Tripel"
-Pete
I love it when it sounds like its going to take the lid off the bucket...which I have had happen, lol. Blow-off tubes are your best friend when brewing Belgians.

I love the name!

“Fill with mingled cream and amber,
I will drain that glass again.
Such hilarious visions clamber
Through the chamber of my brain —
Quaintest thoughts — queerest fancies
Come to life and fade away;
What care I how time advances?
I am drinking ale today.”

― Edgar Allan Poe
 
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