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Belgian Tripel Belgian Trippel (2006 World Beer Cup Gold Medal: Dragonmead Final Absolution clone)

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Elkaybay

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1030 seems so high even when severely underpitching. The kind of reading you'd get from a refractometer at these levels of alcohol :)
 

HighOnLife

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I've had good luck getting some of my higher OG beers to finish lower by using a beer belt or any other available method to raise the temperature. My last Belgian I finished it off by taking it up to 79 degrees and got it down to 1.015 which is a decent number for one of these high alcohol beers. Not perfect but not too sweet to drink.
 

fun4stuff

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I brewed this back on 6/4/15 and just finally have this kegged up. I'm sorry to report that this might very well be the worst brew I've made in the 3-4 years I've been brewing. I take all of the blame myself though. I couldn't get this to ferment much farther than 1.030, and went through about 3 different smack packs in the process. This beer is full of off flavors and I'm sure it's due to the yeast.

I barrel aged this for a few months in a bourbon barrel, so you definitely get a lot of bourbon, but that's followed by a very intense banana flavor. I'm just not a big fan. Fortunately, I've only got about 3 gallons, but I still don't see this keg getting kicked anytime soon :( I just can't bring myself to dump it...
I too have had success with getting bigger beers to finish by warming to 1-2 over highest recommended temp. Usually do it after a couple days right when fermentation starts to slow.

But 1.030 sounds way too high. Like an error with your hydrometer, using a refractometer (without using correction factor to take into account alcohol), or your mash temp was too high.
 

rbach2

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Brewed 3-weeks ago. OG of 1.084 on a scaled down 4.5 gallon batch (only had a 5-gallon carboy open). Fermented at 66-68 for the first 5 days and moved upstairs to a closet to bring temp up to 72. 2L starter tore through this and ended up at 1.010. I'm going to leave it for another week and then keg. Enjoying the gravity reading sample right now. Awesome recipe! Only regret is not waiting for one of my 6g carboys to open up so I could do a larger batch. I think I'll brew up another batch in the next couple weeks and bottle. This keg will likely blow fairly quickly after conditioning for a few weeks.
 

HiImBrian

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1030 seems so high even when severely underpitching. The kind of reading you'd get from a refractometer at these levels of alcohol :)
If you're assuming that I'm trying to take a gravity reading using a refractometer, you are incorrect sir. Refractometers will not give an accurate FG due to the presence of alcohol. I took this reading using a hydrometer. I'm not sure if I made a bad starter or what, but I threw another 2 smack packs at it and would get some activity for roughly a day and then nothing.

I've had good luck getting some of my higher OG beers to finish lower by using a beer belt or any other available method to raise the temperature. My last Belgian I finished it off by taking it up to 79 degrees and got it down to 1.015 which is a decent number for one of these high alcohol beers. Not perfect but not too sweet to drink.
Yea I tried warming this up a bit, but nowhere near 79. I need to put together a fermentation chamber so that I can regulate my temps a bit better. I currently have basement temp (cooler) and main floor temp (warmer) ha!

I too have had success with getting bigger beers to finish by warming to 1-2 over highest recommended temp. Usually do it after a couple days right when fermentation starts to slow.

But 1.030 sounds way too high. Like an error with your hydrometer, using a refractometer (without using correction factor to take into account alcohol), or your mash temp was too high.
I'm taking my readings with a hydrometer that is very much calibrated.

This beer has quite a few off flavors as well. Bottom line is this one just didn't turn out. No need is a whole bunch of people tossing out ways to remedy the beer at this point. Maybe I'll brew it another time.
 

paguy

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O.G. was at 1.080, F.G. 1.008. Too dry? Used WLP 500

Thoughts?
 

COBrewMan72

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Not too dry. You don't want a tripel to be sweet. Sounds like you better be careful with this brute @ roughly 9.8% abv...sounds like it should be tasty. Let us know how it comes out
 

paguy

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Not too dry. You don't want a tripel to be sweet. Sounds like you better be careful with this brute @ roughly 9.8% abv...sounds like it should be tasty. Let us know how it comes out
Thanks for the reply. Seemed like everyone else was finishing so much higher. I was afraid I may get poor results. I tried some today, it was ok but still very green as its only 2 weeks old. I will let you know how it turns out.
 

fun4stuff

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Thanks for the reply. Seemed like everyone else was finishing so much higher. I was afraid I may get poor results. I tried some today, it was ok but still very green as its only 2 weeks old. I will let you know how it turns out.
No, I kind of wish mine got that low. Did you do all grain?
 

COBrewMan72

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Higher abv doesn't automatically = better brew. Drinking a pint of rubbing alcohol doesn't sound real tasty to me. I did the extract version, which was my 3rd batch ever, a couple years back. I think mine finished out slightly lower than yours (about 9.5%, I don't have access to my brew notes currently). It took 3 weeks to carb up in the bottle and several months in the bottle to really hit its stride. As is always the case, being patient is the HARDEST part of brewing. Give it some time for the yeast to clean it up a bit and crack one (or 3) from time to time to see how it changes until it's where you are happy with it.
 

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I'm about to transfer this to my secondary. I made a 3 gallon batch, the only changes being Fuggle instead of Goldings (HB shop was out) and 2 oz of Carapils for head retention. Tasting it, it's already quite good. I do have a couple of questions/ideas. Please note that I only brewed 3 gallons as this is my first beer, I'm more of a cider guy normally. I have the ingredients for a second 3 gallon batch, which I will start shortly.

1. Could I, or should I, put new wort on my yeast cake if I'm trying to make the same kind of beer? I had a stuck fermentation at about 1.050 with this which I remedied with some heat, aeration, and yeast energizer. It's now sitting at 1.014. My thought is that this would be like a super starter, I've read about it being done with other beers, but I'm not sure if there's something about higher gravity beers that makes this a bad idea.
2. If I wanted a lighter mouth feel, would subbing out some malt extract for white sugar be a good idea? The flavor is wonderful, I'd just like something a bit lighter.
3. If I reduce the bittering hops some, should I increase the 3min addition?
 

bolus14

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1. Normal advice is that you shouldn't repitch with yeast from higher abv brews. My experience and from others postings here and on other forums many have done it and have no issues. I have read that Stone collects yeast from one of their beers that's over 7%, gives the best mix of yeast, healthy, low floc, high floc, etc. Belgian strains also tend to be different than a lot of other strains, they do well at higher temps, can under pitch and many still chew through wort, etc. If it were me I'd pitch away, some will agree and others will disagree.
2. If you want lighter mouthfeel swapping some sugar in place of some of the LME will do it, just plug numbers into a calculator to estimate the OG for the amounts you're swapping.
3. No reason to increase the 3 min addition unless you want more flavor. If you just want it less bitter, lower the first addition and keep the rest the same.
 

jmill

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Brewed the AG version of this today. Looking forward to tasting this once fermentation is finished in a few weeks. Yeast starter with the WLP500 smelled amazing.
 

VasDeferensly

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So I bottled a few weeks ago and finally cracked one open. Holy crap is this good. I'll be brewing it again shortly because I want some to age properly. FG for my two 3 gallon batches were 1.014 and 1.008.

The only issue I have with my batch is it tastes a bit hot, but it's 9%. I'm assuming some of that alcohol heat will age out, even still this is amazing.
 

Hop_Warrior

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Question about IBU and hops....

I'm new to all grain, but eager to learn.

The original all recipe is as follows -


I've stuck this into BeerSmith -


IBU's seem way too low. The recipe says 1.8oz of Hallertauer at 4.5 Alpha should be 29 IBU.

To get the IBU up to the recommended ~22IBU, I have to bump the Hallertauer up to 120grams.

This seems way too much

How do I fix it?
 

Elkaybay

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Your first picture shows a total IBU of 29.7 + 3.9 + 1.7 = 35.3 IBUs
The second shows a completely different (lower) number. Have you saved the recipe? Otherwise it could be a bug in your beersmith.

Question about IBU and hops....

I'm new to all grain, but eager to learn.

The original all recipe is as follows -


I've stuck this into BeerSmith -


IBU's seem way too low. The recipe says 1.8oz of Hallertauer at 4.5 Alpha should be 29 IBU.

To get the IBU up to the recommended ~22IBU, I have to bump the Hallertauer up to 120grams.

This seems way too much

How do I fix it?
 

fun4stuff

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Your first picture shows a total IBU of 29.7 + 3.9 + 1.7 = 35.3 IBUs
The second shows a completely different (lower) number. Have you saved the recipe? Otherwise it could be a bug in your beersmith.
Agreed, something not right with your calculations there..... and don't sweat a difference of 10-15 IBUs too much. You can't reliably taste 10 ibu difference and there is a lot of fudge in not only the ibu calculations but also in the estimation of ibu of the hops you're using.
 

SnatchAdams

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Sorry for the questions, but this is my first AG.

So I should do a 5 gallon strike, followed by 5 gallon sparge?

Also, the guy at the local shop recommended a longer mash, 90 minutes? Stick to the 60 minutes or take his advice?
 
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fun4stuff

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Sorry for the questions, but this is my first AG.

So I should do a 5 gallon strike, followed by 5 gallon sparge?

Also, the guy at the local shop recommended a longer mash, 90 minutes? Stick to the 60 minutes or take his advice?
I'd do it all grain biab- you'll thank me later. There is no reason to do traditional AG anymore (as detailed in Other threads)- traditional all grain is a equivalent of using a flip phone these days. Use an extra pound of the base grain (13.8 lbs pilsner) to compensate for efficiency loss since this is your first time.

You will have to start with more than 5 gallons because you lose water from evaporation during the boil and from grain absorption. You can probably assume an boil off rate of 1-1.5 gallons per hour for your first brew, but keep track of your pre and post volume so you can calculate your boil off rate specific to your pot that you can use for your next brew.

Use this link to figure out water volume to start with:

https://pricelessbrewing.github.io/BiabCalc/

I usually do a 90 min mashes with biab. Not sure it matters- people get by with much shorter mashes, but certainly doesn't hurt.

The other advice I can give you regarding biab is to squeeze the bag like it owes you money. A good way is to use two nested 5 gallon buckets with holes drilled in the bottom and sides of inner bucket so as bag is squeeze wort falls into bottom bucket. You won't need to sparge if you use a pound more of base grain and you squeeze the bag good enough.

You only need one vial of yeast if you're making a starter. Google "yeast calculator" and use one of them to see how to make the starter. 1 vial of yeast would probably work, but would not be optimal.

https://www.homebrewtalk.com/showthread.php?t=233289
 

mclaughlindw4

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Sorry for the questions, but this is my first AG.

So I should do a 5 gallon strike, followed by 5 gallon sparge?

Also, the guy at the local shop recommended a longer mash, 90 minutes? Stick to the 60 minutes or take his advice?
Knowing your setup would be helpful. I recommend the beersmith software for beggining all grain. You'll want to get a handle on your boil off rate, efficiency, dead volume, etc. This will determine how much volume you need pre-boil. Which will determine how much you should mash and sparge with. I really think getting the software and playing around with it is a great way to learn all grain. There is a free trial option I think.

As far as mash time goes. 90 min won't hurt, but might not be necessary. I've noticed with belgian beer recipes more often they call for 90 min mash. Not sure why though. Might be the lower mash Temps work a little slower, so 90 minutes helps ensure complete conversion.
 

SnatchAdams

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Thank so for the help!

I'm using a 10 gallon cooler tun and a 5 gallon kettle for a batch sparge.

I have the extra grains so I'll go for adding them in as well.
 

mclaughlindw4

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Thank so for the help!

I'm using a 10 gallon cooler tun and a 5 gallon kettle for a batch sparge.

I have the extra grains so I'll go for adding them in as well.
I have a round igloo cooler tun. Just subtract grain absorption and dead space if needed (mine is .5 gallons). And mash/sparge to get what you need preboil. I try to work it out so I am draining equal volumes from the mash and the batch sparge. So typically my mash is around 5.5 gallons and my sparge is around 4. That gets me about 7 or 8 preboil and around 6 post boil. It will take you a couple goes to get it dialed in on your system.
 

ClemTiger0408

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I'd do it all grain biab- you'll thank me later. There is no reason to do traditional AG anymore (as detailed in Other threads)- traditional all grain is a equivalent of using a flip phone these days. Use an extra pound of the base grain (13.8 lbs pilsner) to compensate for efficiency loss since this is your first time.

You will have to start with more than 5 gallons because you lose water from evaporation during the boil and from grain absorption. You can probably assume an boil off rate of 1-1.5 gallons per hour for your first brew, but keep track of your pre and post volume so you can calculate your boil off rate specific to your pot that you can use for your next brew.

Use this link to figure out water volume to start with:

https://pricelessbrewing.github.io/BiabCalc/

I usually do a 90 min mashes with biab. Not sure it matters- people get by with much shorter mashes, but certainly doesn't hurt.

The other advice I can give you regarding biab is to squeeze the bag like it owes you money. A good way is to use two nested 5 gallon buckets with holes drilled in the bottom and sides of inner bucket so as bag is squeeze wort falls into bottom bucket. You won't need to sparge if you use a pound more of base grain and you squeeze the bag good enough.

You only need one vial of yeast if you're making a starter. Google "yeast calculator" and use one of them to see how to make the starter. 1 vial of yeast would probably work, but would not be optimal.

https://www.homebrewtalk.com/showthread.php?t=233289

I don't love this post and I know it could open up a huge debate. But to say the "traditional" method of all grain is like a flip phone is somewhat disingenuous. I went from BIAB to a 10 gallon Igloo mash tun after a year of doing BIAB.

BIAB is a great way to enter all grain since the equipment requirements are much less and process is easier, however, the trade off is BIAB is kind of a pain.

With BIAB, in order to have a half decent efficiency (I know this doesn't matter a ton) I had make sure the LHBS double crushed my grain, do a 90 minute mash, stir the crap out of the mash every 20 minutes, pull out my ladder from storage so I can set up a pulley, and then squeeze the ever living daylights out of an extremely hot and heavy bag.

Now, I can single crush my grains, do a 60 minute mash, and simply drain the wort from the mash tun into the kettle. The time is about the same but the work is way less and I improved my efficiency by about 6 percentage points. And all I needed was about $60 to build a mash tun (I still use a bag for the filter instead of a false bottom).

My only point here is that BIAB is a different method for mashing than traditional but I wouldn't say its better or worse. For me, like I said, I did BIAB for more than a year and then switched to using a mash tun and haven't once looked back.
 

andrewmaixner

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I don't love this post and I know it could open up a huge debate. But to say the "traditional" method of all grain is like a flip phone is somewhat disingenuous. I went from BIAB to a 10 gallon Igloo mash tun after a year of doing BIAB.

BIAB is a great way to enter all grain since the equipment requirements are much less and process is easier, however, the trade off is BIAB is kind of a pain.

With BIAB, in order to have a half decent efficiency (I know this doesn't matter a ton) I had make sure the LHBS double crushed my grain, do a 90 minute mash, stir the crap out of the mash every 20 minutes, pull out my ladder from storage so I can set up a pulley, and then squeeze the ever living daylights out of an extremely hot and heavy bag.

Now, I can single crush my grains, do a 60 minute mash, and simply drain the wort from the mash tun into the kettle. The time is about the same but the work is way less and I improved my efficiency by about 6 percentage points. And all I needed was about $60 to build a mash tun (I still use a bag for the filter instead of a false bottom).

My only point here is that BIAB is a different method for mashing than traditional but I wouldn't say its better or worse. For me, like I said, I did BIAB for more than a year and then switched to using a mash tun and haven't once looked back.
Hm, interesting. I went the other way, now using eBIAB. I crush at .045, mash for 45min with two quick stirs, spend 5 minutes to do a pulley hoist / squeeze / pour 1 gallon of water over it / squeeze again, and I get 70 to 80% efficiency depending on gravity. I really like the reduction in equipment space.
 

thadeus_d3

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I finally got around to brewing a 10g batch of this today. Man, there was a lot of trub, but I hit all my numbers and it all went into the fermenter. Can't wait to try this next year.
 

Oldskewl

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Does anyone have any recommendations for a water profile for this beer? I plan to brew it sometime this month. I assume a target PH of 5.4?
 

Oldskewl

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Most people seem to be adding it around the 10 minute mark. Adding it too early in the boil can cause it to burn in the bottom of the kettle.

Just a word of caution to future brewers, watch the AA% of your hops. This is an older recipe and hops vary from year to year. The Hallertau and Saaz hops I just purchased from More Beer are 2.5% and 2.2% respectively. Which is considerably less(around to 1/2 to 2/3 the AA%) than the AG recipe on page 7. I plan to brew tomorrow night so I need to move my bittering addition back to about 70-75 minutes to increase my IBUs. Probably move my 3 min to 5 min also.
 

Oldskewl

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I brewed the AG version on PG.7 over the week-end BIAB. For some reason I missed my OG by a mile. I'm usually within a couple points and average about 80% brewhouse efficiency. My pre-boil gravity was 1.056 and my final gravity with candi syrup additions was 1.080. I'm guessing conversion may not have been complete. I mashed for 60 minutes with a stir at the 30 minute mark and the 60 minute mark. It's the same process I usually use and have conversion by the 45-50 minute mark. Then the last screw up was I pitched my yeast at 65 degrees and put it in my fermentation fridge. I set the temp for 66 degrees on my STC-1000. I came down Saturday morning and the STC-1000 is reading 45 degrees. I forgot to push the power button on the STC-1000 which sets the temp when you change it. So I put my yeast to sleep for about a day. Its been bubbling away pretty steady for the last 2 days. Lets hope those yeast have enough O2 to take it down into the 1.016 range. Fingers crossed.
 

Oldskewl

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Good news! I checked the FG last night and even with putting the yeast to sleep with a cold ferm chamber, I am at 1.010. So I am happy with a 9% Tripel. I plan on bottling tomorrow night.
 

stever1000

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Can I sub the styrian goldings with EK goldings without a noticeable difference?
 
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