Nottingham yeast attenuation and fermentation expectations with Imperial Stout

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Noob_Brewer

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So Ive done a good bit of searching on Nottingham yeast here as I've never used it myself. I will be brewing an imperial stout ~10% ABV with an OG of ~1.101 hopefully this weekend. While I normally use US05 for my imperial stouts and get ~70-72% attenuation, Im trying to anticipate what my attenuation would be with Nottingham instead. With my previous stouts using US05, Ive mashed for 90min at 150 and used a 2hr boil and got the ~70-72% attenuation. Given that Nottingham appears to have a WIDE range of attenuation (70-85%?), Im hoping for some opinions/experiences. If Notty will attenuate to over 80% given my stout mash and boil schedules, Im thinking of not mashing that low of a temp. Using the Lallemand calculator, its estimating I need ~23grams of Notty. Any opinions/experiences with this would be helpful for my planning.

From what Ive read, Nottingham is a good replacement for US05 being pretty neutral. I simply don't have US05 but got ahold of some Notty from a fellow home brewer. Ive also read that some people have gotten a tart flavor from Notty and that is what Id like to avoid so any advice on fermentation temps to yield a more neutral profile would also be appreciated.
 

AlexKay

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I’ve had Nottingham just rip through barleywines and imperial stouts. Last IS went from 1.112 to 1.017 (measured with a Tilt, so take the numbers with a big grain of salt.). Fermentation started in 4-5 hours and hit final gravity in 5 days. US05 can handle really high gravities, too, but it pokes along in comparison. All that said, I’d still do what you’re doing to get a highly fermentable wort; at that gravity, body and mouthfeel just aren’t going to be a problem. Mash high and you might have to chew it.

I’ve been happy with fermentation temperatures from 60 to 68 F and never got a lot of esters or fusels.

Oh, and I prefer the taste to US05, too.
 
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Noob_Brewer

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Thanks for your experiences. Dayum that’s 85% from 1.112 to 1.017. When I suggested to raise my mash temps I was only thinking to 152-153 the highest.

Appreciate the insight on ferm temp range as well.

Regarding the taste, everyone tells me to use an English yeast for more character but Nottingham (while English) is purported to be clean. You getting some English character out of it? Just curious why you liked the taste better

Edit: also agree that with this big of a beer I’m not sure a downward shift in FG would negatively impact the body/mouthfeel. I’m probably just overthinking it lol
 

BongoYodeler

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Great timing and similar as I'm currently putting a recipe together for an imperial stout, and was thinking of using a couple packets of Nottingham to ferment with. Mashing around 150° Beersmith has this going from 1.092 to 1.019, (9.8%). Planning on fermenting then transferring it to a keg to age for a year or so.
 

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I used two packs of Notty in a 5 gallon RIS last year. Got 12% ABV in about two weeks. I fermented it at 62-64 (beer temp, not ambient air temp), while the alcohol is present, it’s not fusel hot at all.

I’ll have to look at my notes to give you mash temp, OG and FG. Needless to say, it’s the yeast I’d use again for the same recipe.
 

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I found Nottingham to start fast, but take a while a while to tail of to a steady FG. Made a great Hazy IPA (6.6%) Imperial Amber (8.5%) and a Barleywine at 10% but took almost 4 weeks to fully attenuate at 10%. The Hazy was great right off the primary but the two higher ABV beers needed months to cool off and be drinkable. At 10% it rounded the corner at about a year. All were great down the road, just needed time.
 

jambop

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I find Notty to by far the fastest to finish my fermentation's usually five days max pitch to finish but the real bonus for me is the flocculation this yeast clears very quickly after the final gravity is reached. I bottle some of my beers and when I use Notty there is never any carry over when pouring the beer last night I had a bottle and I poured a 75cl bottle in three different pours and the yeast never carried into any of the three glasses. Verdant for example floats around so much I have to pour the beer into a jug first then fill individual glasses after that to avoid the yeast getting into the glasses it is such a sloppy flocculator.
 

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Thanks for your experiences. Dayum that’s 85% from 1.112 to 1.017. When I suggested to raise my mash temps I was only thinking to 152-153 the highest.

Appreciate the insight on ferm temp range as well.

Regarding the taste, everyone tells me to use an English yeast for more character but Nottingham (while English) is purported to be clean. You getting some English character out of it? Just curious why you liked the taste better

Edit: also agree that with this big of a beer I’m not sure a downward shift in FG would negatively impact the body/mouthfeel. I’m probably just overthinking it lol
If you want English taste and good attenuation, you can copitch Notty with a more characterfull yeast. The classic copitch which a lot of best bitter brewers used is Nottingham with Windsor.

If you are after fruity flavours you could copitch it with verdant, that works well, did that myself multiple times, also in a stout.

You can also use London ale, that's what I'm intending to do this weekend, so no first hand experience here but on its own I preferred London ale to Windsor.

Plenty of options! Notty terms to round out the edges of problematic yeasts. Long lag? Copitch notty. Yeasts usually allows down at the end and takes ages to finish? Notty, it's your turn! Low floculation? Notty ftw!
 

hottpeper13

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At 6 months it's ready to put on tap. 10% ABV, 81% ADF. Mashed at 148* for 60 min step to 162* for 30 min.
Pitched at 52* set to 59* for 5 days then step to 64* to finish. At this schedule I get no higher alcohols.

I always make a small beer and pitch the yeast cake when fermenting a beer 1.100 or higher. This one got 1/2 cake from a 5 gal pale ale.
 

Kickass

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I used two packs of Notty in a 5 gallon RIS last year. Got 12% ABV in about two weeks. I fermented it at 62-64 (beer temp, not ambient air temp), while the alcohol is present, it’s not fusel hot at all.

I’ll have to look at my notes to give you mash temp, OG and FG. Needless to say, it’s the yeast I’d use again for the same recipe.

My memory was a little off but here is my direct experience, from my notes, fermenting a RIS with Notty:

2 packs Notty into a 1.6L starter

Mash temp- 152 f
Mash length- 90 minutes
OG- 1.100
FG- 1.017
ABV- 11,9%
Ferm temp- 62-64f
Days from OG to FG- 7

It’s not overly hot. I like to ask people to estimate ABV before I tell them and I typically get a response of 8-10%.

I’ll sing Notty’s praises all day long.
 

seatazzz

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Nottingham has been my go-to for several years now; starts fast, ferments clean, and it does great in further generations if you're into saving yeast. The last time I used US-05, I think 4 years ago, it was for a porter and took quite a bit longer to get started, and then limped along for about 6 days before I considered it finished with primary. Notty is usually done in about 3 days, and cleans up well in another 2-3 days.
 
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Noob_Brewer

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My memory was a little off but here is my direct experience, from my notes, fermenting a RIS with Notty:

2 packs Notty into a 1.6L starter

Mash temp- 152 f
Mash length- 90 minutes
OG- 1.100
FG- 1.017
ABV- 11,9%
Ferm temp- 62-64f
Days from OG to FG- 7

It’s not overly hot. I like to ask people to estimate ABV before I tell them and I typically get a response of 8-10%.

I’ll sing Notty’s praises all day long.
Thanks. How was the mouthfeel with that ~12% beer and finishing at .017? Good to hear that it isn't really boozy considering your peeps thought it was 8-10%. Thats a big plus for me and my tastes.
 

Kickass

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Thanks. How was the mouthfeel with that ~12% beer and finishing at .017? Good to hear that it isn't really boozy considering your peeps thought it was 8-10%. Thats a big plus for me and my tastes.

Mouthfeel is heavy without being sweet. I added some unsweetened coco and rum soaked oak cubes so that probably contributes somewhat. Coco adds perception of sweetness while oak tannins and rum detract from sweetness.
 
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