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aaronbeer

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first let me say that instructions that came with kits are so bad!!!!

Now, I have a braggot that I brewed 2/24. I forgot to take a og because I am an idiot! it was
6lbs barley malt extract
3 lbs honey
yeast nutriance
lalvin d-47 wine yeast
and .5 oz nugget alpha hops

my question is that it is at 1.036 and showing no signs of life. Do I...
rack to secondary now?
Add more nutrients?
leave it alone?
Pitch more yeast?

HELP, and thank you!!!!!!!

:mug:
 

Killinger

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I did a braggot a while back, and the recipe had me bottling in three weeks. No way. It took a couple months to reach FG.

I would rack to the secondary and sit tight.
 

Kauai_Kahuna

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Fermenting honey can take a lot longer, I agree with just racking to secondary at around 1.030 and forget about it for a month.
Then you can start another batch in the primary. :)
 

mrgrackle

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i've got 2.5 gallons of metheglin where the same thing has happened. I started out with 8lbs of honey and enough water to make 2.5 gallson. It fermented along pretty well for a bit and then stopped. It's undrinkably sweet. I've racked it multiple times. I've even added champaign yeast to try and ferment as much sugar out as possible but it never restarted... I think I'm going to cut it with water and pitch in some more yeast...
 

TipsyDragon

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the above advice is good. you may also want to think about warming up the mead a little. dont go much above the minimum temperature on the yeast package. also if your using dry yeast rehydrate before using it. dont forget to add yeast neutriant (i know bad spelling). if all else fails try adding more yeast. the first batch may of gotten bogged down.
 
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aaronbeer

aaronbeer

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ok so I racked to a secondary still at 1.036. I made sure to pull a little of the white stuff from bottom incase the yeast were just hanging out for a bit. (probably a bad idea) My questions...

Tasted very sweet. Will it stay that way or will it drop?
Should I add nutrient?
Do I need to repitch some yeast?
Or should I RAHAHB and just leave it alone?
 

Tusch

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If it is still at 1.036 after 10 days, sounds like you have a stuck fermentation to me. Give it several days in secondary and see if it changes, if the move to secondary didn't wake up the yeast, you will need to look into restarting a stuck fermentation, pretty sure Hightest has a FAQ on that as well.
 
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aaronbeer

aaronbeer

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Bought some sweet mead yeast to pitch. Should I do a starter?
 

wayneb

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There are a couple of things you should check first, and I'd not use the sweet mead yeast if you can get your hands on some Lallemand active dry such as K1V-1116 or EC-1118. Both the White Labs and Wyeast sweet mead yeast strains are notoriously flaky -- and they are the ones least likely to re-start a stuck fermentation. If D47 stalled out, then you'll need a more aggressive strain to complete the job.

Before you do anything, I'd check the pH of your brew first. Three things are the most likely causes of your stuck fermentation, and of them, the very most likely candidate is too low of a pH. You want it to be above about 3.3, and below 4.0, ideally. The second most likely cause is insufficient nutrient and/or oxygen at the start of fermentation. Since yours is a braggot and the grains provide nutrients that honey lacks, insufficient oxygenation might be more likely the issue. The third most likely issue is with possible improper rehydration of your yeast at the outset. If you have not read hightest's Mead FAQ pages (top of this forum section), I suggest that you do now; they'll give you much more insight into what may have gone wrong, and what you can try to do about it, than I can in a few short paragraphs here.

But after you've checked to ensure that the pH is no problem, then yes, you will need to make a starter with any yeast that you are attempting a re-start with. You will need to acclimate that starter to the environment currently in your main batch by adding small amounts of the main batch to that starter over the course of a day or more -- then you'll be ready to pitch. If you choose to add nutrients, only use those that contain no DAP at this point. Yeast can only use amino (organic) sources of nitrogen this late in fermentation, with the ethanol level where it already is in your main batch. If you can't get anything like Fermaid-O or Fermaid-2133 (both are amino-only nutrients), then you should add some "yeast hulls" or "yeast ghosts." That is basically dead yeast, which will both add some nutrient value and also introduce broken up yeast cell walls, which will serve as a good toxin-trapper in your main must.

Good luck - restarting a stuck mead or wine is a lot harder than doing a beer. Braggot will be somewhere in-between, but it still takes care on your part to maximize your chances of success.
 

Snuffalupagus

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+1 on getting some EC-1118 in there and following Wayneb's advice - if you intend to restart a truly stuck fermentation.

those little EC-1118 bastards are like the Seal team of the yeast world...
no sugar will survive thier onslaught for very long. just give them a slightly less hostile environment, and posibly some extra chow and let them lay waste... :rockin:


plus being super flavor neutral, you may be able to preserve some of the flavor notes of your original yeast pitch... downside - you may need to backsweeten after using EC-1118, it'll ferment out incredibly dry if all goes according to plan. ( I like things dry - so I use EC-1118 quite a bit)
 
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aaronbeer

aaronbeer

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i wish i knew that earlier! I already ordered and I have to order everything online because we don't have a shop here. Will sweet mead yeast not work at all, even with a starter and nutrients. I have the nutrients with yeast hulls. What do I do if the Ph is off? Can I but ph strips at a normal store, like the ones you test pools with?
 
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aaronbeer

aaronbeer

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Also, is it worth restarting or will i ruin it? Should I just let it age and just have a sweet braggot?
 

wayneb

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First, restarting will not ruin it. If you don't like the residual sweetness level that it has now, your only two choices are to attempt a restart, or to blend it with a drier batch. Restarting is much easier to try first. Just follow Hightest's guidance -- you will really need to acclimate the new yeast, even if it is an UBER strain like EC-1118, to the alcohol already in your must/wort, or you will risk it sticking again.

I'm afraid I can say with 98% certainty that if you try a restart with the sweet mead yeast strains, it won't work. Sorry about that, chief!
 
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aaronbeer

aaronbeer

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Thanks to everyone for the advise. This comunity of brewers is amazing! I will try it with the yeast I have after I condition it. If it does not work, then I will let it age, and tell every I give it to, that it is a dessert drink!
 
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aaronbeer

aaronbeer

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so i tried the restart, and so far, NADA :( well, I guess I have a really sweet braggot to use as a dessert drink.
 

Tusch

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Restart with a stronger yeast man, you weren't giving it much chance by using the sweet mead yeast.
 
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aaronbeer

aaronbeer

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Is there a time limit to restarting? I mean, is there a point where it has been to long to save?
 
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aaronbeer

aaronbeer

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ok so I think the restart did not work as you all said it would not. Is it to late to try another restart, or will I ruin the batch I have? Should I just leave it alone and have a sweet braggot?
 

Tusch

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I would repitch with a stronger yeast, but I can't think of any reason why this would be a bad thing. If it is wait for or inquire directly the experts on this one.
 

wayneb

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No harm in trying a second re-start. This time use 1118, or UvaFerm 43, or one of the other yeasts specifically recommended for re-starting stuck fermentations and by all means, follow Hightest's re-start FAQ. You need to acclimate that new yeast to the alcohol already in the main must, or no matter what strain it is, it will very likely fail.

You are only limited by the potential for oxidation, or the introduction of spoilage organisms, in your efforts to re-start. Keep it clean, and under an airlock, and you can try as often as you like. However if you don't get it to go with a couple of tries of a yeast like 1118, it probably won't go no matter how many times you try it.
 

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