Small Beer from Imperial Stout

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CircaChris

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Just finished brewing an imperial stout and used alot of grain (20+lbs = 5g) that the plan was reuse the grain post mash to make a small stout with a different yeast. This was a week ago, The imperial is doing fine and dandy, slowly chugging along. The small beer (1.04 OG) flocculation seems to have stopped quick like two days in. Understood the majority of the sugars have been used for the imperial. Would it be wise to pitch more yeast or just wait? Has anybody made a second beer from an imperial stout, and how did it turn out?
 

VikeMan

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The small beer (1.04 OG) flocculation seems to have stopped quick like two days in.
Do you mean fermentation has stopped? If so, have you confirmed that with gravity readings 2-3 days apart?
 
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CircaChris

CircaChris

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Can't see fermentation happening anymore as it is such a dark beer (no Krausen) also no gas noticibly leaving the blow off tube. Haven't taken a gravity reading as I assume the yeast is still working slowly but will do soon.
 

VikeMan

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Can't see fermentation happening anymore as it is such a dark beer (no Krausen) also no gas noticibly leaving the blow off tube. Haven't taken a gravity reading as I assume the yeast is still working slowly but will do soon.
Depending on temperature, pitch rate, and other factors, the small beer may have been more or less finished attenuating in those two days where you saw activity. And of course, bubbling or lack thereof isn't always a reliable indicator.
 
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CircaChris

CircaChris

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True. It was fermenting at high temp. But to pitch more or not to pitch? Suppose I have to take a gravity reading first.
 

VikeMan

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True. It was fermenting at high temp. But to pitch more or not to pitch? Suppose I have to take a gravity reading first.
So far, I've heard nothing to suggest you need to pitch more yeast.
 

SirHC_

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I did a RIS/Dry Irish awhile back. Both turned out well.
I agree, no more yeast, just time.
 

RePete

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So, I am planning on trying this today. Assuming one boil kettle. My question is do you mash/sparge the first batch, boil, then mash/sparge the second? Or sparge the second batch immediately and save the wort?
 

mashpaddled

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So, I am planning on trying this today. Assuming one boil kettle. My question is do you mash/sparge the first batch, boil, then mash/sparge the second? Or sparge the second batch immediately and save the wort?
You can only mash once because once you've mashed there should be full conversion and then you're just drawing those sugars and flavor compounds out of the grain. The exception is if you add more grain for the second beer. In that case you need the mash (if convertible grains) or steep (for nonconvertible specialty grains) and then sparge.

Depending on your targets you may use just first runnings for the first beer and your sparges for the second, or first and second runnings for beer one and the third runnings for beer two.
 

RePete

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Thanks. I've never tried getting a second beer out of the same batch of grain yet.
 
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CircaChris

CircaChris

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You can only mash once because once you've mashed there should be full conversion and then you're just drawing those sugars and flavor compounds out of the grain. The exception is if you add more grain for the second beer. In that case you need the mash (if convertible grains) or steep (for nonconvertible specialty grains) and then sparge.

Depending on your targets you may use just first runnings for the first beer and your sparges for the second, or first and second runnings for beer one and the third runnings for beer two.
You can hold some grains back as suggested and add a few lbs to mash for a while longer before the second runnings. Remember to sparge again. It is beneficial to have some rice hulls (which I did not do) or at least a false bottom if not BIAB for laughtering. With so much grain it can be a slow process.
 

RePete

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Yeah. I don't have rice hulls. I did consider adding some additional grain. Or maybe oats, for the second beer.
 
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CircaChris

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DME will certainly help boost the abv of the second beer. I actually used 4 lbs of flaked oats as part of the mash for both and it was still slow to drain.
 

RePete

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As I see it, the second batch is all bonus. So I may experiment a little.
 
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I made a Light Stout/Brown Ale from the parti-gyle (2nd runnings) of my Imperial Stout. It was interesting, but not something I would do again the same way, the flavors were just a little strange, unbalanced malt flavor might be the best description.

On the other hand, I made a Pale Ale (Centennial & Cascade hops) from the parti-gyle of my latest Barley Wine (2-Row, Amber, Victory, Crystal 40) and it tastes identical to Sierra Nevada Pale Ale.

Either way, it is almost free beer, so what's not to like?

If the 2nd runnings aren't to your taste, adding some flavor grains for steeping might help. I did not do this for the little stout, but did do this for the little barleywine and it made all the difference.
 

day_trippr

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I almost pulled a 5 gallon small beer out of the 10 gallon 1.108 stout I did Tuesday but for exactly that reason decided not to. It'd be a thin, weird version of the beer I've kept on tap for many years running, and frankly I'd rather use the faucet (and keg) for something I wouldn't be questioning "Why did I do this?" ;)

Cheers!
 

RePete

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Things got crazy for me, and I decided to do something different last time. Something that required less thinking. So looking to brew the RIS and a second beer this weekend.
 

Northern_Brewer

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It's worth mentioning that if you're partigyling, you shouldn't really ferment the different runnings separately. The weaker beers will be much improved by having some of the first runnings blended in, as the good flavour tends to concentrate in the first runnings. So for instance most of Fuller's production is London Pride (their Best) which is a 1:1 blend of the first and second runnings, whilst the now retired Chiswick Bitter (and its current alter egos) was/is around 1:3 first:second from memory.

And it may be better to think of the small beer off a RIS as a dark mild rather than stout.
 
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