High Spec. Grav wort question

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High Spec. Grav wort question

Postby greeley » Thu Oct 11, 2001 7:20 am

I currently have a batch of honey wheat fermenting. The starting spec. grav. was 1.06. Wyeast recommends doubling the yeast for every .008 over 1.048. I haven't seen this recommendation in any high spec grav wort recipies before. Am I going to run into trouble at bottling time? Will there be enough yeast for bottle conditioning?
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Yeast Strain Dependant....

Postby Mesa Maltworks » Thu Oct 11, 2001 5:11 pm

You may be ok, but this generality of .008 over 1.048 requiring a double pitch is a bit broad. The yeast performance is actually strain dependant. If you are using 1068 or the likes, I'm sure you will be ok, but if you are using something less tolerant to alcohol, you might run into trouble, although 1.060 is not all that high.

In the probrew world, it is true that you scale pitching rates to gravity, but it is not by volume, but rather cell count per ml. of wort. This is beyond most home brewers, so my recommendation is to choose strains known to tolerate high levels of alcohol up to 1.065. If above this, pitch at least a 250 ml slurry to begin primary and then follow with another 250 ml. slurry when you transfer to the secondary.

In the case of barley wines and wheat wines, it is advisable to pitch around 100 ml. of slurry at bottling/priming time to make sure you can carbonate ok. Some people even do secondary fermentations with champagne yeast with ultra-hi grav. brews.

Eric
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Up your yeast count

Postby Push Eject » Mon Oct 15, 2001 11:54 am

Greeley,
Are you making a yeast starter? I tend to pitch no less than 1000ml of active yeast regardless of S.G. For higher gravity beers I'll grow it up to 2500ml before pitching. I always aerate my wort with pure oxygen and throw in 1/2 tsp per gallon of yeast nutrient like BrewTek's Superfood as well.
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