Author Topic: 99% attenuation?  (Read 506 times)

Offline hd3

  • Assistant Brewer
  • ***
  • Posts: 169
    • View Profile
99% attenuation?
« on: November 23, 2013, 07:20:31 AM »
Hello. I hope all is well. I have a question. Just bottled a Belgian Dubbel yesterday and was taking a fg reading. This one finished at 1.001. The OG was 1.070. The fg was lower than anything I have ever brewed. With the numbers plugged in, it indicated it was 99% attenuation. It was Belgian wyeast 1214. Is 99% attenuation possible? And, is that even something to aspire to...except when looking for a super dry beer?

Thanks.

Hermen D.
Liquid Poets Society - Homebrew Club

Offline mabrungard

  • Senior Brewmaster
  • ******
  • Posts: 1101
    • View Profile
    • Bru'n Water
Re: 99% attenuation?
« Reply #1 on: November 23, 2013, 08:05:38 AM »
If you have added a simple sugar to the wort, then attenuation of that magnitude is conceivable. However, I wouldn't expect that a Dubbel would attenuate to that degree.  Double check your results.
Martin B
Carmel, IN

BJCP National
Foam Blowers of Indiana (FBI)

Brewing Water Information at:
https://sites.google.com/site/brunwater/

Like Bru'n Water on Facebook for occasional discussions on brewing water and Bru'n Water

Offline a10t2

  • Official Poobah of No Life.
  • *
  • Posts: 3166
  • Ask me why I don't like Chico!
    • View Profile
    • SeanTerrill.com
Re: 99% attenuation?
« Reply #2 on: November 23, 2013, 09:00:42 AM »
Have you calibrated the hydrometer?
Beer is like porn. You can buy it, but it's more fun to make your own.
http://seanterrill.com/category/brewing/

Offline erockrph

  • Brewmaster General
  • *******
  • Posts: 2415
  • Chepachet, RI
    • View Profile
    • Critical Tastings
Re: 99% attenuation?
« Reply #3 on: November 23, 2013, 09:20:24 AM »
Have you calibrated the hydrometer?

+1 - that FG reading sounds way too low to me. That's the ballpark for something like a Saison or Brett-aged beer, but doesn't seem right for a dubbel. Even if you mashed super low and used 20% simple sugar, I can't imagine most Belgian yeast strains finishing quite that low. If your hydrometer was off by 10 points or so, then I think you'd be in the right ballpark.

A few followup questions for you:
- How did the hydro sample taste? If it was truly that low I'd expect it to taste hot, thin and boozy.
- What was your grain bill/mash schedule?
- How much sugar did you use in the recipe?

As far as whether 99% attenuation is possible, it is with something like a Saison strain or Brett. But keep in mind that this is apparent attenuation. Alcohol is lighter than water and will affect how your gravity reads. that's why things like ciders and meads finish out below 1.000. The sugars are 100% fermentable, so the amount of alcohol present will bring your FG reading below one. In your case the real attenuation is closer to 80%, even with a 99% apparent attenuation.


Eric B.

Finally got around to starting a homebrewing blog: The Hop Whisperer

Offline hd3

  • Assistant Brewer
  • ***
  • Posts: 169
    • View Profile
Re: 99% attenuation?
« Reply #4 on: November 23, 2013, 11:05:23 AM »
Hydrometer is calibrated. All is right there. Sample was at 60 degrees...so no temp correction needed.

I used 1.5 pounds candi sugar in the boil. I mashed at 152 for 60 minutes. Hit my target OG on the head.

The sample tasted awesome. It wasn't too thin and not boozy at all. Tasted like New Belgium Abbey which was what I was going for.

I triple checked my readings. I took the first, let it sit for 20 minutes, rechecked....still the same. Gave the meter a spin...still the same.

Possible over-pitch? But from what I have read, over pitching won't cause too much of a final gravity difference.

Thanks.
Hermen D.
Liquid Poets Society - Homebrew Club

Online morticaixavier

  • Official Poobah of No Life.
  • *
  • Posts: 5690
  • Davis, CA
    • View Profile
    • The Best Artist in the WORLD!!!!!
Re: 99% attenuation?
« Reply #5 on: November 23, 2013, 01:28:08 PM »
have you calibrated your thermometer? I have seen attenuation like that with belgian strains on occasion when I mash really low (<=148)
"Creativity is the residue of wasted time" - A. Einstein

Jonathan I Fuller

Offline duboman

  • Brewmaster
  • *****
  • Posts: 786
    • View Profile
Re: 99% attenuation?
« Reply #6 on: November 23, 2013, 01:41:15 PM »
If anything, over pitching may have caused a stall or stuck fermentation, not a greater attenuation.

I'm thinking you mashed lower than you think as well. Calibrate your thermometer and ensure its accurate
Peace....Love......Beer......

The Commune Brewing Company-Perfecting the craft of beer since 2010

Offline hd3

  • Assistant Brewer
  • ***
  • Posts: 169
    • View Profile
Re: 99% attenuation?
« Reply #7 on: November 23, 2013, 04:50:00 PM »
Well...I'm in luck because I'm out tonight to buy a new thermometer because mine recently died. I calibrated my thermometer awhile back but not recently. I wonder if that was the culprit. Thanks everyone.
Hermen D.
Liquid Poets Society - Homebrew Club