Author Topic: The Chimay Yeast  (Read 1640 times)

Big Monk

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The Chimay Yeast
« on: January 23, 2017, 09:08:15 PM »
OTOH, I hate 1214 fermented higher than 63.  Too much banana and bubblegum that Chimay doesn't have.
Yeah, 64 max for me. I get a banana bomb much above that. I thought I read in BLAM that they hold 64F for a day or two, then allow to rise. Could be wrong. Regardless I'm sure our 1214/500 isn't the exact strain they're playing with, after they've repitched for so long and mutations have likely changed its character a bit.

Sorry to teleport you guys but I did not want to derail the thread this came from.

I've been very much interested in this particular topic for a few reasons:

1.) I absolutely adore Chimay's beers. There are others more complex, but nobody matches them for consistency and overall I just love the flavor

2.) I've been trying to get into some of the deeper factors that influence attenuation, ester production and overall flavor profile of Monastic yeast in general, and Chimay in particular.

To your point Denny, I think that using the available strains (WL500 and WY1214) means doing it different than the monks. Trying to avoid the flavors you and Jon described means fermenting at around 66 °F for me, lower for you.

Chimay themselves starts at 68 °F (per BLAM, among others) and finishes in the high 70s to Low 80s °F. With that said, they are using the "mother" strain.

"Yeast" has a very interesting point buried inside of it about the Chimay yeast that I feel speaks to a point you made Jon:



So they are not repitching, as most may think, meaning a new pure culture is built up for every batch. Now it has been said that when Father Theodore originally isolated and cultivated the yeast, he did so with temperature tolerance in mind.

This may explain their fermentation schedule and why they can adhere to it when doing so for us means a different, undesirable profile.

I'm interested to see where we go with this discussion.
« Last Edit: January 23, 2017, 09:12:31 PM by Big Monk »

Offline The Beerery

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Re: The Chimay Yeast
« Reply #1 on: January 23, 2017, 09:14:24 PM »
Pressure suppresses esters. I don't know how big they are but it could be due to large batch sizes and or fermenting under augmented pressure.
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Big Monk

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Re: The Chimay Yeast
« Reply #2 on: January 23, 2017, 09:35:25 PM »
Pressure suppresses esters. I don't know how big they are but it could be due to large batch sizes and or fermenting under augmented pressure.
That's one of the major factors discussed in BLAM.

Offline The Beerery

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Re: The Chimay Yeast
« Reply #3 on: January 23, 2017, 09:37:15 PM »
Pressure suppresses esters. I don't know how big they are but it could be due to large batch sizes and or fermenting under augmented pressure.
That's one of the major factors discussed in BLAM.

Easy enough 2.5 gallon keg with a spund set at 10psi  8)
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Offline HoosierBrew

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Re: The Chimay Yeast
« Reply #4 on: January 23, 2017, 11:12:31 PM »
OTOH, I hate 1214 fermented higher than 63.  Too much banana and bubblegum that Chimay doesn't have.
Yeah, 64 max for me. I get a banana bomb much above that. I thought I read in BLAM that they hold 64F for a day or two, then allow to rise. Could be wrong. Regardless I'm sure our 1214/500 isn't the exact strain they're playing with, after they've repitched for so long and mutations have likely changed its character a bit.

Sorry to teleport you guys but I did not want to derail the thread this came from.

I've been very much interested in this particular topic for a few reasons:

1.) I absolutely adore Chimay's beers. There are others more complex, but nobody matches them for consistency and overall I just love the flavor

2.) I've been trying to get into some of the deeper factors that influence attenuation, ester production and overall flavor profile of Monastic yeast in general, and Chimay in particular.

To your point Denny, I think that using the available strains (WL500 and WY1214) means doing it different than the monks. Trying to avoid the flavors you and Jon described means fermenting at around 66 °F for me, lower for you.

Chimay themselves starts at 68 °F (per BLAM, among others) and finishes in the high 70s to Low 80s °F. With that said, they are using the "mother" strain.

"Yeast" has a very interesting point buried inside of it about the Chimay yeast that I feel speaks to a point you made Jon:



So they are not repitching, as most may think, meaning a new pure culture is built up for every batch. Now it has been said that when Father Theodore originally isolated and cultivated the yeast, he did so with temperature tolerance in mind.

This may explain their fermentation schedule and why they can adhere to it when doing so for us means a different, undesirable profile.

I'm interested to see where we go with this discussion.



Yeah, more coherent info for sure. I forgot the part ablout them using their pure strain each time (been a while since I read BLAM). I chalked it up to mutation. Regardless, the issue of fermenting under pressure may well 'unlevel' the playing field for us, too. I honestly don't think I've ever used 500, but I've used a ton of 1214. It's a great yeast but damn, it's one temp sensitive mother. Slight changes to temp schedule make a noticeable difference. I must've confused my luck with 63-64F with what I'd read in BLAM. Need to go back and read it through again (obviously).
Jon H.

Big Monk

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Re: The Chimay Yeast
« Reply #5 on: January 24, 2017, 12:03:14 AM »
The blurb about pure yeast is actual from the Zainasheff/White book.

I'm a big fan of the fermentation chapter in BLAM. Is has a boatload of information about all the interrelated "levers" one can pull to become a monastic yeast whisperer

Big Monk

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Re: The Chimay Yeast
« Reply #6 on: January 24, 2017, 12:54:15 AM »
Pressure suppresses esters. I don't know how big they are but it could be due to large batch sizes and or fermenting under augmented pressure.


Big Monk

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The Chimay Yeast
« Reply #7 on: January 24, 2017, 12:54:44 AM »
OTOH, I hate 1214 fermented higher than 63.  Too much banana and bubblegum that Chimay doesn't have.
Yeah, 64 max for me. I get a banana bomb much above that. I thought I read in BLAM that they hold 64F for a day or two, then allow to rise. Could be wrong. Regardless I'm sure our 1214/500 isn't the exact strain they're playing with, after they've repitched for so long and mutations have likely changed its character a bit.

Sorry to teleport you guys but I did not want to derail the thread this came from.

I've been very much interested in this particular topic for a few reasons:

1.) I absolutely adore Chimay's beers. There are others more complex, but nobody matches them for consistency and overall I just love the flavor

2.) I've been trying to get into some of the deeper factors that influence attenuation, ester production and overall flavor profile of Monastic yeast in general, and Chimay in particular.

To your point Denny, I think that using the available strains (WL500 and WY1214) means doing it different than the monks. Trying to avoid the flavors you and Jon described means fermenting at around 66 °F for me, lower for you.

Chimay themselves starts at 68 °F (per BLAM, among others) and finishes in the high 70s to Low 80s °F. With that said, they are using the "mother" strain.

"Yeast" has a very interesting point buried inside of it about the Chimay yeast that I feel speaks to a point you made Jon:



So they are not repitching, as most may think, meaning a new pure culture is built up for every batch. Now it has been said that when Father Theodore originally isolated and cultivated the yeast, he did so with temperature tolerance in mind.

This may explain their fermentation schedule and why they can adhere to it when doing so for us means a different, undesirable profile.

I'm interested to see where we go with this discussion.



Yeah, more coherent info for sure. I forgot the part ablout them using their pure strain each time (been a while since I read BLAM). I chalked it up to mutation. Regardless, the issue of fermenting under pressure may well 'unlevel' the playing field for us, too. I honestly don't think I've ever used 500, but I've used a ton of 1214. It's a great yeast but damn, it's one temp sensitive mother. Slight changes to temp schedule make a noticeable difference. I must've confused my luck with 63-64F with what I'd read in BLAM. Need to go back and read it through again (obviously).


Big Monk

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Re: The Chimay Yeast
« Reply #8 on: January 24, 2017, 01:08:20 AM »
Just reading through BLAM a little:

1.) Yeast growth is a major player in ester and higher alcohol production
2.) Temperature obviously plays a major role
3.) OG plays a role as does the amount of attenuation
4.) The amount of aeration is a factor
5.) The presence of fusel alcohols accentuates isoamyl acetate (banana/fruity)
6.) Increase temperature typically means increase ethyl acetate, floral and fruity notes
7.) Decreased temperature suppresses esters and accentuates phenols
8.) Higher pitching rates lower ethyl acetate. Very high or very low increases esters
9.) Fermenter geometry affects ester production

You can see that, with the exception, in most of our cases, of Fermenter geometry, that we have a fair bit of control over the flavor profile of these Belgian yeast. It's all about find out which levers work best in tandem with one another.




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Offline The Beerery

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Re: The Chimay Yeast
« Reply #9 on: January 24, 2017, 01:55:53 AM »
Pressure suppresses esters. I don't know how big they are but it could be due to large batch sizes and or fermenting under augmented pressure.


Well that should make it easy enough to figure out the hydrostatic pressure.  Which should also be the pressure one would set the spund to.


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Big Monk

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Re: The Chimay Yeast
« Reply #10 on: January 24, 2017, 02:02:35 AM »
Pressure suppresses esters. I don't know how big they are but it could be due to large batch sizes and or fermenting under augmented pressure.


Well that should make it easy enough to figure out the hydrostatic pressure.  Which should also be the pressure one would set the spund to.


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That would definitely be a reason they start out higher in fermentation temperature. If you are suppressing esters with your fermenter geometry but are in a beer group that makes its bones in estery beers, you have to make up for it in other ways, namely attenuation, higher gravity and higher fermentation temperature.

You start to see how the pieces fit together: Conical vessels, low pitching rates, high attenuation and gravity plus higher temperatures...

Offline The Beerery

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Re: The Chimay Yeast
« Reply #11 on: January 24, 2017, 02:14:21 AM »
Yup. It's all about reading between the lines.  The answers are often hidden in plain sight.


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Big Monk

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Re: The Chimay Yeast
« Reply #12 on: January 29, 2017, 02:24:34 AM »
The use of wheat in Chimay recipes seems odd to me. It always has.

Yet if you take into account the great influence DeClerck had on the brewery, and how the classic 4 step mash he advocated is likely still used, you can see that any benefits to head retention wheat may have is simply making up for the fact that head is being impaired by the protein rest.

So....

Skip any ingredient based head retention techniques on your next Chimay and instead use a 63/72/77 °C step mash for 25/30/10 min in their place.




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Offline neddles

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Re: The Chimay Yeast
« Reply #13 on: January 29, 2017, 05:50:35 AM »
The use of wheat in Chimay recipes seems odd to me. It always has.

Yet if you take into account the great influence DeClerck had on the brewery, and how the classic 4 step mash he advocated is likely still used, you can see that any benefits to head retention wheat may have is simply making up for the fact that head is being impaired by the protein rest.

So....

Skip any ingredient based head retention techniques on your next Chimay and instead use a 63/72/77 °C step mash for 25/30/10 min in their place.




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Couple of questions… What is the advantage of 63C or 145F over 148F and why bother/what is the logic behind the mashout if I am 100% converted? TIA.

Big Monk

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Re: The Chimay Yeast
« Reply #14 on: January 29, 2017, 01:09:10 PM »
β amylase acts optimally at 62 °C and that can change slightly from malt to malt based on the gelatinization temperature.

As for the mashout, that temperature promotes the development of foam positive glycoproteins and since most of not all people can implement that rest with no issues, it's a no brainer for most.

Bryan has said many times that once you get to a place where you have the "bedrock" of your skill set and technique down and you are trying to make small incremental improvements towards the best beer you can make that there are certain +1s you can implement. So where things like limiting O2 in mashing may be +50s towards major improvements (if you subscribe to what we have on our site) then the mash out step would be a +1. 


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