Author Topic: "Live and Let (Free) Rise"  (Read 404 times)

Offline Big Monk

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"Live and Let (Free) Rise"
« on: May 18, 2017, 05:42:35 PM »
Inspired by some of my favorite passages in BLAM, and some subsequent research into ester synthesis, higher alcohols and factors contributing to the development of both, I utilized a new approach to fermenting with Belgian yeast last week.

I brewed up an experimental version of what I'm calling my "2 Monks" Dubbel. I used a step mash, Low Oxygen mashing methods, and 3787 yeast into about a 17 Bx wort. I targeted 1.25 M/ml/P and gave the wort 5 minutes of aeration through an aquarium pump with stone.

I pitched at 64F with the Fermenter in a tub of water and placed the Fermenter in my finished basement on the counter. The temperature down there is consistent around 64F. I placed my STC-1000 (serving as a thermometer) probe into the thermowell of my bucket lid and let the beer free rise with no external temperature control. It stayed around 64-65F for around 30-36 hours and then began to free rise toward a peak temperature of 74F.

At that point I was 1 Bx away from terminal gravity (from my FFT) and bottled the beer targeting 2.7 Vol. CO2. I sampled a bottle on Tuesday (10 days grain to glass) and it was already developing quite nicely. No Fusels, a great set of fruity esters from fermentation and some very subtle but present raisiny and figgy type flavors from the combination of CaraHell, CaraBohemian, and Special B. I'm tempted to say there is some rumminess to the alcohol but I may be biased on that or looking for it from the Turbinado addition.

So, long story short, I'll be continuing to experiment with this fermentation schedule and forgoing temperature control in favor of letting the yeast do what they want.
« Last Edit: May 18, 2017, 05:45:53 PM by Big Monk »
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Offline HoosierBrew

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Re: "Live and Let (Free) Rise"
« Reply #1 on: May 18, 2017, 05:51:53 PM »
I've taken BLAM in that same direction, Derek, with good results. That temp profile you used is pretty much dead on for my approach to Trappists. Beer looks great!
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Offline JJeffers09

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Re: "Live and Let (Free) Rise"
« Reply #2 on: May 18, 2017, 05:52:48 PM »
I love it.  It looks great btw.  Let's see how it is around 2 months??

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Offline Stevie

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"Live and Let (Free) Rise"
« Reply #3 on: May 18, 2017, 05:53:48 PM »
But you are employing temp control, just less strict control. I can't quite let my yeast go quite like that, but I do stop caring about saisons after day 2 and other beers after day 3 or 4. Good stuff

Offline Big Monk

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"Live and Let (Free) Rise"
« Reply #4 on: May 18, 2017, 05:56:52 PM »
Thanks Jon. I reached out to Tomme Arthur from Lost Abbey and Phil Leinhart from Ommegang and got some great feedback and tips back from them. They clarified some things they talked about in BLAM and gave me some advice.

I feel confident that these yeast want to do their own thing and in the words of another BLAM alum, Ron Jeffries:

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"Oxidation of wort has a deleterious effect on the quality of the final beer." Jean DeClerck

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Offline Big Monk

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Re: "Live and Let (Free) Rise"
« Reply #5 on: May 18, 2017, 06:00:06 PM »
I love it.  It looks great btw.  Let's see how it is around 2 months??

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Judging by how good it tastes already, I'd expect in another week when some of the yeast aroma and flavor (from the bottle spunding) die down that this one will be dynamite.

The key is going to be finding the balance between temperature, pitch rate and aeration, but the lack of any fusels or hot solventy flavors, lets me know that I'm on the right track.
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"Oxidation of wort has a deleterious effect on the quality of the final beer." Jean DeClerck

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Offline Big Monk

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"Live and Let (Free) Rise"
« Reply #6 on: May 18, 2017, 06:01:26 PM »
But you are employing temp control, just less strict control. I can't quite let my yeast go quite like that, but I do stop caring about saisons after day 2 and other beers after day 3 or 4. Good stuff

True. The thermal mass of the water bath, coupled with the ambient temp of my basement, is "clamping" down on swings in temperature so I get a nice steady free rise.
« Last Edit: May 18, 2017, 06:05:40 PM by Big Monk »
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"Oxidation of wort has a deleterious effect on the quality of the final beer." Jean DeClerck

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Offline Phil_M

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Re: "Live and Let (Free) Rise"
« Reply #7 on: May 19, 2017, 03:52:33 AM »
So the temperature is buffered, rather than actively controlled.

It's been a year since I brewed a Belgian style...you all are making me itch to brew something other than a saison...
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Offline Big Monk

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Re: "Live and Let (Free) Rise"
« Reply #8 on: May 19, 2017, 04:06:58 AM »
So the temperature is buffered, rather than actively controlled.

It's been a year since I brewed a Belgian style...you all are making me itch to brew something other than a saison...

After researching a bit and chewing on a comment from Tomme Arthur (who responded to an email of mine with some great feedback) shown below (from BLAM), I'm thinking that the buffering time I saw last week should be sufficient to get through the lag phase.

Tomme Arthur, from BLAM:

"Currently, we are overpitching the cell count. We are then undercutting our oxygen levels at KO, forcing the yeast to create esters by going through a starved lag phase. We are now fermenting at 64F (18C) to start, at which point we cut the yeast loose and let fermentation go. In other words, at this point we are not using the jackets on the fermenter to cool the beer. We typically see an increase of ferment temperature into the high 70s when we reach terminal gravity. This ramping-up process works great, as we get the yeast to finish in a higher temperature range, with much of the alcohol production taking place at lower temperatures, thereby minimizing fusel alcohol production. Spicy phenols are created initially, followed by much of the ester production as the beer ferments at a warmer temperature."

This is what I am going to keep pursuing. Pitch in the 1.25 M/ml/P range for now, with 5 minutes of aeration through a stone and aquarium pump. I'll play with these 2 variables initially.

Another thing will be to try and lower OG on all the beers and let the attenuation, something we want dearly with these beers anyway, drive up the ABV.

I am targeting 6, 7, 8, and 9% respectively for my Monk (Single/Table Beer), 2 Monks (Dubbel), 3 Monks (Tripel) and Big Monk (DSA).
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"Oxidation of wort has a deleterious effect on the quality of the final beer." Jean DeClerck

"We are what we repeatedly do. Excellence, therefore, is not an act, but a habit." Aristotle

Offline narcout

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Re: "Live and Let (Free) Rise"
« Reply #9 on: May 19, 2017, 08:18:44 AM »
Another thing will be to try and lower OG on all the beers and let the attenuation, something we want dearly with these beers anyway, drive up the ABV.

How was your attenuation on this batch? 

I kegged a tripel on Saturday that was fermented with a repitch of 3787 that hit 88%, which I was pretty happy with.
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Offline Big Monk

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Re: "Live and Let (Free) Rise"
« Reply #10 on: May 19, 2017, 08:33:00 AM »
Another thing will be to try and lower OG on all the beers and let the attenuation, something we want dearly with these beers anyway, drive up the ABV.

How was your attenuation on this batch? 

I kegged a tripel on Saturday that was fermented with a repitch of 3787 that hit 88%, which I was pretty happy with.

I hit almost 87%. I wasn't really looking to use 3787, as I'm planning to start using 1214 exclusively for this series of beers, but so far I'm very happy with the results.
Check us out at www.lowoxygenbrewing.com

"Oxidation of wort has a deleterious effect on the quality of the final beer." Jean DeClerck

"We are what we repeatedly do. Excellence, therefore, is not an act, but a habit." Aristotle

Offline zwiller

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Re: "Live and Let (Free) Rise"
« Reply #11 on: May 19, 2017, 09:15:31 AM »
Anxious to try a step mash on next trappist (never have), I am getting a few more points lower on them.
Sam
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Offline majorvices

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Re: "Live and Let (Free) Rise"
« Reply #12 on: May 20, 2017, 07:30:35 AM »
I've been playing around with Kviek (Norwegian farm house yeast) at ambient temps, this time of the year 80s and 90s. Tasting out of the fermentor it is very interesting (in a good way). I am planning on carbbing some up next week.

Offline coolman26

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Re: "Live and Let (Free) Rise"
« Reply #13 on: May 20, 2017, 07:39:17 AM »
This is similar to what I do. I pitch at 64. All I do with anything Belgian is I wrap the fermenter with a thick damp blanket to slow it down for the first 48. I let it go after that. The temps usually make it into the high 70's, not that I care about the finishing temp.


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