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tjthresh
04/04/06 10:16 AM  
Bottling a Belgian Dark Strong
So I'm getting ready to bottle the subject beer. Right now it is cold conditioning so get all of the yeast out of it. I want to dose each bottle with a measured amout of sugar and yeast. Have any of you done this. I have a syringe that measures in ml for the sugar solution, and I thought I could weigh out a set weight in grams for some dry yeast. What do you guys think?
Cisco
04/04/06 11:47 AM  
Re: Bottling a Belgian Dark Strong
If you're botlling 5 gallons and want the high carbonation level of most Belgian beers, which is 2.8 atmospheres, then weigh out 5.2 ounces of corn sugar. Then boil it with a minimum amount of water and add to the entire 5 gallons and stir slowly. Then add your yeast and stir slowly some more. Then bottle and stir the whole mixture occasionally.

You should make a fresh yeast starter a few days before you bottle.

Joelle
04/04/06 03:41 PM  
Re: Bottling a Belgian Dark Strong
Cisco, are you pitching an active starter, or do you let the yeast settle out and decant most of the liquid before putting it in the bottling bucket? Also, what is the volume of the starter? Just curious.

Joelle

Cisco
04/04/06 04:01 PM  
Re: Bottling a Belgian Dark Strong
Yes, I pitch an active starter. It's usually yeast I have collected from the fermenter from the same batch. The size is usually no more than 16 ounces and it all goes into the bottling bucket along with the priming sugar solution.
Joelle
04/04/06 05:24 PM  
Re: Bottling a Belgian Dark Strong
Cool, thanks!
ErikH
04/04/06 05:31 PM  
Re: Bottling a Belgian Dark Strong
ErikH
04/04/06 05:33 PM  
Re: Bottling a Belgian Dark Strong
Whoops! Premature post-ulation.

Cisco - do you adjust your priming sugar quantity to account for remaining unfermented sugar in your active starter? This is true kraeusening, yes?

Cisco
04/04/06 06:33 PM  
Re: Bottling a Belgian Dark Strong
No I do not account for the very little amount of remaining unfermented sugar in the active starter, it's not much, just enough to get the yeast active again so that they immediateley start to carbonate the bottle once they are corked or capped.
Cisco
04/05/06 11:19 AM  
Re: Bottling a Belgian Dark Strong
Just to clarify, you can make a very small starter of about 8 ounces but be sure to have plenty of yeast. All that you are doing is feeding the yeast to wake it up and activate so that it quickly goes to work once it is in the bottle. When you pitch the yeast it should be almost finished with the sugar you added to wake it up. You should make the starter at least one to two days prior to bottling.
jds
04/30/06 11:32 PM  
Re: Bottling a Belgian Dark Strong
Cisco,

I've read a few of your posts and appreciate your support to the group with the Belgian Bottling issue. Can you provide some more detail on the steps from fermentation to bottling? Is cold conditioning necessary to get the yeast out of the beer prior to adding priming sugar? Thanks.

jds
04/30/06 11:48 PM  
Re: Bottling a Belgian Dark Strong
Can you also recommend a corker? Is the on from morebeer.com sufficient for the 750ml Chimay bottles?
Cisco
05/01/06 11:14 AM  
Re: Bottling a Belgian Dark Strong
Cold conditioning isn't entirely necessary but it does help to clarify the beer and soften some of the edges. I will usually cold condition the beer in kegs for about 6 weeks at around 36F before bottling. If you don't cold condition and just bottle right after secondary fermentation then you'll probably have a thick yeast cake at the bottom of each bottle. With proper cold conditioning and a small yeast starter for bottling you should see a barely detectable film of yeast at the bottom of each bottle.

I was responsible for helping Morebeer get the proper sized corks (they mention me in the cork descriptions and mu instructions for inserting them) and metal hooded wire wraps for Belgian bottling. The ferrari corker is the right floor corker to use. I've had mine before Morebeer started to sell them and they works so little effort. It will cork any size bottle. The largest I have corked is magnums. There is even a bottle capper attachment for it that costs a little more.

ErikH
05/02/06 07:07 PM  
Re: Bottling a Belgian Dark Strong
jds:

Check the extensive thread on corkers here:

http://www.babblebelt.com/newboard/thread.html?tid=1108752780&th=1138133475&pg=&tpg=1#1138136463

The Ferrari floor corker is working well for me, too.

jds
05/03/06 09:48 PM  
Re: Bottling a Belgian Dark Strong
Thanks for your help. I ordered the corker from morebeer.com.

Apparently my Belgian Ale is fermenting quite nicely. I'm traveling this week and got a call from my wife that my beer "exploded!" Turns out it was bubbling through the airlock and overflowed onto the floor. I have a mess to clean up when I get home. I love this stuff!

jds
05/20/06 02:25 PM  
Re: Bottling a Belgian Dark Strong
Cisco,

Do the corks sold by morebeer.com need to be sterilized prior to use? If so, what is the best method - boiling, bleach solution, other?

Also, can DME be used to prime a strong Belgian?

Thanks.

Cisco
05/21/06 11:59 AM  
Re: Bottling a Belgian Dark Strong
I throw them into a bucket of iodophor solution and stir them occasionally before using.

You can use DME to bottle but corn sugar is much easier to use.

 
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