From the HBD Archive
From: (Keith Winter)
Subject: unknown
Date: 1990-05-10 17:37:20 GMT

>ileaf!io!peoria!cjh@EDDIE.MIT.EDU (Chip Hitchcock) writes:

>Subject: stuck fermentations
> I recently had serious fermentation start up in some bottles and am
>wondering whether there was any way I could have persuaded it to happen
>in the carboy.
> The recipe was from Papazian's Sparrowhawk Porter with available
>ingredients---1 John Bull dark, 1 M&F Amber, 1# dry amber, 1# chocolate malt,
>2.5 oz hops (boil+finish), 5 gallons water...
> The beer was harsh but drinkable 2 weeks after bottling and mellowed a bit
>as it aged. I had a few bottles in the office for ~6 weeks,...
> I'm not too worried about the bottles I have left in the cellar, but but
>I'd really prefer to eat up all the fermentable sugars in the carboy (and be
>able to bring samples in for other homebrewers without worrying about
>explosions). Is there any way to test for remaining sugar, or to persuade the
>yeast to finish its job?
>Any ideas? Any suggestions?
I had a somewhat similar experience with this same recipe as far as the
S.G.'s and the carbonation but the opposite regarding the yeast activity.
I wasn't able to find the exact ingredients in Papazian's book, so I
substitued what the homebrew shop had: 6 lbs dark extract, 2 lbs amber DME,
1 lb black patent, 1.5 oz Cascade (boil), 1 oz Hallertaur (finish). I
rehydrated Edme yeast in a small amount of cooled wort, pitched when the
wort in the primary reached 80 degrees. S.G. 1.062. I had SIGNIFICANT
activity within 4 hours; the wort was bubbling away like crazy. Activity
had virtually stopped within 18 hours; S.G. = 1.032; I had expected it to
be down to 1.020 as the recipe indicated, based on the activity level. Two
days later, S.G. was still 1.032. I transferred to the secondary after which
there was very little activity. After ten days with no change in S.G. I
discussed the situation with the local homebrew shop. They felt that it was
a stuck fermentation and that I should add a new yeast culter. This started
a little activity for two days then nothing. So, what could I do? I bottled
with 3/4 cup corn sugar, as usual. S.G. was 1.026.

After ten days, the brew is quite good and getting better each day. However,
it is very carbonated. It's interesting: the brew in 16 oz Grolsh is more
carbonated than that in the 12 oz or 22 oz (?); I have a odd collection of
bottles. No glass hand-grenades yet :-).

I am a real novice so I'd also appreciate any thoughts the more experienced
brewers have on this. However, I'm not worried....

Keith Winter

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