Bottle Conditioning Strong Belgian

Discussion in 'General Brewing Discussions' started by wolfie7873, May 18, 2015.

  1. wolfie7873

    wolfie7873 Member

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    Had some fun putting together a Belgian Golden Strong Ale over the weekend, but now that it's happily bubbling away, I realize that I may be unprepared for the inevitable packaging stage.

    I want to try for as much authenticity as I can, and from what I can tell, most Trappist ales are refermented with primary yeast. This leads me to two questions.

    1) where can i source 375ml champagne bottles? The belgian bottles for sale at NorthernBrewer are rated 3.5 volumes. I'd be looking to carbonate between 3.5 and 4 so those aren't strong enough.

    2) How can I be sure how much carbon dioxide is already in solution? If I cold crash the beer, do I use the temperature before I cold crashed it or afterward to calculate the CO2 in solution?
     
  2. Nosybear

    Nosybear Well-Known Member

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    That's a problem I always run into when bottle conditioning. My solution: After cold crashing or lagering, bring it back up to room temperature. The carbon dioxide will bubble off and you can be sure of the priming calculation. Question: Why do you want to carbonate to such a high level?
     
  3. wolfie7873

    wolfie7873 Member

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    From reading around, it seems that the BJCP guideline of 2.4 is interpreted as too low. I've been reading Brew Like a Monk and it seems that the Cistercians carb higher as well.
     
  4. Ozarks Mountain Brew

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    careful with a high alcohol beer being carbed high, the alcohol can add bite and the carbonation just adds more, in my experiences indigestion can happen very easily, but im talking above 10%
     
  5. wolfie7873

    wolfie7873 Member

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    This should be about 8.7%, I think. And after seemingly endless internet searching (and an idea to buy cases of champagne and host an epic mimosa brunch), I think I have finally found a source of 375 champagne bottles.

    http://www.curdsandwine.com/product...-hardware/375-ml-champagne-bottles-case-of-12

    Anyone care to double check my math on the refermentation?

    4 volumes target - 0.81 volumes in solution = 3.19 volumes.
    3.19 volumes * 11 L of beer is 35.09 L CO2
    35.09 L CO2 is 1.5665 mol CO2
    1.5665 mol CO2 is produced by 0.783 mol Dextrose
    0.783 mol Dextrose is 141 grams of Dextrose

    141 grams of dextrose added to 11 L is a gravity of about 1004 or 1 degree Plato. At 1 million cells per mL per degree Plato, I should add 141 grams of Dextrose and 11 billion yeast cells at bottling to end up with 4 volumes CO2.

    Did I do that right?
     
  6. Nosybear

    Nosybear Well-Known Member

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    Math looks good, you might cross check with the priming sugar calculator.
     
  7. NTexBrewer

    NTexBrewer Member

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    I like to use this online calculator. It has worked well when I have used Dextrose, Sugar and Beet Sugar.

    The temperature of the beer is the warmest it has been during fermentation or conditioning. So if your fermentation reached 70 degrees and then you cold crashed to 40, you would use 70 degrees for the temperature of the beer.

    http://www.northernbrewer.com/learn/res ... alculator/
     
  8. wolfie7873

    wolfie7873 Member

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    Northern's calculator has it at 140, so I guess I did it right.

    If they had told me in high school chemistry class what I could actually use this for, I would have enjoyed it so much more.
     
  9. Nosybear

    Nosybear Well-Known Member

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    Yeah, who'd have thought that after 40 years of neglect, I'd be thinking about moles and normal solutions again.
     

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