Sunday, March 29, 2009

fourth brew (Belgian witbier), part 6

Airlock bubbling had slowed to a few times a minute and I'm just tired of having it in the primary (still krausen on top, though) so I racked the Belgian witbier to the secondary. Gravity is now at 1.017; expected final is 1.014.

Flavor is, frankly, disappointing. I am having trouble characterizing the bothersome aspects but the closest may be the green apple and cidery flavors of acetaldehyde. This is a common fermentation byproduct and it may be that this yeast strain produces a large amount, or just that the beer is too young. A solution to this, I see now that I've racked, may be to keep the beer on the yeast. Yay. Another may be to maintain a warmer temperature during conditioning. I can give that a try. Rousing the yeast can help; racking would have done that.

I have read that diacetyl production is encouraged by aeration during fermentation (which is not on its own a bad thing). That would make sense, given the prodding I've had to do while in the primary. Diacetyl may taste buttery. I don't know that it's jumping out at me, but it could also be a factor. The solutions during fermentation are the same as for acetaldehyde.

Well, I do hope this cleans up over the next week or two. It's sure not what I was hoping for.

Gah! And now my camera is going berserk too. Well, I guess it's been a good run with the old Canon A80. Must be time for an EOS-1Ds Mark III!

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