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Any downside to bottling barley wine after three weeks?

OG = 1.095. I did a forced fermentation and determined FG should be 1.023. Beer after three weeks is at the target FG, and I’d like to bottle while yeast is still viable instead of waiting and having to repitch. Any reason to wait?

Other info: Wyest 1056 with 5 gallon starter, aerated with oxygen for 2 min before pitching and again for 1 min after 24 hours, fermented at 68F.


Like the O.P., I’d like to avoid the extra time and complications of adding more yeast, and bottle direct after primary. My typical mode has been to do a long ageing in a carboy, and while the flavor has been great, carbonation has not always arrived at perfection. Plus I’d like to sample as it ages… not after.

Can anyone report on side by side tests?

I’m thinking of going a couple extra weeks in primary, after FG is hit, to simulate a bit of bulk ageing and gain some clarity.

Obviously style comes into play - and I’ve got a mix of styles. A .075 bock and a .095 baltic porter made with WY2206, and a .090 Belgian Quad made with WL500, all in the primary, waiting for my decision…

My current plan calls for primary for five weeks, and then bottle. Normally I use speise from cast-out wort, but will use priming sugar to ensure better fermentability for these big guys. I’m so used to kegging but want some of that “old school” bottling quality for these special brews. If no one reports a side by side test… I guess I’ll have to do it!

Yeast viability depends on more than time. With a 1.095 OG I’d recommend pitching yeast at bottling no matter how long or short a time it’s been in primary.

+1 to denny. safale dry yeast will cost less than 5$. but on another note, i like to leave my big beers on the yeast at least 5 weeks, ive left them on the yeast for 7 weeks with no issues… maybe its not necessary but i am happy with my results. big beers need to be treated a little differently, and patience is key IMO

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