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Higher Temp Brewing ~80F?

I live in CA, and started brewing last November. I’ve done 3 batches so far with good success and am looking forward to brewing this summer too, but with some reservations… It gets HOT here in the summer and we usually keep the air at 78F, well above standard brewing temps.

Looking up the stats on different yeast I came across several kits that have max fermentation temps of 85F. NB’s Saison, Houblonmonstre Tripel IPA, Belgian Tripe, Oud Bruin de Table, are some of the ones that I have found.

I guess my question is will brewing at that temp produce to many off flavors? Thoughts? Suggestions?

Although the manufacture has that temp listed, the best beer probably will not be made by fermenting at that temp.

A simple tub of water with some frozen soda bottles will drop your temp 10-15*.

See my signature line for more ideas.

Saison is really the only type of beer that I’d be comfortable fermenting at that temp.

I don’t get it when people say they ferment saisons ‘hot’. I need do a side-by-side of one that was truly fermented at the upper end of the range and one of mine, but IME, it creates fusely messes that give you a headache.

I think part of the thought process probably had to do with the Dupont yeast/WL565, which until a few years ago, the only saison strain available. That yeast literally took an act of God to fully attenuate, so people raised the temperature up into the mid-80’s to try to coax out the activity (often with no success). Note I said raised the temperature.

I think the misconception amongst homebrewers is that you need to PITCH at that temperature. Again, IME, not a good idea. You will get fusels and unhappy yeast, that will have yeast diarrhea. My saisons I pitch at 66, then raise up after day 3 or so a few degrees per day into the low/mid 70’s. Most of them have turned out great, and the one’s that haven’t were likely not a result of fermentation schedule. Not to toot my own horn, but the ones I’ve had that have been ‘fermented hot’ have been farty, estery messes that give me a headache.

If you live in a warm climate (even if you don’t), take Hawk’s advice and put together a ferm chamber. Your beer’s quality will skyrocket. Chest freezer on craigs list, self build a temp controller, or if you’re lazy like me, buy one pre-wired.

I am in a similar situation as you. Our summers get hot, most days are in the 90s or over 100F. We keep the house temp under 76F usually. I use a 15 gallon rope handle tub filled with water about halfway up the carboy. I rely on the fermometer. I simply add frozen water bottles to the tub’s water to maintain a pretty constant temp. I can keep the fermometer’s temp reading under 70F no problem. Its simple and it works great for me. I have about 8 frozen water bottles.

This is a great use for those empty LME jugs, by the by.

Thanks for the replies!

Another suggestion that I have gotten was to make a swamp cooler by placing a wet t-shirt or towel over the carboy with a fan blowing on it.

[quote=“Tseb”]Another suggestion that I have gotten was to make a swamp cooler by placing a wet t-shirt or towel over the carboy with a fan blowing on it.[/quote]It needs to be sitting in a container of water so the shirt can wick it up and stay damp.

I’m currently using a 48 quart square Igloo chest for my fermenters. I place a piece of 2x4 on the bottom to offset the wheels. I ferment low 60’s and add 3 or 4 frozen 16-oz water bottles 3x per day. This is NOT a PITA as I once thought. The Igloo helps hold temp and also doesn’t sweat.

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