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Honey Addition to Barleywine

I brewed a barleywine (my 1st) over the weekend.

Just yesterday I watched an older episode of Brewing TV where Dawson added a pound of honey at high krausen (after the yeast have done a lot of the hard work already) to help the beer finish low and to dry it out a little.

Has anyone else done this? How did you like the results compared to sticking with the traditional approach?

I’d guage that activity peaked for me yesterday and is just starting to slow. Am I too late if I wanted to do this?

It was the standard NB AG kit. My OG was 1.084.

I actually watched that episode very early this year when I brewed a Stormtrooper IIPA (recipe is on BYO and is great by the way) and was interested enough to try it. I bought a pound of buckwheat honey from our host here and dumped it in on day two of the fermentation. I did a bit of research and a lot of people prefer the safety of boiling the honey first or adding it to the boil to kill off wild yeast or bacteria but that drives off some flavor and aroma. Long story short, I brewed this in Feb (I think) and just had one last night and this beer is awesome! Hops are fading by now, honey is more subdued and the malty sweetness is coming forward leading it to age more like a Barleywine in the bottle. It was a bit much at first but has turned out terrific.

I say go for it!

No, you can add it anywhere along the line.

I did do this with my Christmas Ale this year and although I haven’t really tried it (except a hydro sample glass or 2) so I can’t really say if it dried out but it did finish 4 points lower than the last 3 batches that I made. Usually it ends at 1.014 with Wyeast 1028 and this one ended at 1.010

I added the honey after about 7 days of primary.

Plain sugar will do the same thing. There may be a slight flavor difference between honey and sugar, but in a strong flavored beer like a barleywine you probably won’t tell the difference.

Thanks guys…

I went ahead with the 1lb honey addition this evening.

Question #2: Is there any way to easily figure out what this addition technically “adds” to the OG?

My original OG was 1.084…now I’ve added a pound of honey. If I’d added it at the start what would that have brought my OG to? I’d like to be able to calculate ABV accurately when all is said and done.

Am I missing something obvious here?

Thanks al…

I believe a pound of honey will add 0.06 gravity points to a 5 gallon batch (assuming you diluted it into 1 quart of water to mix in.)

Someone please pitch in if I have my numbers confused.

Hi again -

Nope, I did not dilute the honey…just straight into the carboy.

So would that add .08 or so then, given that I didn’t dilute it at all?

[quote=“HaleBrewer”]Hi again -

Nope, I did not dilute the honey…just straight into the carboy.

So would that add .08 or so then, given that I didn’t dilute it at all?[/quote]

Assuming a PPG of 1.040, 1 Lb of honey in 5 gallons would raise the OG by 0.008.

This would give you a virtual OG of 1.092.

Beautiful. Thanks gregscu.

A quick sanity check should have had me realize the decimal misplacement earlier.

I’m going with 1.092 for record keeping then.

Thanks again.

just make sure the honey is completely done fermenting if you plan on bottling. I’ve run into that problem a few times.

Right on. I’m planning to secondary this one for several months, so I’ll be in the clear.

In what other instances have others added extra sugar or other fermentables post pitch? Any stories out there?

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