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Yeast Questions

Hello everyone! I’m pretty new to brewing and have a few questions. I recently brewed Northern brewer’s houblonmonstre tripel IPA and after 4 weeks in bottles discovered no carbonation and a apple juice like taste. After doing some research, came to the conclusion that I had the bottles conditioning at a temperature that is too low which could cause both of these problems. I’m going to move the bottle to a dark higher temp location and give the bottles a little shake to get the yeast mixed back up. One of the question I haves is, is there a temperature that is too high for bottle conditioning? What I have read is a minimum of 70F, but no max temp. I’m planning on moving it to a closet that is about 75F, which I’m pretty sure that would be a good temp. Still would like to know a max temp just to further my knowledge in homebrewing. Also, I don’t use a yeast starter, instead two smack packs. I was told that should be fine for this beer, which is a stronger alcohol content beer. Does that sound sufficent? I guess the real question I’m trying to get at is, is it possible to use not enough yeast that when you go to bottle your beer there isn’t enough yeast to work with the sugar? I’m planning on doing a stronger beer here in the future (probably around 9-10%). Should I use three slap packs or even use two for fermentation and repitch with one more before bottling? Any information would be greatly appreciated.

75-85F for carbonating is a good range. You can go higher if you like, up to 100F, with no damage to the yeast, but I don’t think it would benefit the beer.

As a new brewer, I know the temptation to make big, strong beers can be overwhelming, but you will get much faster turnaround on beers in the 4-6% ABV range - shorter primary fermentation and faster carbonation, plus maybe a week in the fridge to settle the yeast, and you’re drinking good beer. Once you move into the 7+% range, the beer needs longer to be ready to bottle, takes longer carbing, and then likely needs to sit for weeks, if not months, to reach full potential.

On adding yeast at bottling - big beers, and those that sit in the fermenter for a couple of months prior to bottling, often need at least a little fresh yeast to carb in a reasonable amount of time. No need to use expensive liquid yeast or to match the primary yeast for bottling, just use some S-04 or US-05 instead.

Thank you for your fast reply. When you say s-04 or us-05 I’m guessing that is the dry yeast? Do you need to do anything with it before pooring it in or do you just poor it in and mix it up on bottling day?

My cousin and I have been brewing together and the tripel IPA was our fifth batch with a few of those being in the 4-6% range. We we’re just thinking a stronger beer for the long cold winter nights here in Minnesota. We understand that the stronger beers take much more time and patients.

Yes, dry yeast. Some add it directly to the bottling bucket, or you can rehydrate first (that’s what I do).

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