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Isb Belgian Blonde Brew Temp

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redbeard

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Ive put down my belgian blonde from the big brewday fermenting with croz's 1388. i thought the ideal temp was 25+ but its been cool lately & sitting outside its been around 21. So put it in a garbo with some warm water, but that doesnt seem to stay warm long. For the 1st time, im actually thinking about changing my fermentor fridge to warm instead of cool :blink: Ive still got the strong ale to ferment, so would like to get that right. I was going to move it inside, but temps here are still low 20s. What you other ISB'ers doing ?
 

sstacey

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Yikes! :blink: That seems like a hot ferment to me.
I usually sit mine at aroud 18C, a little warmer is okay but I'd be cooling it if it were at 25.
 

Stuster

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I went mostly off the info according to the Belgian beer bible, Brew like a Monk(ey). They say that Duvel pitch the yeast at 16-18C, then let it rise to 26-29C over 5 days. I pitched it at about 16C outside, then I moved it inside after a day or so. It didn't get that high, but more like 24C. It finished in about a week, and I'm probably going to bottle it in early this week. I'll be doing more or less the same with the Golden Strong on the yeast cake. Then maybe a big Dark Strong. :chug:
 

sstacey

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I'm keen to hear how people go fermenting at over 25C.
Do you get a hot alcohol and/or solventy taste?
 

DJR

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I'm keen to hear how people go fermenting at over 25C.
Do you get a hot alcohol and/or solventy taste?
Depends on the yeast - a lot of the Belgians don't create fusels until a very high temp - e.g. Saison can go as high as 32C and not create fusels.
 

Stuster

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SPS, I certainly wouldn't try this with an English/Aussie/US/German yeast, but many (not all) Belgian yeasts do very well at higher temps. They don't produce fusels at these temps and usually no/little hot alcohol. I guess it's just that these are the optimal temperatures for these yeasts. So lagers like 10C, most ales like 18C, and these yeasts are happier in the mid-20s and above. If you keep them at 18C or so they will work, but they take ages to finish (like a 'normal' ale yeast would at 15C), and you get far fewer of the esters/phenolics that you want from these yeasts. It's not true for all Belgian yeasts though. I think it's WLP530/3787 (the Westmalle yeast) that needs to be kept a bit cooler, more like 18-20C. OTOH, the Dupont Saison yeast can go up to 35C with no trouble. :blink:
 

SpillsMostOfIt

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I fermented a Belgian Dark Strong with Wyeast 1214 a few months ago between 18-20degC and it has turned out a little ripper. I pitched a 1388 into a Belgian Golden Strong yesterday at 17degC and intend keeping it no higher than 20 if it gets there.

My reading (sorry, can't find any direct references right this minute) suggests that several of the Belgian breweries do let the temp climb as high as it wants, but the smart money is on not letting it get too high in the nanobrewery environment. In my sample space of *one* Belgian, this has proved to work out fine, but it seems that this is an area where you can expect your mileage to vary.
 

sstacey

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I think it's WLP530/3787 (the Westmalle yeast) that needs to be kept a bit cooler, more like 18-20C.
Stuster, you're right on the money. I was thinking about my experience with 3787 when I wrote that post.
I have heard that Saison Dupont has some solventy flavour. I'm not sure though, I'll try it when I am in Belgium in a weeks time to find out :super:

I have also had some slight solventy character from 1762, but I'm fairly sure that that was from under aeration (this can be a fickle yeast).

By far the worst Belgium strain I have tried is Ardennes. :wacko: Has anyone managed to tame this one? I am sure it has no relationship to those used in La Chouffe.
 

Stuster

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By far the worst Belgium strain I have tried is Ardennes. wacko.gif Has anyone managed to tame this one? I am sure it has no relationship to those used in La Chouffe.
I've had some good and some very bad batches with that yeast. I'm not sure about it, but I guess I'll give it a go again sometime. Other people talk about it as a workhorse strain. :unsure:

I'll try it when I am in Belgium in a weeks time to find out :super:
 

DJR

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I did the Strong with a good stirplate starter of Wyeast Scottish at 15C and it was finished in a few days, dropped pretty bright too. In bottles ready to drink probably about today-ish!

Then i dumped a Wee Heavy on the cake and that went from 1074 to 1020 in about 4 days :)
 

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