Fermentation continuing after 10 days???

Discussion in 'Homebrewing' started by hojo813, Aug 3, 2018.

  1. hojo813

    hojo813 Initiate (1) Aug 3, 2018

    Just a question. I pitched London III Wyeast on a 5 gallon batch of a NE IPA I came up with. It started fermenting at less than 24 hours. Like it was supposed to. Everything was looking good when I went on vacation. Left for the beach afterwards and just got back. My friend kept an eye on it. Had a blowoff tube on just in case. Forgot to take a gravity reading in all the commotion of packing. It was at 76 degrees the first 5 days and settled back to about 73. Krausen has fallen but there are still tiny bubbles on top that keep forming like in the beginning of fermentation. Solution on airlock is completely on the right chamber and bubbles esacape every minute or so but not continuously. Is it ok??? This has never happened before. First time using this yeast as well. I'm supposed to put into secondary fermentation on Sunday evening. As that is around 14 days since I let it sit 24 hours before pitching. I'm a little concerned it was too hot going into fermentation anyway as my wife was paranoid to let me run fans on it for 10 days. It is in the basement setting on concrete so I thought that might help. It has been at 74 degrees since I got back Wednesday night. This has never happened in the 2 years ive been brewing and I am freaking out... I would appreciate some feedback.
     
  2. VikeMan

    VikeMan Meyvn (1,439) Jul 12, 2009 Pennsylvania

    Regarding the high fermentation temperatures, you may end up with elevate esters and fusel alcohols. There are too many factors to say for sure. Hopefully the 76F you mentioned was the wort temp and not the ambient temp. If it was ambient, the wort would have got even hotter, although sitting on the basement floor may have mitigated that.

    Anyway, how does it taste?
     
  3. hojo813

    hojo813 Initiate (1) Aug 3, 2018

    Sorry 76 was the wort temp. My basement will not go above 74 ambient even in the hottest summers in VA. Haven't tasted it yet. I'm too afraid to open it and find out I've wasted my time and money. Fusel is what I'm worried about. I'm just wondering why it's still fermenting. 7 days is the most I've ever had with IPAs
     
  4. hojo813

    hojo813 Initiate (1) Aug 3, 2018

    I should have mentioned that I had my friend add 1oz of hops after the krausen had fallen to try the biotransformation. Could that be a factor?
     
  5. VikeMan

    VikeMan Meyvn (1,439) Jul 12, 2009 Pennsylvania

    My advice is to just rip off the bandaid.

    It's probably finished fermenting. It's probably off gassing CO2.

    Well, the hops could provide nucleation points for off-gassing, but they probably didn't cause a slow fermentation (which I doubt you actually had).
     
  6. hojo813

    hojo813 Initiate (1) Aug 3, 2018

    so if it tastes ok do you think I can rack into the secondary on sunday? I have a massive dry hop schedule for 6 days (it is a NEIPA after all) before bottling...I am a very cautious brewer, especially since this is my first recipe from scratch!
     
  7. VikeMan

    VikeMan Meyvn (1,439) Jul 12, 2009 Pennsylvania

    I would think so.
     
  8. JackHorzempa

    JackHorzempa Poo-Bah (3,569) Dec 15, 2005 Pennsylvania
    Premium

    There is no need to transfer to a secondary here and I would recommend that you don't conduct this step. Just add the dry hops to the primary and after your chosen dry hopping contact time is up package the beer.

    Cheers!
     
  9. hojo813

    hojo813 Initiate (1) Aug 3, 2018

    Why wouldn't you recommend that step? I need to do that for my Depth Charge hopper so I don't have 4oz of pellets floating around. More knowledge from experience always helps though
     
  10. JackHorzempa

    JackHorzempa Poo-Bah (3,569) Dec 15, 2005 Pennsylvania
    Premium

    Transferring from a primary to a secondary has a couple of issues:
    • Introduction of 'extra' air (oxygen) which increases the oxidation aspect
    • Potential increased risk of contamination/infection
    The only time I conduct a transfer to a secondary is when I absolutely have to. For example when I secondary/lager my lager beers.

    I personally just dry hop in my primary (a plastic bucket) and thereby mitigate exposure to 'extra' air (oxygen).

    I am unfamiliar with what a Depth Charge hopper is. When I dry hop in my primary (bucket) I simply place the hop pellets within a sanitized muslin bag which is weighed down my sanitized glass marbles.

    Cheers!
     
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  11. pweis909

    pweis909 Poo-Bah (1,715) Aug 13, 2005 Wisconsin
    Premium

    You did not say that you have been checking gravity. That is how I would assess whether it is still fermenting as opposed to off gassing. If your grav readings continue to decline, you are still fermenting. The most likely reason? I’d want more info but yeast health comes to mind. Consider yeast age, pitch size, whether a starter was involved, how you oxygenated, whether fermentation temps were appropriate. Lots of potential contributing factors.
     
  12. hojo813

    hojo813 Initiate (1) Aug 3, 2018

    I used to do the exact same thing. But I felt the hop flavor and aroma wasn't as strong as they could be. I have a good siphon system that has virtually no oxygen and no contamination in I don't know how many brews. Here's a link to what I was talking about. It really hops up your dry hops!

    https://www.northernbrewer.com/prod...Qk02nfDjXZRmXD4Z2KfDEmkd3P3vXSaEaAllKEALw_wcB
     
  13. Prep8611

    Prep8611 Aspirant (228) Aug 22, 2014 New Jersey

    Risking oxygenation when transferring.
     
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  14. dmtaylor

    dmtaylor Initiate (186) Dec 30, 2003 Wisconsin

    YES. THAT IS THE FACTOR.

    Hops are slightly fermentable. If you have a lot of hops in there, fermentation can continue slowly for a long time. Perfect example: I thought my last batch was stuck and I was ready to dry hop it and then package it up. Then I added the dry hops. Then I noticed a krausen had re-formed on top and it was fizzing and I was like OMG it's going again, which I was kind of happy about because FG prior to that was very high like 1.020. I had to wait 6.5 weeks from brew day to packaging day for it to quit fizzing and for the beer to go clear. FG=1.013. For those of you who keg, congratulations, you can just let it ferment the last bits in your keg. But I bottle. If I had bottled it up after just a week or two like normal, I would have had explosions.

    Cheers.
     
  15. hopfenunmaltz

    hopfenunmaltz Meyvn (1,362) Jun 8, 2005 Michigan

    Hops have enzymes that can break down some of the non-fermentables into fermentable sugars. Pro brewers have seen the gravity go up when dry hopping.

    On the oxidation thing, with CO2 and a keg set up one can minimize it by doing closed transfers into a purged keg.

    One runs the risk of infections and oxidation at every step. Try and minimize the steps, try and minimize the chances of infections and O2 when you do have to transfer.
     
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  16. EvenMoreJesus

    EvenMoreJesus Crusader (745) Jun 8, 2017 Pennsylvania
    Premium Trader

    Well . . . hops certainly have bound fermentables in the form of glycosides, but your yeast needs glucosidase enzyme activity to cleave the sugar from the aglycone. Most strains of Saccharomyces cerevisiae don't have that activity, with the exception of diastaticus strains, and even then it is maltotriose specific, so it wouldn't cleave glycosides. Other than that, there's nothing that I've ever heard of that makes hops fermentable. If that was the case, I wouldn't be able to package my double dry hopped NEIPAs in under a week.
     
  17. hojo813

    hojo813 Initiate (1) Aug 3, 2018

    It's just co2 folks. FG has been the same for over 36 hours. Bubbles not rising anymore just collecting on top and popping. Airlock has settled. I will still wait until Monday to rack just to be certain. Tastes and smells amazing. Cant wait to dry hop the hell out of it. Thanks for everyone's input. Last time I Brew right before going out of town.
     
  18. hopfenunmaltz

    hopfenunmaltz Meyvn (1,362) Jun 8, 2005 Michigan

    Did you even read what I wrote? There was a good talk covering this and other dry hop related items at HomebrwCon. They cited the studies behind this. Alagash and OSU, presented at CBC 2017.

    And this.
    https://onlinelibrary.wiley.com/doi/pdf/10.1002/j.2050-0416.1941.tb06070.x
     
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  19. pweis909

    pweis909 Poo-Bah (1,715) Aug 13, 2005 Wisconsin
    Premium

    Maybe 1% fermentable sugars by weight?
    https://onlinelibrary.wiley.com/doi/pdf/10.1002/j.2050-0416.1953.tb06204.x
    So if you use 1 lbs of hops, you are adding about 5 grams of sugar. Check my arithmetic but I don't think fermentation is the likely culprit. I think it is more likely that dry hops create CO2 nucleation points which can stimulate off-gassing.
     
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  20. EvenMoreJesus

    EvenMoreJesus Crusader (745) Jun 8, 2017 Pennsylvania
    Premium Trader

    Would certainly love to see that study, but my response was primarily to @dmtaylor. However, the study that you linked had some very important things to say in the summary, including this:

    (1) The optimum conditions for the laboratory extraction of diastase from hop-cones have been determined. The process involves the use of peptone, as an agent for binding the hop tannin which, otherwise, would prevent the removal of the diastase. The peptone must be present in the medium from the commencement of the extraction. Brown and Morris in their experiments with hop diastase used hide-filings as tannin-binding agent, but we were unable to reproduce their results with this substance, and we recommend peptone as being much superior for this purpose.

    and this:

    (3) The observation of Brown and Morris that in hops considerable proportion of the saccharifying enzyme is located in the seeds has been confirmed, since we have demon strated the saccharifying activity of extracts of hop seeds, and we have also found in the cases of three seedless hops which we examined that the saccharifying activity was less than half that of normal seeded hops.


    I think a very important aspect of that study is this:

    The free sugars present in hops are largely extracted by boiling wort and thus contribute to the total of fermentable carbohydrates. Very little work on the nature of hop sugars has, however, been recorded, and indeed, no systematic study appears ever to have been carried out.

    Which means that the other sugars that the study references are bound. An interesting study, yes, but, as you've said, dry hops are very unlikely to contribute additional sugar to a fermentation.
     
  21. pweis909

    pweis909 Poo-Bah (1,715) Aug 13, 2005 Wisconsin
    Premium

    I was just looking for an estimate of fermentable sugars in hops as a first approximation to how much fermentable sugar could be contributed in a dry hop. It's small, and that doesn't even consider that extraction may be limited. I suppose yeast might also produce cellulase enzymes (googling suggests this, but I didn't read the articles so might be taking something out of context) which can break down more of the plant matter, but experience with hop sludge suggests this would be a very slow process at best and is not contributing much to beer.
     
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  22. hopfenunmaltz

    hopfenunmaltz Meyvn (1,362) Jun 8, 2005 Michigan

    OK on the reply to Dave, assumed it was to me.

    Breweries are finding increased ABV, and Diacetyl with dry hopping. The AHA seminars are not up on the website yet.

    If you do some searches you can find that some information is out there.

    https://discussions.probrewer.com/showthread.php?65752-Active-Fermentation-Dry-Hop-pH-and-the-creep

    Edit
    https://www.johnihaas.com/library/hop-science-newsletter-october-2017/

    Alagash and OSU
    https://www.craftbrewersconference.com/wp-content/uploads/2017_presentations/Tom-Shellhammer_02.pdf
     
    #22 hopfenunmaltz, Aug 5, 2018
    Last edited: Aug 5, 2018
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  23. dmtaylor

    dmtaylor Initiate (186) Dec 30, 2003 Wisconsin

    Sometime in the next few days I am going to find time to listen to the new Master Brewers podcast episode 98 which I believe *might* go into this in a little more detail. A previous episode touched on it briefly as well. At this time I'm not sure if it's the enzymes, or sugars, or both, or neither. You guys can argue all you want, I'm outta here, for the time being anyway.

    http://masterbrewerspodcast.com/

    EDIT: Dang, @hopfenunmaltz, we were looking at the same stuff at the same time apparently. Odds?
     
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  24. EvenMoreJesus

    EvenMoreJesus Crusader (745) Jun 8, 2017 Pennsylvania
    Premium Trader

    Neat stuff, fellas. Thanks for sharing.
     
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  25. pweis909

    pweis909 Poo-Bah (1,715) Aug 13, 2005 Wisconsin
    Premium

    I'll give it a listen, and I'll check out the homebrewcon info when it is posted, and also the links posted here. Sounds like there is some interesting info that will be news to me.
     
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  26. dmtaylor

    dmtaylor Initiate (186) Dec 30, 2003 Wisconsin

    As a bottler and natural conditioner, I'm sure glad I'm a patient brewer and can recognize when I have a stuck fermentation, in regards to my recent experience described up above. I read all this stuff about "hop creep" now only after-the-fact, and it's totally consistent with my experience.

    "Practical Considerations: What does this mean to you?
    •Over-attenuation as a result from dry-hopping can lead to dangerous CO2 levels in the package
    •Relevant to all brewers that dry-hop and leave ANY yeast in the package"

    Cheers all, and happy learning.
     
  27. EvenMoreJesus

    EvenMoreJesus Crusader (745) Jun 8, 2017 Pennsylvania
    Premium Trader

    Although these experiments were interesting, the information contained is by no means definitive as the OSU experimental design involved only pelletized Cascade hops.
     
  28. dmtaylor

    dmtaylor Initiate (186) Dec 30, 2003 Wisconsin

    I've heard (from a friend who already listened to the podcast) that different hops will have different impacts. Some do nothing, but most do something. Personally, I had used Palisades to dry hop mine.... and I don't think I'll use that again as a dry hop, kind of a weird one.
     
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  29. dmtaylor

    dmtaylor Initiate (186) Dec 30, 2003 Wisconsin

    Update. Okay, so here's a nutshell-summary of what I've gathered from the podcast and a couple things I have read so far. OSU, Allagash, and Bell's have worked together to test the enzymatic effects of dry hops. What they've found is that hops, just like malts, contain enzymes that will break down complex sugars into simpler sugars, which will work even at cold temperatures, such that dry hopping in the presence of yeast can have significant (and probably unintentional) effect on ABV and attenuation. [Aside: It is also hypothesized that *perhaps* this is even a reason why dry hopped beers seem to get sweeter over time -- if the yeast is filtered out, but hop enzymes are still present, some complex sugars can be broken down yet left unfermented in the package!] Knowing the FACT that hops contain enzymes, we can keep an eye on this effect, changing the way we dry hop if necessary, to keep things under control.

    For those who dry hop before the end of primary fermentation, you probably won't notice anything different. But for those who wait until primary is totally complete and beer is beginning to clear, etc., when dry hops are added at that point, it will typically kick off refermentation, so we need to be cognizant and perhaps should even account for this in recipe formulation, etc., if desired.

    They've tested at least 20 different hop samples of all different varieties and ages, and all act a little bit differently. They found that even 3-year-old hops stored at room temp (Centennial, specifically) contained these enzymes and sometimes had an effect. Yet on the other end of the spectrum, they also found hops that have virtually no effect (specifically Citra was cited).

    So.......... Personally, I'm certainly going to monitor gravity when dry hopping in future, AND.... I'm even going to use dry hopping as my new awesome tool for unsticking a stuck fermentation!!!! It sure as hell worked on my maibock already, that sucker was stuck, then I dry hopped, and whammo, hit my intended FG. And all due to "The Freshening Power of Dry Hops". Magic. Seriously, Google it:

    http://lmgtfy.com/?q=the+freshening+power+of+hops

    Learn something new every day! Cheers all.
     
    #29 dmtaylor, Aug 8, 2018 at 12:40 AM
    Last edited: Aug 8, 2018 at 12:46 AM
  30. riptorn

    riptorn Initiate (56) Apr 26, 2018 North Carolina
    Trader

    Thanks for going over the high points of the podcast, easy to read and succinct assessment.

    And thanks for the tutorial for how to to do a google search...man, opened up a whole new world :slight_smile:
     
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  31. riptorn

    riptorn Initiate (56) Apr 26, 2018 North Carolina
    Trader

    If yeast is not filtered, could the quote above suggest that mash efficiency might be inversely proportional to the effect certain hops might have in affecting ABV, and attenuation?

    That sounds like good reason to consider a refractometer.
     
  32. VikeMan

    VikeMan Meyvn (1,439) Jul 12, 2009 Pennsylvania

    Mash Efficiency <> Fementability
     
  33. Mothergoose03

    Mothergoose03 Poo-Bah (2,225) May 30, 2005 Michigan
    Premium

    Too many double IPAs do seem sweet (but not all), and this has been the reason that I stopped ordering them at breweries. To me it isn't a sugary sweetness, but I can't come up with a descriptor to characterize it. So now that I know this, and I'll begin to check menu descriptions to see if dry-hopping is a part of that beer's make-up. Thanks for the info.
     
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  34. riptorn

    riptorn Initiate (56) Apr 26, 2018 North Carolina
    Trader

    Sounds like "yes".
     
  35. riptorn

    riptorn Initiate (56) Apr 26, 2018 North Carolina
    Trader

    ...and maybe whether it's filtered? (to late to edit)
     
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  36. ssam

    ssam Aspirant (274) Dec 2, 2008 California

    This might be a stupid question, but I've wondered about it a while. Wouldn't hop particles introduced via dry hop already augment the specific gravity or the refract index? SG is just density relative to water, so adding solids should increase that right? Hops must catch some light so brix would be affected too. Does this make sense or does it really need to be a dissolved sugar to change the gravity?
     
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  37. VikeMan

    VikeMan Meyvn (1,439) Jul 12, 2009 Pennsylvania

    Actually I was saying that Mash Efficiency is "not equal to" Fermentability, i.e. they are mostly unrelated. I wouldn't expect mash efficiency to have an impact on how much dry hopping might affect ABV (by way of low fermentability becoming high fermentability due to the hops).
     
  38. dmtaylor

    dmtaylor Initiate (186) Dec 30, 2003 Wisconsin

    Specific gravity only measures dissolved compounds. It's the classic poodle in the swimming pool argument: If you throw a dozen live poodles into a swimming pool, the specific gravity of the water is still 1.000.
     
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  39. JackHorzempa

    JackHorzempa Poo-Bah (3,569) Dec 15, 2005 Pennsylvania
    Premium

    I generally prefer 'single' IPAs over double IPAs for the reason you describe. I use the term "cloying sweetness" to describe this situation.

    Cheers!
     
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  40. VikeMan

    VikeMan Meyvn (1,439) Jul 12, 2009 Pennsylvania

    But if you throw too many poodles in, it will be hard to use your hydrometer.
     
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