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Impalanator

Bacon Stout gravity problem

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Hi all,
I am attempting to make a bacon stout and ran into my 1st issue. After two weeks of being in primary, the gravity is sitting at 1.028 (OG was 1.038). The temperature of the three stick on thermometers (a mr beer one, the mr beer registration freebie, and another one i had to buy for lager yeast) have been right at 70 degrees.

I started with a sticky wicket oatmeal stout recipe and added both packages of yeast per the instructions. I fried up 1/2 pound of slab bacon I got from a local butcher, crumbled it up, put it in a muslin sack (all sanitized), and added it to the primary after pitching the yeast and before putting the lid on. It is exactly 14 days but the gravity is only 1.028. The recipe on Mr Beer website indicates an ABV of 4.7% but it looks like I'm sitting at 1.3%. I sampled the contents of the hydrometer test tube after testing the gravity and it tastes pretty good. A decent hint of bacon in the taste and bacon aroma.

Sticky Wicket Oatmeal Stout

Any ideas?

Thanks,
Ed

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Can't offer any help but I love the topic! :gofish:

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A bacon beer, I wonder how that would taste. As for the high gravity, my guess would be due ot the bacon fat as well. And now you have me wondering what the PPG of bacon fat is, as well as wanting to eat bacon.

mmmmm bacon.

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Dchale,
That is exactly the article I used as a guide! I said I fried the bacon, but I really baked per instructions in the article (the dry hogging method) and dabbed out the rest of the fat. Although, I didn't use parchment paper, so maybe that was my problem. I could tell there was some fat still in there because it looked like oil on the top of the wort. I think next time, I will try the bacon extract method using natural spirits.

I'll test the gravity in a week and see if the bacon fat is just causing the yeast to be sluggish and requiring more fermentation time. If it's still at 1.028, looks like I'm stuck with a 1.3% beer :(.

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I would think its due to the amount of salt used in bacon. after 2 weeks the salt may have settled to the bottom and repitching now might give you the best chance.

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+1 to repitiching. You can do a forums search on that topic to find out more.

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"Photon Brewing" post=265126 said:

I would think its due to the amount of salt used in bacon. after 2 weeks the salt may have settled to the bottom and repitching now might give you the best chance.

I agree with repitching, but I don't think the salt would settle. It dissolves into solution and it's not going to fall out of solution and recrystalize unless the solution becomes super saturated or some kind of chemical reaction triggers that process. I don't think anything in the brewing process will do it.

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If you go with the bacon "dry hopping" method again maybe it would work better to wait until 5 -7 days before bottling to add the bacon.

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Update - I re-pitched a pack of S-33 by just sprinkling the dry yeast on the top of the wort. I did this on Monday 6/4 and just tested the gravity this morning. Gravity is now sitting at 1.016.

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I'm starting to wonder if my hydrometer is acting up. In order to get 4.7% out of this batch, the FG needs to be 1.002 which seems pretty low. When I tested the gravity this morning, I put the hydrometer in the test tube multiple times and the readings were way inconsistent. I wonder if I misread the OG, because that seems low to me as well. Is there somewhere on MR beer website that will tell me what the OG of stickey wicket should have been?

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"Impalanator" post=266807 said:

I'm starting to wonder if my hydrometer is acting up. In order to get 4.7% out of this batch, the FG needs to be 1.002 which seems pretty low. When I tested the gravity this morning, I put the hydrometer in the test tube multiple times and the readings were way inconsistent. I wonder if I misread the OG, because that seems low to me as well. Is there somewhere on MR beer website that will tell me what the OG of stickey wicket should have been?

Your fermentables are just the two cans of Sticky Wicket, right? If so, I doubt if you'll get 4.7% ABV. If you filled to the line, you should have had an OG of around 1.041. If you got a lower OG than that, you probably either overfilled a little, didn't get all the extract out of the cans, or made a mistake in measuring.

There are a couple of ways to make a mistake in measuring. You could measure without thoroughly mixing the wort (although if you're getting the sample from the spigot, that would most likely give you a higher than expected reading), you could measure after the yeast had started to work, or you could simply misread it.

If you made a 2.125 gallon recipe (8.5 qts), your actual ABV should come out to about 4%, with an OG around 1.041 and FG around 1.010. If you overfilled a bit or didn't get all the malt, you'd probably see something closer to 3.5-3.8% ABV.

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Great topic and sounds like a great beer to try. I love bacon and beer but I would never think of trying to make one. I just happen to have an LBK of Cooper's stout that's been fermenting for 1 week. Tonight I will crumble up 3 or 4 ounces of precooked bacon and dry hop (hog) it. I can't wait to see what happens. :laugh:

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Bpgreen - thanks. Good info. I did use 2 cans of the sticky wicket. I'm a little too attentive to the water level and getting the extract out of the cans. I probably misread the OG. As far as the ABV goes for this one, how did you come up with an OG of 1.041 and 4%? The MB details say ABV should be 4.7, but I don't know how accurate they are.

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"Impalanator" post=266916 said:

Bpgreen - thanks. Good info. I did use 2 cans of the sticky wicket. I'm a little too attentive to the water level and getting the extract out of the cans. I probably misread the OG. As far as the ABV goes for this one, how did you come up with an OG of 1.041 and 4%? The MB details say ABV should be 4.7, but I don't know how accurate they are.

I used Qbrew, which matches up with my experiences pretty closely. The Mr Beer estimates are a "best case" scenario and assume the extracts are much more fermentable than they really are.

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