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Thread: Bottle Conditioning Aged Beer

  1. #1
    Join Date
    Sep 2017
    Galway NY

    Bottle Conditioning Aged Beer

    Hello everybody,

    I'm new here, posting for my first time. I'm getting ready to bottle a Maple Porter that has been ageing for about 1.5 years in a tank with oak added. The alcohol content is around 13% abv. I would really like to bottle condition this, however I'm not sure how much yeast I would need to add to get it to carbonate. I also worry that the alcohol is too high to even support yeast. I replaced the water in the initial brew with Maple Sap that had been condensed down a bit, so it's a very dry beer. My sister owns a winery and recommended using a champagne yeast, as it does well in a higher alcohol beverage, but I don't want to forsake the porter style. One option I have is to brew a fresh batch and blend them before bottling, in hopes that it would condition in the bottle, but once again I don't know if the alcohol would kill off the yeast too soon. Any advice would be greatly appreciated. Thanks!

  2. #2
    Join Date
    Oct 2012
    I've had really good luck with Safbrew f-2 for bottle conditioning high gravity beers. Its what I would use.

  3. #3
    Join Date
    Jan 2014

    Lallemand CBC-1

    My name is Caroline and I am the East Coast Manager for Lallemand Brewing yeasts. We have a yeast selected specifically for bottle conditioning, more info (including the technical data sheet) can be found here:

    We have also developed a bottle conditioning calculator specifically for the CBC-1, and it can be found here:

    To answer your question, in general - champagne yeast is pretty neutral and able to survive harsher environments. You would not be changing the flavor of your product. But not all champagne yeasts are ideal for beer conditioning.

    The innoculation rate for CBC-1 is very small for bottle conditioning, at just 10g of yeast per hL of beer. Feel free to email me with any additional questions you may have.

    Last edited by Lallemand Caroline; 09-22-2017 at 07:46 AM.

  4. #4
    Join Date
    Jul 2013
    Idyllwild, CA, USA
    I'd vote for CBC-1. I've used it in some pretty harsh sour beer and high-alcohol environments and it's always worked.

    Idyllwild Brewpub

  5. #5
    Join Date
    Aug 2005
    Torrance, CA, US

    High alcohol = danger

    I would be careful with trying to bottle condition anything over 10-11% abv. Many larger breweries have had issues with consistently getting carbonation right.

    I love the go get 'em attitude of some of the posters here, but I highly doubt that anyone here is doing it regularly with consistent success.

    Also, clparnin recommends a priming calculator, but it isn't any better than any of the others out there because it makes assumptions about current vols of CO2 in solution based on temperature which DO NOT work for barrel aged beer. Typically, the longer you age it, the less CO2 will be in solution. Michael Tonsmiere has one on his blog that allows you to input the current vols of CO2 assuming you have the equipment to test it.

    Most brewers conditioning barrel aged beers are doing a partial force carbonation and priming to get the last 0.5 vols in the bottle. This way, if it fails to re-ferment, you can still serve it. But this would require bottling line capable of handling carbonated beer.

    You can always take a small amount of the beer and do bench trials with different yeasts to see if it will work and then scale it up.

    Good luck!

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