Author Topic: Bottling Belgians...  (Read 4378 times)

Offline bobo1898

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Bottling Belgians...
« on: February 12, 2016, 06:21:23 PM »
I'm not too far off from bottling a quad. I've brewed other Belgians in the past and simply used standard 12oz or 22oz bottles. I read something recently, that this is a big no-no because these bottles aren't built for the pressure that builds up in Belgian beers.

This article stated that I needed to bottle in Belgian style bottles. This can be done in either 750ml or 375ml bottles.

Is this true? Are these bottles better shaped for higher pressure? Is it necessary? I've noticed that the price is almost double, even though the volume is practically the same.

I've never had a Belgian bottle bomb but I will admit that I've had gushers in some of the Belgians that I've made in the past.

My concern here is that because this is a quad, I will be saving some bottles for a year or more. Obviously, I'd rather not see my beer all over the floor.
PRIMARY
SECONDARY
ON DECK
   Wild Ale on Blackberries w/ Champagne yeast
   BA Sour Kolsch w/ Cherries
   Belgian Quad
SERVED/STILL ENJOYING
   Peach Cider
   Patersbier
   Wild Ale with Champagne yeast
   BA Espresso Milk Stout
   BA RIS
   BA RIS w/ bannanas, cinammon, almonds
   BA Gldn Strong

Offline bobo1898

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Re: Bottling Belgians...
« Reply #1 on: February 13, 2016, 08:59:32 AM »
The article was in BYO and here's the excerpt:

Before you start bottling, the first thing you need to procure are beer bottles. Regular 12-ounce or 22-ounce bottles are not appropriate for the job, since the higher pressure levels of Belgian ales will make these bottles explode.  Champagne bottles in the 750-ml size are a traditional choice; you can also downsize to the 375-ml champagne bottle (also known as a “split”).  Most homebrew shops carry champagne bottles, but for hefty prices. Look to spend $16 to $18 for a case of 750-ml bottles.

PRIMARY
SECONDARY
ON DECK
   Wild Ale on Blackberries w/ Champagne yeast
   BA Sour Kolsch w/ Cherries
   Belgian Quad
SERVED/STILL ENJOYING
   Peach Cider
   Patersbier
   Wild Ale with Champagne yeast
   BA Espresso Milk Stout
   BA RIS
   BA RIS w/ bannanas, cinammon, almonds
   BA Gldn Strong

Offline twhitaker

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Re: Bottling Belgians...
« Reply #2 on: February 18, 2016, 11:42:01 AM »
 If you can control your priming and resulting carb pressure you can bottle it any way you want. Just know that quad takes more sugar and time due to it's very heavy final gravity. If you use the same amount of prime sugar as regular  beer you should be fine in normal bottles, slightly undercarbed. If your recipe includes any extra carbing provisions, you may need more than regular bottles for protection.

 I found it took quad  a long time to build any pressure at all-  6-8  months in one batch which I primed "normally". In my opinion quad needs extra priming to reach full carbonation. Doing this may require heavy duty bottles .

 I have bottled  quad in the belgian style brown swing tops 500 ml. I believe they are made for wheat beer as that is traditionally highly carbonated. They are expensive but a great presentation for your long awaited prize brew. You wont be disappointed. Any premium brew of mine finds it's way into some of those. I also use the  poly 500 ml  bottles. They may split ( e.g. older ones ) but won't blow up like a bottle bomb with high pressure.  I've  had only one so far make a mess in the storage room.

Personally I now keg mine and bottle about 6 - 500 ml poly bottles per batch with double the normal amount of priming sugar, one rounded teaspoon per 500 ml. As long as you have surely come down to final gravity, you won't have overpressure.

Poly bottles allow you to gauge pressure by squeezing them.  Slight hardness  is good-getting there, rock hard is over pressured. Over pressure can be fixed with a quick twist of the cap over the sink.
 
I find with keg carbing the quad takes  wayyyyy longer than most other brews as well. Ah, a fresh batch of quad- lucky you- have fun and enjoy! CHEERS!
On tap: 1/2keg cream ale with corn grits
             1/4 keg-  Trappist Quad Ale w/ oak
Day 10 primary: West Coast I.P.A. with homegrown columbus hops 46 liters

Offline bobo1898

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Re: Bottling Belgians...
« Reply #3 on: February 19, 2016, 05:32:11 PM »
I found it took quad  a long time to build any pressure at all-  6-8  months in one batch which I primed "normally". In my opinion quad needs extra priming to reach full carbonation. Doing this may require heavy duty bottles .

Yeah I was looking to prime around 3 to 3.5 volumes of CO2 although I've seen 2.4 in some cases for Strong Dark Ales. My quad has been conditioning at around 45-50 degrees for the last two months but I'm going to bring it up to 75 for a few days (also the temp the bottles will sit at). I imagine that most of the residual CO2 will be gone after that, yeah? So 3-3.5 shouldn't be too extreme. To be safe, I'm definitely going to use the belgian bottles.

In terms of time to build pressure and fully carbonate: my final gravity is around 1.006. I'm also adding fresh yeast with the priming sugar. Does the high alcohol environment stunt the typical activity? Or is it the high carbonation level that it takes a while to develop? The highest ABV that I've brewed is 9%, which was an imperial IPA, and it took the typical 2-3 weeks to fully carbonate.
PRIMARY
SECONDARY
ON DECK
   Wild Ale on Blackberries w/ Champagne yeast
   BA Sour Kolsch w/ Cherries
   Belgian Quad
SERVED/STILL ENJOYING
   Peach Cider
   Patersbier
   Wild Ale with Champagne yeast
   BA Espresso Milk Stout
   BA RIS
   BA RIS w/ bannanas, cinammon, almonds
   BA Gldn Strong