From England, flavors from this yeast vary greatly with the beer produced. The higher the gravity, the more winey the result. Beers over 16% ABV begin to taste less like beer, and more like fortified wines. With low gravity beers, this yeast produces a nice, subtle English ale-like ester profile. As the gravity increases, some phenolic character is evident, followed by the winey-ness of beers over 16% ABV. Most fermentations will stop between 12-16% ABV unless these high gravity tips are performed:
** Aerate very heavily, 4 times as much as with a normal gravity beer. Less oxygen dissolves into solution at high gravity.
** Pitch 3-4 times as much yeast as normal.
** Consider aerating intermittently during the first 5 days of fermentation. This will help yeast cells during a very difficult fermentation. Aerate with oxygen for 30 seconds or air for 5-10 minutes.
** Higher nutrient levels can allow yeast to tolerate higher alcohol levels. Use 2 times the normal nutrient level. This is especially important when using WLP099 to make wine and mead, which have almost no nutrient level to begin with.
** Do not start with the entire wort sugar at once. Begin fermentation with a wort that would produce a 6-8% beer, and add wort (it can be concentrated) each day during the first 5 days. This can be done together with aeration. This is mandatory if the reported 25% ABV is to be achieved.
From England. Malt character dominates at lower gravities.