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Exploding Belgian

Started by SureLook, October 21, 2020, 09:58:32 PM

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Debating doing a strong Belgian in the next couple of weeks (approx. 8-9%  abv) and have read in other forums that you 'need' to use strong champagne bottles or old 330 ml belgian bottles or else the bottles will explode during conditioning. Any truth in this?

I can see the logic of stronger beer means more CO2 means potentially more pressure inside the bottle which may lead to explosions (maybe) but I'm a bit sceptical.


I have brewed plenty of 8%+ beers and never had a bottle explode. I also just use the standard 2/3 cup of table sugar to batch prime, regardless of style of beer. If you are really concerned, you could reduce the sugar a bit but just because a beer has a stronger ABV, does not mean it makes more CO2. The yeast converts the sugar, it does not create more sugar. So long as you hit your target FG, or thereabouts, I don't see why the beer would become over carbonated.


Usually Belgian beers traditionally have higher carbonation that other styles and so are more susceptible to exploding. If you're bottle conditioning and hoping to reach that higher level of carbnation then use the thicker glass bottles to prevent from the bottles exploding.
NHC President


I've bottled every style of Belgian except sours in regular O'Hara's style 500 ml bottles. Never had any problems.
For sours or Brett beers I'd go with the thicker bottles. If you keg, you could force carbonate to whatever level you want and fill the bottles with a beer gun.

mr hoppy

It's the vol of Co2 that's the issue, not the the abv so anything strong enough for a weisen should be fine. I usually use german swing top type bottles but a lot of english family brewery type ales are / were bottled in heavy bottles. I bottled an orval clone in fullers bottles a while back but haven't tested the current ones to destruction.

When I bottled a lambic earlier this year I stuck all of the bottles I'd accumulated for it on the digital scales I use for hops and malt. i used the ones that seemed heavy (mostly over 700g. for a 700ml bottle iirc) and discarded the thin ones. Seems to have worked

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