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What to do with the krausen?


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Our first whiskey mash (100% single malt barley) and fermentation is nearing completion (SG @ 1.01).  We ferment and plan to strip grain on.  The krausen on the top of our fermentation is about 8" thick.  Any recommendations of how to handle the krausen?  Do I use a shovel and remove it before I pump to the stripping still?  Do I wait for krausen to fall - it is so thick I don't think it will.  Thanks for any advice.

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I'm a little late to the responses here, but I have had this same cap thing happen many times, and just now jumped to the forum to see what others had done. When it falls to the bottom, it ferments out great, when it's on top, it can take much longer than your production schedule allows to ferment and often takes re circulation/agitation. A good way to test this is to test the SG/Brix the day before, then pump it into a stripping still and agitate without heat on and turn off, then check the next day to see if it's fermenting or if your SG/Brix has changed. Currently looking at agitators to be used in the fermenters.

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Kruasen and particulate aren't always the same thing. If a ferment is at a wonky temp it can suspend solids that otherwise wouldn't be and could make people feel it was still Krausened. Krausen is usually at a temperature and period of the ferment where the yeast are working efficiently and optimally. It normally wouldn't indicate a period of stalling or slow activity but one of comfort if that makes sense. All ferments can be sped up by increasing the temperature and/or manipulating gas levels but there is always consequences on carboxylic acid and ethanol "output"... it's just up to us to decide if those are consequences we want or not.



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