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Old 09-09-2012, 03:51 PM   #1
netshade
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Default Wyeast 1007 - Fermenting Way Too High

I finished up a simple Oktoberfest Ale w/ Wyeast 1007 in a starter. When I pitched the starter, the wort temperature was around 75 - and, I'll be honest, I was stupid and didn't bother reading about the temperature range for the 1007 (55F-68F). My own fault.

After around 24 hours of very active fermentation, I put in blow off tubes ( I also had a Dunkelweiss and an IPA that were fermenting around the 74-78 range, higher but appropriate for their yeast ) for all the worts I had going and noticed that the Oktoberfest was already putting off a fairly foul smell (burnt rubber). I googled what was up and came across this thread:

http://www.homebrewtalk.com/f163/wyeast-1007-german-ale-ruined-batch-138496/

I immediately moved the beer down to a my keg fridge, and tweaked the temp to get it down into a much more manageable range. My question is:

If it's already smelling bad, is it even salvageable? I'm a day in and smelling what I would deem to be the worst case scenario of the fermentation, but I'm hopeful that over time that will work off. Does anyone else have an experience like this where the first 24 hours did not go as planned, but the remainder of fermentation yielded a drinkable beer?



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Old 09-09-2012, 04:10 PM   #2
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Those first 12-24 hours of active fermentation are the most important. If you were at 78F+, the beer will certainly not have the characteristics of a true Oktoberfest. That said, I never, ever, ever, EVER ditch a batch before giving it some time. Who knows, perhaps it'll be great. Let it finish, carbonate/condition, then decide... and even then, throw in the back of a closet for a few months.



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Old 09-10-2012, 01:58 PM   #3
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1007 tends to have a sulfer smell and taste. Give it some extra time in primary and some extra conditioning in keg/bottles and it will go away.

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Old 09-10-2012, 02:14 PM   #4
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My very first batch several years ago was a Black Lager.

I fermented it at about 76 in the basement - I didn't know any better, and it was before I found this place for tips.

It was TERRIBLE

I had an apartment close to work at the time because my house was too far to drive every day. I bottled about 12 off the keg and took them there.

Fast forward a year, moving out of the apartment, found one bottle left in the back of the fridge. I opened the bottle to dump it - Dumped it into a glass instead. It. was. Outstanding. And all I had left was one bottle.

Don't give up

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Originally Posted by Ecnerwal View Post
What does the primary pressure gauge on the tank tell us? That's right, the temperature. Put it on a scale if you want to know how much is in it...
Put some duct tape over the gauge - Or better yet - Replace the high pressure gauge with a plug - High pressure gauges are useless!
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Old 09-24-2012, 02:30 PM   #5
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Thanks for the advice, all. I racked to secondary last night, and you all were absolutely right: don't act rashly.

The initial smell I was getting was replaced with a pronounced nuttiness that seemed okay for an Oktoberfest ( I had been drinking a few of that style in advance to get a feel for what was appropriate ). I think the smell might have been more pronounced, and there a few more esters than I think is probably right for what I was doing, but it's still early for the beer. Anyways, all is good.

For anyone else that ran into my problem, here's what I did:

The initial 24 hours ( as posted ) were fermenting at around 74-78. Fermentation required a blow off tube at this point, which is when I researched yeast range.
Replaced blow off with airlock, and placed in a fridge. Fridge air temperature was 40 degrees fahrenheit, let sit in fridge at this temperature for 1 day. ( Wort temp: 56F )
Took carboy out after 24 hours, let rest for 6 hours, then placed back in fridge. ( Wort temp: 54F )
I had a very simple "timer outlet" for a different project that I used as a poor man's temperature regulator ( something like this: http://www.lowes.com/pd_143158-95325-LW61204_4294858445_4294937087?productId=3126679 , alternating on and off hours) to get the temperature into the high 40s. ( Wort temp: 52F )
Tested wort temperature after a day, final wort temp for remainder of first two weeks before racking: 56F

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Old 10-16-2012, 02:15 AM   #6
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Final update: Tastes great.



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