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Old 03-16-2006, 05:36 AM   #1
Dustin_J
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Default My first brew - Some help please

Hello,

I'm a newbie here and I'm wondering if I can get some help diagnosing what may or may not be a problem with a batch of beer. The recipe/procedure is as follows and is for an English Pale.

1lb 20Lcrystal malt- steeped at ~160degrees for 25 min.

6.6 lbs Muntons Plain Light DME

1.5 oz Kent Goldings (60 min) - All hops are whole
.3oz Kent Goldings (25 min)
.3oz Fuggles (25 min)
1oz Fuggles (5min)

White Labs #WMP005 RTP British Ale yeast.


Basically, the fermentation started well after about 12 hours, and slowed pretty substantially after 5 days. I then tasted the beer, which seemed somewhat harsh and a little "dirty". I noticed myself that the Fuggles smelled a bit dirty, but I don't pick up that smell in the beer at all, just the taste. The smell was actually very nice. After letting the beer sit for another two days, I sampled it again today and it seemed a bit less harsh, but still somewhat unpleasant.

I don't have a carboy for secondary fermentation, but I plan on letting the beer condition in the primary fermentation bucket for another 10 days or so, along with at least 2-3 weeks in the bottles. The beer has been fermenting at ~70 degrees for the last week, although there has been some temperature fluctuation.

Basically, I am wondering if I can expect this beer to mellow out much more and rid itself of the dirty flavor, or if that is possibly just a characteristic of using the Fuggles for flavoring and is something I'll have to deal with.

Thank you for any help you can provide.

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Old 03-16-2006, 05:49 AM   #2
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You'll be fine. First batch ever is sheer panic and down the road you'll notice for no reason at all. At 5-7 days its not going to taste what you expect but it is good to learn the tastes throughout the process. Even when it is time to bottle (10 days more would be fine) its still not going to taste like the end product but closer (flat & still maybe harsh).

Your next investment of many if you get into this should be a secondary fermenter. Not that much if local; probably $20. A secondary while not required will certainly help as most of us do not have sophisticated filtering systems. When you do bottle, pop 1 in the fridge at about 10 days to see how it's going but let them age in the lower 70's range. If the carbonation is in the higher range put em all in the fridge if you have the room. If not, is what it is...

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Old 03-16-2006, 06:06 AM   #3
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Time will cure everything, make sure that you keep everything sanitized. Did you get your rig at Brew and Grow in Livonia?

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Old 03-16-2006, 02:45 PM   #4
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Thanks guys, it's good to hear that the panic is probably unwarranted.

Gmeyers, I actually got all my equipment at Things Beer in Webberville, MI which is attached to the Michigan Brewing Co. building.

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Old 03-16-2006, 04:14 PM   #5
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The experience of most home brewers is that given enough time, almost anything in a bottle will be delicious. You may never go back to buying beer (except for company - why share?).

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Old 03-18-2006, 05:45 AM   #6
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I jut got to bottling my first beer and had a few freak outs that were (hoefully) for nothing...i wish you good taste in your brew.

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Old 03-18-2006, 01:11 PM   #7
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I remember my first batch. I was on the phone with my LHBS for over an hour while he walked me through the whole process. Everything will be fine. All you need to remember is SANITIZE SANITIZE SANITIZE!!! Other then that, Relax, Have a Home Brew.

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Old 03-18-2006, 02:32 PM   #8
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[quote=Dustin_J]Hello,

I'm a newbie here and I'm wondering if I can get some help diagnosing what may or may not be a problem with a batch of beer. The recipe/procedure is as follows and is for an English Pale.

1lb 20Lcrystal malt- steeped at ~160degrees for 25 min.

6.6 lbs Muntons Plain Light DME

1.5 oz Kent Goldings (60 min) - All hops are whole
.3oz Kent Goldings (25 min)
.3oz Fuggles (25 min)
1oz Fuggles (5min)

White Labs #WMP005 RTP British Ale yeast.


Basically, the fermentation started well after about 12 hours, and slowed pretty substantially after 5 days. I then tasted the beer, which seemed somewhat harsh and a little "dirty". I noticed myself that the Fuggles smelled a bit dirty, but I don't pick up that smell in the beer at all, just the taste. The smell was actually very nice. After letting the beer sit for another two days, I sampled it again today and it seemed a bit less harsh, but still somewhat unpleasant.

I don't have a carboy for secondary fermentation, but I plan on letting the beer condition in the primary fermentation bucket for another 10 days or so, along with at least 2-3 weeks in the bottles. The beer has been fermenting at ~70 degrees for the last week, although there has been some temperature fluctuation.

Basically, I am wondering if I can expect this beer to mellow out much more and rid itself of the dirty flavor, or if that is possibly just a characteristic of using the Fuggles for flavoring and is something I'll have to deal with.

Thank you for any help you can provide.



Hey Dustin you ever get you stuff from the Red Salamander in Grand Ledge?A lot better on prices than Things Beer I live in the Lansing area as well MBC used to have great beer but they've switched Brewmaster so manny time's it's hard to keep track last time I was there the beer was so sweet I could not drink it.


Anyhow check out The Salmander Carle's a good guy and will hook you up!Keep Brewing and stay cool.

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Old 03-18-2006, 02:45 PM   #9
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Porter fan


Hey Dustin you ever get you stuff from the Red Salamander in Grand Ledge?A lot better on prices than Things Beer I live in the Lansing area as well MBC used to have great beer but they've switched Brewmaster so manny time's it's hard to keep track last time I was there the beer was so sweet I could not drink it.


Anyhow check out The Salmander Carle's a good guy and will hook you up!Keep Brewing and stay cool.
I didn't really look around too much when I was buying my stuff, I just noticed the prices at Things Beer were a bit cheaper than a lot of the online retailers, so I went there. I'll definately have to check out the Red Salamander when I'm brewing my next batch, which I have a feeling will be much sooner than later. Thanks for the suggestion

Cheers
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Old 03-18-2006, 02:57 PM   #10
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The harshness of the hops will mellow out in a couple of months.

One of the guys already mentioned that one of the hardest things we do is NOT waiting long enough. We are always in a hurry to sample our brews.

I've been brewing since '93 and still sample along the way. Of course, I now know that I can hold off a little longer than most.

I'd highly recommend you buy yourself a carboy. And make sure it's a 6.5 gal size. They're usually about $2 more than the smaller ones. If you end up making a 5.5 gal batch you'll either have to dump some if it or you'll have kreusen all over the place...and that's against the law!!

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