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Old 06-27-2010, 05:44 PM   #1
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Default same recipe, way diff results

I brewed a 10 gallon batch of Foreign Extra Stout and split them into 2 five ale pales. The OG was 1.073 and I didn't make a yeast starter or blow-off tube . One of the buckets kept on blowing the lid, it sounded like a shotgun blast! The other bucket blew the lid only occasionally. They both finished at 1.023 and tasted almost the same at ever step. Now that they're fully carbed, one of them just tastes sweet and like extract twang. Is that batch oxidized?

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Old 06-27-2010, 06:11 PM   #2
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Oxidation tastes like wet cardboard smells...

You could/should have blended to 2 together before kegging to get a consistant product. I've done this successfully before on 3 batches of the same recipe.

What was the attenuation of the yeast? By my calculations (using 75%), your FG should have been 1.018-19. If it tasted sweet it's because it wasn't done fermenting.

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Old 06-27-2010, 06:52 PM   #3
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I used White Labs Dry English Ale, which lists attenuation as 70-80%. Oxidation is out as a reason. I don't think the sweetness is from the lack of fermentation. The other batch is roasty as hell and more sweet and bitter than I want because the alcohol is lacking. They were both at 1.025 and no activity when I racked to secondary after 14 days. They both tasted almost identical on the day of bottling. 4 weeks later and one batch is crap.
I should have made a starter and blow-off tube, than it would have fermented to where I wanted. I debated on racking off of the trub and pitching some lavin ec-1118 to unstick it, but worried it would get too dry. I wish I would have.

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Old 06-27-2010, 06:56 PM   #4
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Something still sound fishy. There should not have been such a difference if it's a repeat recipe.

The sweetness is definitely due to underattenuation. Adding more yeast should help.

IMO, 1.025 is still too high for both brews. I would not have bottle/kegged with those numbers.

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Old 06-27-2010, 07:32 PM   #5
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From what I understand the gases and pressures built up by them during fermentation does have an affect on flavor profiles and other aspects of the final brew. It makes complete sense that there is a difference if one brew is different in the end.

What makes me wonder is why, assuming the batch was relatively homogenous when you transfered to the two separate fermentors, you ended up with two very different fermentations. It could be possible the bucket that kept blowing the lid ended up with a wild yeast or bacteria. You won't always notice a negative flavor change but could explain why it was so active compared to the other. It could be that when you pitched the yeast didn't get stirred in well and you ended up with a bunch more yeast in one fermentor than the other - that will definately change the flavor profile.

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Old 06-27-2010, 07:34 PM   #6
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...another good observation...

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Old 06-27-2010, 09:55 PM   #7
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Chuck_Swillery View Post
From what I understand the gases and pressures built up by them during fermentation does have an affect on flavor profiles and other aspects of the final brew. It makes complete sense that there is a difference if one brew is different in the end.

What makes me wonder is why, assuming the batch was relatively homogenous when you transfered to the two separate fermentors, you ended up with two very different fermentations. It could be possible the bucket that kept blowing the lid ended up with a wild yeast or bacteria. You won't always notice a negative flavor change but could explain why it was so active compared to the other. It could be that when you pitched the yeast didn't get stirred in well and you ended up with a bunch more yeast in one fermentor than the other - that will definately change the flavor profile.
That is very possible. I think the bucket that constantly blew the lid did not have as tight a seal as the other one. Or would it be tighter, letting less air in to create the cO2 build up? My first thought was a difference in the yeast, but that doesn't explain why it tasted uniform until after carb. I'm baffled and disappointed.
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Old 06-27-2010, 10:05 PM   #8
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Quote:
Originally Posted by homebrewer_99 View Post
Something still sound fishy. There should not have been such a difference if it's a repeat recipe.

The sweetness is definitely due to underattenuation. Adding more yeast should help.

IMO, 1.025 is still too high for both brews. I would not have bottle/kegged with those numbers.
In hindsight, I regret not pitching the Lavin ec-1118 when I wanted to. Fermentation is the weakest part of brewing skill set. Only one of my beers has finished at the FG I was shooting for. I bought a stirplate and 2000 ml flask to make starters, but ended up brewing on a whim because my friend and I both had the day off. My next brew, an American Wheat, is not high gravity, but needs to finish dry. Should I test it when I go to rerack and pitch more of the same yeast if it is more the .05 off?
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Old 06-28-2010, 12:21 AM   #9
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At .05 yes, at .005, no.

Why did you use Lavin ec-1118? It's not a beer yeast.

Lalvin EC-1118 (Prise de Mousse): This is the original, steady, low foamer, excellent for barrel fermentation or for working on heavy suspended pulps. It is one of the most popular wine yeasts in the world. It ferments well at low temperatures, flocculates well, and produces very compact lees. It is good for Champagne bases, secondary (bottle) fermentations, restarting stuck fermentations, and for late harvest grapes. It is also the yeast of choice for apple, crabapple, cranberry, hawthorn, and cherry wines. It has excellent organoleptic properties and should be in every vinter's refrigerator. Alcohol toxicity is 18% and it ferments relatively fast. It tolerates temperatures from 39-95° F. It is not, however, tolerant of concurrent malolactic fermentation.


I usually don't worry about hitting the recipes OG/FG unless I'm going for a clone, then only slightly.

You have to look at recipes as notes..."this is the gravity reading I got" and such.

If your gravity is high then you can add some top off water to get closer to the OG.

For FG I look at the attentuation of the yeast. Most of the time I look for the OG to drop 75%. I divide the last 3 numbers of the OG by 4 for a projected FG. When it's in that neighborhood it's done.

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Old 06-28-2010, 02:54 AM   #10
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ec-1118 is great for unsticking fermentation because it has very little nutritional needs, so I've been told

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