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Old 08-22-2012, 02:54 AM   #1
iannerney
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Hi everyone!

This weekend I brewed my first batch of beer (a gorgeous looking Irish red ale) and I am concerned that the temperature of my house is too hot for the yeast I am brewing with. The wort is fermenting around 78-80 degrees, when my yeast recommended a temperature between 60 and 72 degrees. Could that temperature difference cause any problems with the beer? If so, are there any remedies?

Thanks!
Ian

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Old 08-22-2012, 03:00 AM   #2
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Looks like a beautiful beer. Temperatures that high can certainly lead to off flavors. Look into creating a swamp cooler and getting those temps down a bit.

Check out this thread by another new brewer for some details: http://www.homebrewtalk.com/f39/something-help-newer-brewers-swampcoolers-349164/

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Old 08-22-2012, 03:04 AM   #3
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It will be fine. Enjoy it.

Eventually, you'll want to improve your beer. Temperature control is paramount. The best way is to get a used chest freezer and a temp controller (Johnson Controls, Ranco). This will vastly improve your beer and allow you to make lagers, too.

It'll be fine. See ya round the campus.

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Old 08-22-2012, 03:10 AM   #4
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My first beer was fermenting in my closet at around 75 degree ambient temperature. You can assume that during the most active part of fermentation the actual temp of the wort will be 8 - 10 degrees hotter. My beer was actually fermenting around 83 - 85 degrees and it came out drinkable but definitely not something that I was proud of. Typically the most important time to control your temperature is during the most active part of fermentation (4 - 5 days after pitching yeast), after that letting it get a little warmer will help keep the yeast active so they can clean up after themselves.

One thing you may want to do is leave it in the primary fermenter for a while and give the yeast a chance to clean up after themselves. I'm not sure how effective that will be but it couldn't hurt.

I can't describe the taste but it was off. I just brewed my first all-grain batch and using my swamp cooler for the first time and while my fermentation took a while to start (didn't start getting activity in the airlock until ~ 38 hours), it's steadily getting better and hopefully the beer will have a nice, clean taste.

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Old 08-22-2012, 03:17 AM   #5
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Which yeast was it? I made an strong IRA with wlp004 one time, and it got away. It smelled and tasted like rotten apricots when I grudgingly bottled it. I hated it so much I left it alone for 6 months, and it had become excellent, a little fruity. What I'm telling you is the same thing passedpawn said - it will be find. At the worst it will be drinkable, at the best it will be great!

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Old 08-22-2012, 03:21 AM   #6
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Quote:
Originally Posted by bottlebomber View Post
Which yeast was it? I made an strong IRA with wlp004 one time, and it got away. It smelled and tasted like rotten apricots when I grudgingly bottled it. I hated it so much I left it alone for 6 months, and it had become excellent, a little fruity. What I'm telling you is the same thing passedpawn said - it will be find. At the worst it will be drinkable, at the best it will be great!
You reminded me too, a lot of more experienced brewers have stories about beers that were ok or disappointing and they left it alone for months only to come back to it and taste one of the best beers they have ever brewed. If it's not what you wanted then leave it alone for a few months and try one then.
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Old 08-22-2012, 12:19 PM   #7
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Thanks for your advice, everyone! Since this brew has been fermenting for 4 days now, I think I'll extend the primary fermentation a few weeks (just in case). I'll also make sure to use a swamp cooler for my next batch.

As for the question about the yeast, I used Wyeast American Ale II for this batch.

I'll be sure to let you all know how it turns out.

Thanks again!
Ian

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Old 08-22-2012, 01:58 PM   #8
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Quote:
Originally Posted by iannerney

As for the question about the yeast, I used Wyeast American Ale II for this batch.
Oh, you'll be fine. I had that yeast in a PTE clone once and it spiked to 85 degrees. I got it cooled down over a few hours, it still was very neutral. I really like that yeast, actually.
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Old 10-10-2012, 12:37 AM   #9
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Hello again!

Just to give you all an update, after a month and a half in the making I had my first home brew the other day and I was quite happy with it! It could have used a bit mor hoppy bitterness to it, but it had great color and tasted like... well... beer!

I've since acquired a chest freezer for temp control and I've started a small batch of cider.

Thanks again for the advice!
Ian

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