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Old 06-28-2009, 05:04 AM   #1
BrandonB
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Default First batch, screwed up I think (too cold to pitch?)

Well, everything was going well on my first brew.

I got the wort in a bucket with ice water and it dropped temp QUICK! But I still thought I'd need more to get to 80* so I used 2 8lb bags of ice (saw it recommended in instructions and a book). Now I have ice-wort....

What do I do? Wait it out to get to pitch temp? Pitch it anyway? Throw it over the fence and start all over?

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Old 06-28-2009, 05:22 AM   #2
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wait, you added ice to your wort? if so this is never a good idea since ice is full of dormant bacteria waiting to breed in something like say, sugary nutritious water. you could boil it again to get the volume down and kill bugs, but of course then you will have to cool it again, but maybe add the ice to a bath outside of your kettle as opposed to in.

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Old 06-28-2009, 05:22 AM   #3
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What is your temperature now? It it's above 60 I'd pitch without any worries. If it's colder than that, you'll probably just have to wait for it to warm up a little for any yeast activity to occur, witch will most likely take 24 to 48 hours to occur anyway. Whatever you do, don't throw it "over the fence," it will probably be fine.

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Old 06-28-2009, 05:30 AM   #4
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hopsy, I was worried about the cleanliness of the ice, but seeing it in a few books and such I figured it'd be ok. With my luck, I doubt it.
I can't boil it again, I'm at 5 gallons and I have a 5 gal pot (for now).

And ottobrew, it is actually below 60*. Can I pitch the yeast, or do I need to wait for the temp to come back up? I'm still amazed at how it dropped so much.

The first time I brewed with some coworkers it took forever for the temperature to drop using essentially the same methods.

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Old 06-28-2009, 05:39 AM   #5
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Depends on how much lower. Are we talking like 35 or 40 degrees, or more like 55. If you're in the higher range just pitch. If you're really low duct tape a heating pad to the fermenter and let it heat up for a few hours.

Also, if you pitching a liquid culture that's still in the fridge, just throw it in there, you should be fine. If it's at room temp and you're really low (under 50) let the wort warm up so you don't shock the yeast. Hope this helps.

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Old 06-28-2009, 05:41 AM   #6
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I'd probably just pitch it. If you have liquid yeast, you might want to put it in the fridge for a short time so it doesn't get thermal shock hitting the cold wort.

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Old 06-28-2009, 05:42 AM   #7
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ugh, yep, its liquid yeast.

I guess I can just put hte lid on the bucket for the night and pitch in the morning?

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Old 06-28-2009, 05:50 AM   #8
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I'd pitch before heading off to bed. The yeast will get going, just more slowly. Waiting will just increase infection risk. How cold are we talking? 50? 35?

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Old 06-28-2009, 05:54 AM   #9
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49* Its icy!
ambient is 78* in that room, 72* in the room i plan on allowing it to ferment.

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Old 06-28-2009, 05:58 AM   #10
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i would say just pitch it. leave the yeast out of the fridge for a half hour or so, or however long you think it will take for it to get to around 50 degrees, and pitch it. when it gets into the right zone it will start doing what it was born to do. a lot of trappist breweries pitch at pretty low temperatures and allow the temp to rise. or it might not and then youve learned a valuable lesson! either way its better than throwing out 5 gallons of blood sweat and tears.

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