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Old 09-18-2012, 01:10 AM   #1
khorn
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Default First Brew - Brooklyn Brewery Everyday IPA kit

Hi all - first post here on the forums. I had some questions about my first brew that I started about a week ago. I'm using the 1 gallon IPA kit from Brooklyn Brewery. The first steps went fine - but I had some questions about the fermentation.

First, I've noticed that there's been no off-gassing activity in the airlock. I watched it for about 5 minutes and saw nothing. When I was running the blow off tube there was plenty of CO2 being released but it subsided after two days, when I replaced it with the air lock. I wanted to know if this was OK, or if something is wrong?

Second, there's a noticeable amount of sediment at the bottom of the fermenter. I strained most of the mash through a fine mesh strainer, but had to put a large colander under it because it wasn't big enough, so some sediment got through. I strained it a second time when I transferred the wort to the carboy. I attached a picture below and wanted to know if this was a significant amount of sediment and if it will effect the brew in any way.

Lastly, there's a lot of blackish gunk built up around the top of the carboy from the first few days of fermentation (again, picture attached). Is this normal?

Overall this was a great learning experience and I feel like I did everything correctly - I definitely need to find some more accommodating equipment, like a larger strainer and an electronic thermometer for faster, more accurate temp readings.

I appreciate any help and guidance!

sediment.jpg   gunk.jpg  
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Old 09-18-2012, 01:28 AM   #2
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Ahhh...memories, my first brew was this kit.

Everything is fine...the airlock is not a good indication of fermentation. You will always have hops, yeast and other particles settle on the bottom, its called trub. Finally, the "gunk" on the top is called krausen (well whats left of it). Its a sign that your fermentation is slowing down.

Good luck.

PS- Straining your wort is not necessary but will lead to less trub at the bottom.

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Old 09-18-2012, 01:34 AM   #3
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Thanks for the heads up!

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Old 09-18-2012, 04:25 AM   #4
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Yup everything looks normal. This was my first all grain brew and was delish. Good luck.

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Old 09-18-2012, 05:15 AM   #5
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I just drank a bottle of Everyday IPA literally a minute ago. I drank some while it was young and it was pretty good, but this one was in bottles for three weeks or so and was excellent. Crystal clear, and hoppy and malty. Even my wife said it was well worth the effort. I'm not boasting; that's just how it turned out. It was my first try at using grain instead of extract.

I noticed what you are noticing. The yeast was very active for a day, then it didn't seem to be doing much for the rest of the two weeks it was in the fermenter. It cleared rather suddenly right at the two week mark. It made lots of "krausen" in the first twelve to twenty-four hours of fermenting, which yours also did, which is why you have that stuff at the top. That stuff is good.

In your pictures, the beer is the right colour and you have the right amount of sediment and gunk at the top. All is going according to plan. Continue to be patient and wait three weeks after bottling and you will have good beer. I like this recipe. It's tasty and it's nice and boozy. I'm feeling pretty good after a bottle of it.

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Old 09-18-2012, 01:25 PM   #6
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Encouraged to see this feedback - this Sunday is my first brew day and will be done using this kit. Looking forward to it!

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Old 09-19-2012, 02:59 PM   #7
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Thanks a lot for all of the replies. It's comforting knowing I'm in good shape and on my way to enjoying a tasty homemade brew. I had another quick question about bottling. I know I'm supposed to keep the racking cane about an inch above the trub but should I still use some sort of filter, like a strainer over a funnel when bottling to avoid getting any sediment in my bottles?

Thanks again!
Kyle

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Old 09-19-2012, 06:15 PM   #8
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Get a muslin bag to cover it from your local brewshop. You can use a paint strainer bag too. I don't use any, I'm just very careful siphoning

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Old 09-24-2012, 06:47 PM   #9
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Should I trash the beer that is just barely above the trub or is there a practical way to salvage it and avoid siphoning sediment?

Also, I'm approaching my 14th day of fermentation and I'm curious about cold crashing to clarify the beer and get some of the remaining active yeast to settle out. Is it worth experimenting with? It's only a gallon carboy so space is not an issue - it should fit in my fridge no problem.

While it is my first brew and it is primarily a learning experience I would like to try as many beneficial techniques as I can to adapt to future brews.

Thanks,
Kyle

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Old 09-24-2012, 07:08 PM   #10
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Quote:
Originally Posted by khorn
Should I trash the beer that is just barely above the trub or is there a practical way to salvage it and avoid siphoning sediment?
Your best bet is to give your racking cane atleast an inch to a inch and a half of space in between the beer and trub. Never disturb the trub otherwise it will get to your bottles, leaving you with a dirty, yeasty tasting beer. Leave the bottom inch or inch and a half in the fermenter and dump it out with the rest of the trub.
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