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Home Brew Forums > Home Brewing Beer > Beginners Beer Brewing Forum > First Stout - No head
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Old 10-09-2012, 03:33 AM   #1
SenorElJefe
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Default First Stout - No head

I just brewed my first stout with the help of a "veteran" brewer. After bottling 5 weeks, I chilled and poured into glass... and it seemed flat. I was expecting a nice, thick head... but got almost none.

Any ideas of what went wrong? Might it get better over time?

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Old 10-09-2012, 03:39 AM   #2
inhousebrew
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Was it flat or did it not have head retention? Because those are two different things. If it's flat there obviously won't be any head and you probably didn't use enough priming sugar or the bottles are too cold to quickly carb. Or the ABV is really high which hinders carbonation. If you have poor head retention that is a different issue. It could be a recipe issue or I have read getting a weak hot break can have something to do with head retention. Not sure about that though.

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Old 10-09-2012, 03:42 AM   #3
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There's always the possibility that the priming sugar wasn't mixed thoroughly. If it's a higher gravity brew it may take longer to carb up than a normal gravity beer. I hate to put it forth as a possibility, but the priming sugar may never have been added in the first place. I've heard of it happening to others and it's very nearly happened to me a few times. If it's been stored at say cellar temp, it may be taking a little longer to carb. I don't know, 5 weeks I'd say there would be at least some carbonation, regardless of storage or gravity. Give it a good, vigorous pour and see if you can't get some CO2 out. Let us know what you find out and we'll know where to go from there. Cheers!

EDIT: inhousebrew beat me to the reply

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Old 10-09-2012, 03:54 AM   #4
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also, check your glass. if you didn't rinse your glasses enough and there's the barest hint of soap residue on them it can kill head retention.

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Old 10-09-2012, 05:25 PM   #5
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Quote:
Originally Posted by nukebrewer View Post
I hate to put it forth as a possibility, but the priming sugar may never have been added in the first place. I've heard of it happening to others and it's very nearly happened to me a few times.
Totally almost been there more than once. So fixated on making sure everything is clean, sanitized and where it should be that I start transferring without priming sugar.

The glass cleanliness is a good point too.
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