Originally Posted by Grinder12000
Revvy just mentioned that to me! Which is why he switches off from time to time.
I started doing it last year, and then a few months later Chris Colby of BYO mentioned it as an aside comment on a basic brewing podcast.
It was kinda cool that something that "felt right" intrinsically got backed up by one of the big dogs.
To me it made sense, maybe because I work at the medical school and we talk about anitbiotic resistant infections...I thought if infections can mutate in our bodies to get around antibiotics, couldn't our brewing germs get to used to our environement and our sanitizing regimen as well.
For example I might mix up a batch of bulk farm grade "iodophor" (dairy sanitizer) on brew day, so all post boil stuff gets iodophor, but on bottling day I will use starsan. Then next batch I will switch up and use starsan on boil day and iodophor on bottling day....and then I might use all iodophor on both boil and bottle on the next batch. And starsan on the next. That way I am never following a set pattern, and hopefully not letting any germs adapt to one type of sanitiser. Or I might be dunking stuff in iodophor, but spritz my turkey baster and airlock bung with starsan in RO.
I believe it was mentioned in the "Fermenting in Kegs" podcast. Like I said it was a throwaway comment. Clicky linky to listen.
And I disagree with Kahuni, it is more likely that an experienced brewer would have a greater risk for infection, especially over a new brewer on their first few batches with brand new equipment.
And it's been backed up by a couple people, The Brewer at New Glarus, and The Aussies on Craft brewer radio.
On Craftbrewer radio they said it usually happens around the 10th, the 30th and the 50th batch...even the pro's deal with it (the Brewer at New Glarus said in an interview on Basicbrewing radio that a commercial brewery operation gets a 3 year grace period before their first infection)
Dan Carey of NG mentioned it somewhere in this podcast IIRC.
It's called a house germ...and it develops over time...
I got an infection around the 20th batch, I replaced my autosiphon, bottling wand and all my hoses and changed my sanitizer, in case the house germ was getting used to it... And it turned up in a batched being judged for a contest no-less. I talk about it here.
I entered my Porter in the ren fest contest last year....And it turned out that I had an infection in the beer...a late onset gusher infection that I later traced to my auto siphon.....
It sucked because I drank plenty of those beers (most of the cases) with no problem...but out of the last 6 were where the contest entries were, the batch was several months old...and I was home on the weekend of the judging, and when I opened one...right around the time I knew they were judging, I pretty much crapped in my pants...especially since I opened a second one and it gushed too....
I had a batch that was for several months, and only the last 6 pack were affected. traced it to the autosiphon (actually it was my fault I originally broke the tube at the bend, and just slapped the hose on it with a clamp and never dissasembled it.
It was a porter that had bottle gushers no less...during judging at a contest...I was lucky though I had two patient judges...they let the first one gush, then asked for the second...it gushed as well...but they let the gushing stop and actually judged the remaining beers...
AND THEY LOVED THE FREAKIN TASTE!!!!!
They said on my judging sheets that had it not gushed I would have prolly placed in the top 3...and they were stymied, because they wrote in my evals, that there were absolutely no off flavors..
The hosts of the podcast in Australia have 60 years of brewing experience...It's funny, but John Palmer learns from them
they've been doing hpmebrewing radio for 6-7 years first on commercial than as a podcast...this is a very good discussion on infection and infection control.
They talk about the "timeframe" of infections, and how it is less likely for a first batch to be infected...it tends to occur around the 10th batch and the 50th...When the equipment gets more used up, and "house germs" start to build up. They used the term "house mouth" in the discussion, how we may not even notice, because we're sort of used to the taste of our beers, it's usually NOT a regular drinker of our beers that notices it.
“What is sour mashing?” I hear you ask. So said our brewmaster as he guides you thru this most interesting of ways of making a beer. In a nice compact show, we also cover feedback, Kit and Kilo infections, our beer superhero turns “gay”, and a faviourite beer song is requested yet again. Not enough, well also hear about WHO stuffed up his brew day.
But after I found the source of mine (in my autosiphon) I replaced it, got new hoses, thoroughly cleaned everything, and began alternating between Starsan and iodophor to keep ahead of any germs...I haven't had any more issues in a year.
It's nothing a new brewer should worry, and it's really no big deal if you catch it and zap it....BUT we have to be aware that our gear gets more use, has the potential to get scratched more than brand new, house things can develop, AND WE WHO HAVE BEEN BREWING FOR AWHILE can get a wee bit cocky or sloppy in our procedures.
Plus it doesn't hurt to replace some gear, especially hoses and maybe our bottling bucket spigot on occasionr...or at least break it down and clean it...Same with our autosiphon, and bottling wand...I now take them all apart and make sure there is no little bits of bio matter in any crevace. And it's a good idea to hand inspect any buckets for scratches or gouges.But It is NOT something we have to freak out about, like new brewers do...It's just something to be AWARE of and keep an eye out.
But it's kinda like when you have a brand new car, you park at the far end of the lot away from everyone else, you are paranoid about getting every little scratch on it...Then you are backing out of the garage and take off a mirror, or get a ding on the bumper, then you no-longer stress out about it, because you've popped the cars cherry...If you do pick up a bug, you just treat it and move on.