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Old 05-10-2009, 05:55 PM   #1
digitalkid2112
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Default Wort Temp. too high when I pitched yeast

I just finished up brewing a batch of Scotch Ale (Wee Heavy variety). Hit my OG right on target at 1.063 and the brewing process went very well considering its only my 2nd time. But of course I had to screw up the last step and not stir the wort while cooling with the immersion chiller. The temp read 74deg and I thought I was good so I put the yeast (Wyeast American Ale 1056) in the primary bucket and poured the wort right into the bucket (palmer method). Took a gravity reading and a temp reading and flipped out when the temp read 84deg. I was able to get it cooled to 80deg within 15 minutes of pitching and it is currently sitting in a 64deg basement. Is this going to turn out ok or am I going to get a lot of off-flavoring?

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Old 05-10-2009, 06:08 PM   #2
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You should be fine, just be sure to learn from your mistake. The temps on the yeast packages are "suggested" and "optimal" temps., while 84 deg. F is way too high I don't think that you destroyed all of your yeast. You may experience a little off flavor, however a little longer in a cool secondary may help clean it up. Good Luck and learn! Brewing beer can sometimes be a lot more forgiving than one might think... Just don't push the envelope!!!

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Old 05-11-2009, 02:42 AM   #3
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Update. After 24 hrs. it is fermenting vigorously. So looks like the warm temp. really kick started the fermentation without killing the yeast. So thats a good sign. Now fingers crossed for no off-flavors.

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Old 05-11-2009, 02:50 AM   #4
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What is the temp at this time? If the temp is high now I would expect some off flavors but you are probably fine.

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Old 05-11-2009, 02:54 AM   #5
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84 degrees isn't bad. I just pitched two beers at around 90 (a hefe and haus ale) because my thermometer was off also. I put them in my closet and put a fan on them.

Both fermenting vigorously after about 6 hours. I doubt that there will be too many off flavors if any at all. Especially since you cooled it off so quickly.

I'm bad about pitching hot just because a) I'm impatient and b) the tap water is very warm and c) I don't have a ton of ice.

I'm going to be freezing some bottles that I can drop in the wort to finish that last little bit, or something.

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Old 05-11-2009, 02:55 AM   #6
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I had to put my Wee Heavy into a swamp bucket to keep the temps down, once the fermentation took off things started to heat up quick! So even if you are in a cool spot, keep an eye on the temperature.

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Old 05-11-2009, 03:02 AM   #7
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84 isn't that high, I usually pitch in the upper 70s and then cool it down from there. Pitching at that temp is fine for pitching, but fermentation in the 80s tends to lead to lots of esthers. My first few beers (before I got a fermentation chamber) ended up with a strong banana like flavor due to high fermentation temps.

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Old 05-11-2009, 03:50 AM   #8
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i pitched a T58 @ 90+F... it was harsh at first but mellowed out with time.

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Old 05-11-2009, 03:50 PM   #9
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84F won't kill the yeast and since you brought the temperature down, all that happened was some rapid growth. High temperatures won't hurt the beer until fermentation starts. That's why you can pitch a lager at 75F and cool it to 50F without any problem.

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Old 05-11-2009, 03:58 PM   #10
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I did this with my first batch...still waiting the results. Unfortunately, the only location in my house that I can store the fermenter is a constant 73-74F so I know I'll get some esther off flavors. But it's a honey weizen, so it shouldn't make much of a difference.

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