Last night I cracked open my third homebrew, since finding this site. My first post on HBT was about an Oatmeal Stout. I did everything wrong! Pulled out of the primary too soon, pitched the yeast too hot, etc. I found HBT a day after pitching the yeast. To be honest, this beer still sucks, 2 months after bottling. As stated on HBT, I will put it to the side, and check it now and again. If it still sucks in 6 months, I willd dump it!
I learned a lot about the process from this first batch. Several items don't come with brewing kits. I built a wort chliller out of copper refrigerator tubing ($30), I got a long thermometer, I started using paint filters to get the hops/trub out of my boiling bucket, etc.
Second beer was a Kolsch. I left it in the primary for 3 weeks, and a secondary for 2 weeks (cold floor in garage). 3 weeks in a bottle.
This beer is awsome! It was even better at 4 weeks in the bottle. I compared it to a Kolsch on Tap at a Tavern, and mine was as good or better (Thanks for the tips YooperBrew).
Third beer was a English Brown Ale. Again...I took my time. This one was in the Primary for 27 days - no secondary.
This beer, after 3 weeks in the bottle, is a beauty. Taste, color, carbonation.....I am a happy beer drinker.
Moral of the story is, if you first batch sucks, ask questions, and try again. I have learned a ton of ways to make my beer better, make the process easier (Revvy's bottling tips), and got a lot of laughs along the way.
Don't be afraid to ask questions, but try the SEARCH first! People here are quick to respond to questions.
Thanks HBT! You guys ROCK!