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Old 04-20-2010, 05:15 AM   #1
Nugent's Avatar
Sep 2008
Vancouver, BC, Canada
Posts: 692
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No this isn't a 'is my beer ruined' post.

I made a 1.058 English IPA yesterday. Cooled to 66F with IC, pitched with a Pacman 1500 ml starter and oxygenated with 15 secs. of O-two with a diffusion stone. The ambient temperature in my 'beer' room is about 67-69F at this time of year, so I figured that leaving my carboy on its own would be fine, as my stick-on thermos rarely register much higher than ambient normally. Anyway, checked tonight and the stick-on was registering 75F. Had an Oh S**t moment, so I fired the carboy into a water bath with cooler water in it (about 68F). Am a bit choked as I've really been focusing on my fermentation as a function of improving my beer lately, and am halfway through building Yooper's Ice Cube cooler w/pink styro insulation top ghetto fermentation chamber. Didn't get it finished in time to use it for this brew, but didn't predict that the temp would have shot up that much.

My question is whether the yeast will clean up the potentially-weird flavours that fermenting that high might have caused in the 24 hrs. since I pitched. I have moved away from putting my beers in secondary and just keg from primary.

Thoughts, oh wise HBT sages?

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Old 04-20-2010, 05:51 AM   #2
Jul 2008
Portland, OR
Posts: 550
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Wyeast lists Pacman as having a max temp of 72F, so you're right to be concerned about off flavors.

Did the fermentation slow down significantly after you put it in a water bath? With a significant drop in temp, I'd be mildly concerned with halting the fermentation, though that is something I've only read about and not experienced myself.

I'd make sure that fermentation reaches your expected FG. After it does, let it sit for a few more days, then sample it. Does it taste off?
My experience is that the yeast tend to clean up after themselves, and leaving it sitting on the cake (maybe at the high end of the temp range) can help clean up off flavors.

If you still have off flavors after, say, a month on the cake, you might want to pitch an active starter to the beer to let them help the clean up process.

Good luck

Moving to a water bath helps quite a bit with temp control.

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