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Old 10-30-2010, 03:33 AM   #1
MaximAvs
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Default Fermenter smells like........cheese?!

So my Holiday Red has been brewing vigorously for the last 6 days in the primary. I was planning on racking to secondary tomorrow so I went down to check on it tonight. What I have been doing is smelling the gases coming out if the air lock and had been smelling like "hoppy" beer, but today it smelled like someone put block of sharp cheddar in my fermenter. Everything looks normal other than the smell.
Any ideas?
It is at about 66*
Recipe:
2 lbs Caramunich II
1/2 lbs Vienna
3.3 lbs Munich LME
3 lbs light LME
1 oz Tradition
Wyeast 1007


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Old 10-30-2010, 04:05 AM   #2
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Just out of curiosity, any reason you're racking to secondary after just 6 days?


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Old 10-30-2010, 04:07 AM   #3
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Let it go for a while yet in primary. It isn't ready to rack to secondary.
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Old 10-30-2010, 04:09 AM   #4
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of course it's going to smell like that a week into it. let it age another 2 weeks in the primary (never rack after 1 week! ). age it another month after racking it (or bottling it), regardless of the ridiculous times it gives in the kit's instructions
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Old 10-30-2010, 04:10 AM   #5
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Seriously, beer goes through some pretty funny phases in the fermentation, and I wouldn't let that one phase me, although I will ask whether you used water in the airlock, or starsan or vodka or something else. If it was anything other than starsan or vodka, I would probably consider replacing it with one of those two.

Also, I will second the comment (or question?) about racking to secondary this early. More time really does make better beer.
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Old 10-30-2010, 04:45 AM   #6
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I was going to rack to the secondary because everything I've read says '1-2-3'. So after a week in the primary, I figured it's time to move to the secondary for 2 weeks.

BTW: it is StarSan in the airlock. I have had to clean out the airlock a couple of times cause the the fermentation got a little carried away.
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Old 10-30-2010, 04:49 AM   #7
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I've also heard to get the beer off that yeast cake so you don't get off flavors. That's why I was going to rack at this time.
But if you guys are saying to wait, I'll wait.

Maybe this is why my first brew tasted awful.
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Old 10-30-2010, 05:26 AM   #8
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Don't secondary. Just wait 3 weeks and bottle. It'll be OK.
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Old 10-30-2010, 05:33 AM   #9
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Quote:
Originally Posted by MaximAvs View Post
Maybe this is why my first brew tasted awful.
Lol, maybe. I was corrected about the 1-2-3 method directly after my first batch as well. Luckily I left my first in the primary for an epic 10 days and it came out pretty good. I have now switched to leaving it in primary for 3-4 weeks and life is good.

Also, I can't believe nobody has said anything about airlock sniffing. I do it too, but I wouldn't think of the smell as being a major indicator of future quality.

In summary, RDWHAHB. That is my recommended method to cure the cheese smell.
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If the inside of your fermenter looks like there was a monkey pooh throwing contest...you're golden.
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Old 10-30-2010, 12:42 PM   #10
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Thanks guys for the info! I'll let 'er go for another week or so.

Should I start taking gravity readings or don't worry about for another week as well?


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