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Old 04-11-2011, 08:09 PM   #1
Join Date: Mar 2011
Location: knoxville, TN
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Here's the Recipe:
warmed 3 gallons water in granite pot.
Added 5 0z priming sugar @ about 150 degrees
dissolved while stirring
Added 3lb spraymalt extract as pot came to boil (212 degrees)
stirring constantly for about 15 minutes,
(here's where I think going off the books f--ed my brew up) Then added 4 oz. of Mtn. blossom organic honey straight into boil, stirring constantly.
After pot was at a steady boil I pitched in about 3 oz of ken golding pellet hops, reduced boil to 200 degrees and stirred occasionally over the next 45 minutes.

Added sodium metabisulfite (1 teaspoon) about 4 hours prior to adding yeast, and Cooled very slowly (didn't know to stir to cool, and didn't have a cooling aparaturs), which took about 6-8 hours. When brew was at 75 degrees I added 1 vial of White labs Ale yeast, and immediately sealed with blow-off tube submerged in 2 oz of sterile water.

lots of carbon dioxide blowoff, obvious fermentation. Waited 3 weeks and transferred to a secondary. When I tasted it, it tasted like absolute a--. It's bitter, it's very dry, and it has a funky, trashy smell to it. What might have happened??

p.s. I sterilized all of my equipment very thoroughly.

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Old 04-11-2011, 08:19 PM   #2
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You didn't boil the hops? Just sort of simmered them for 45 minutes?

That would definitely make the beer not have the correct bittering. I'm not sure what else is going on, but the sulfites might have really stressed your yeast. Not boiling the hops combined with adding sulfites to the primary and a long chilling might have combined to give you several problems here.

Make sure you boil the hops! No need to boil extract, as it's been boiled already, but you definitely want a nice rolling boil with the hops. don't add sulfite to your wort- ever! You want to make a nice "friendly" environment for the yeast to reproduce and ferment. Stressed yeast cause off-flavors! And chilling the wort quicky in a water bath with ice will help prevent contamination so you can pitch the yeast quicker. Not only should you NEVER use sulfite in the beer, using a teaspoon is more than a ton (I use 1/4 teaspoon for 6 gallons of wine must!)and sodium metabisulfite also adds sodium.

This batch may improve- so give it some time and see if it gets better.

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Old 04-11-2011, 08:24 PM   #3
Join Date: Mar 2011
Location: knoxville, TN
Posts: 5

the boiling temp hovered around 200 and 212, but I recall a quite steady boil after the hops were added. Yeah I think the sodium metabisulfite was a big screw up, previously mentioned on another strand, but I thought I may have given it enough time to gas off and neutralize.
Thanks, I'm one step closer to knowing what happened

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Old 04-11-2011, 08:32 PM   #4
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I'm going to ask... Why did you put the priming sugar into the pot at 150F and then make the rest of the batch?? You now have no sugar to prime with. Are you going to keg this, or were you planning to?

For hop additions and such, you need to use the visual boil guide, not rely entirely on temperature. Depending on your elevation, a boil will start at 212F (at sea level +/-)... I'm close enough to sea level to use that as my guide. Higher elevations have water boil at lower temperatures. Still, for hops, I'd probably stick with 212F as my target temp (it's still a boil, just a harder boil at higher elevations)...

BTW, just 4oz of honey won't even make a dent in a 5 gallon batch. It won't be noticed in a 3 gallon batch either.

Is the recipe you used something you found, or just made up on your own?? I used kits for my first three batches, altering all three of them either a little, or a lot. I then went and started formulating my own recipes. But, I used software to help figure things out once I stopped using kits. Has made for smoother brew days, and solid batches to date (11 under my belt, first 3 were extract, #4 was a partial mash, all grain since then)... If you want to start making up your own recipes, then I would highly recommend getting/using software to help you out. That way you can see the impact of tweaking the recipe more clearly. At least, that's what I've found...
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