Originally Posted by TwoSheaStl
Carbonation has never been an issue, however, I cracked a few open this weekend (from my first batch) which was brewed about 3 months ago (amber Ale) and they tasted the best they ever have. So, unfortunately—looks like I'm going to have to wait 3 months to drink my beer rather than 1
3-4 weeks in the fermenter, 3 weeks in the bottle at 70F to carbonate - 6-8 weeks total should get you a decent beer. Some better longer (like porters, stouts, )
Temp control, too, during the first several days at least - if you aren't doing that now -
Smack Packs don't HAVE to be smacked - that's just a little 'helper' to prove the yeast are viable. Starters rarely yield krausen, just more white layers of yeast at the bottom of the flask.
congrats on it tasting better now!