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Old 07-11-2013, 02:22 AM   #1
chadkarol
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Default Ruined Batch?

Last Saturday I brewed my first batch using new equipment. 15 gallon keggle and a 15 gallon pot along with a march pump. This is after I've had much success using coolers as mash tun and hlt. I made a couple mistakes. One of my thermometers were not calibrated right and I ended up mashing too high of a temp. I may have also not sterilized as well as I should have. Put it in the fermenter and fermenting has seemed to go well. Down to 1.012. But. Tasted it today, 4 days into fermentation, and its awful. Very sour and just disgusting. I'll give it more time of course, but anyone else run into the same thing?
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Old 07-11-2013, 01:40 PM   #2
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And my guess is I'm probably trying it way too soon, but I've always tried a few days after brewing, and I never had these strange and gross tastes. I had a tiny sip, and had to wash the bad taste out of my mouth. Just curious if others have had the same experience and the beer ended up ok? This would end up being my second bad batch in a few years.
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Old 07-12-2013, 10:59 PM   #3
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It sounds like sanitization is the issue. Give it some time, but if it doesn't improve in the next week, you likely picked up something undesirable.
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Old 07-12-2013, 11:39 PM   #4
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Quote:
Originally Posted by daksin
It sounds like sanitization is the issue. Give it some time, but if it doesn't improve in the next week, you likely picked up something undesirable.
Thanks. My thought too. Just tried it again now and still bad. I'll try it again next weekend and if still bad will just dump it. Doh.
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Old 07-12-2013, 11:51 PM   #5
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I wouldn't take much from tasting half fermented wort. I have had some that tasted pretty bad even at bottling and they came out good. I even had one that I didn't like after 2 weeks bottled then after 3 weeks it was very good.

As to the sanitation, was it before the boil or after? Anything before the boil is of no concern. The boiling will kill any nasties. Afterward it is a problem.
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Old 07-13-2013, 12:05 AM   #6
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Also, you mentioned new equipment..did you thoroughly clean it? Many new SS pieces come to the consumer with manufacturing chemicals/oils on them. You have to thoroughly clean every new piece of equipment you got.

But honestly, I think your OP was prophetic.
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I may have also not sterilized as well as I should have.
That + a sour smell is a good indicator of what likely went wrong.

Also, generally speaking we sanitize as homebrewers rather then sterilize. It's a subtle, but important difference ;-)
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Old 07-13-2013, 01:23 PM   #7
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Well, I used my pump to transfer the wort from the mash kettle to the boil kettle. Then after the boil I used the pump again to transfer to the fermenter. Without sanitizing first. My guess is this picked up something bad.
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Old 07-13-2013, 03:32 PM   #8
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Quote:
Originally Posted by chadkarol View Post
Well, I used my pump to transfer the wort from the mash kettle to the boil kettle. Then after the boil I used the pump again to transfer to the fermenter. Without sanitizing first. My guess is this picked up something bad.
Seems plausible.

You have to start recirculating the boil through your pump for the last 10 minutes or so. You'll have to use backpressure (I assume you have a valve on the outlet) on the pump to deal with the steam bubbles which can cause cavitation, and stick around for that time because it can still cavitate, but then you've sanitized the inner workings of your pump and tubing.

Also, make sure you get the amount of tubing that will go into the fermenter fully submerged in the boiling wort. The ends of the tubing tend to cool first and be exposed at ideal temps and open air to grow wild yeasts and bacteria after the mash.
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