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Old 08-16-2008, 09:48 PM   #1
Jul 2008
Posts: 15

This is my second batch, and I'm 99% sure its infected

Bottled today, and it smelled quite funky. It smelled exactly like a rotten tomato. Tasted it and yep, rotten tomato. My recipe was as follows:

3.3 lb wheat LME
1.0 lb light DME
1.0 lb honey
1.0 oz german spaltz hop pellets (3.5%)
1.0 oz orange zest
Safbrew WB-06 yeast

I boiled the honey (spare me the "don't boil honey" speech for now) and the orange zest the last 5 minutes of the boil, and used a strainer to get the zest out before going into my primary.

Fermentation went normally, I kept the temperature down between 60-70, and left it for two weeks. The FG was spot on at 1.010. The yeast cake looked normal after bottling. The krausen looked a bit weak, only half an inch tall, but this might be normal since my fermentation wasn't very violent.

The infection took me by surprise because during my first batch, I made so many mistakes, but it came out fine.. my second batch went much better because I had learned a lot, and yet here I am sitting with infection. The rotten tomato smell is suspicious to me... when I brewed this batch, I had just received fresh tomatoes that had a few rotten spots on them. I know its probably a stretch, but could my beer be infected by that? If not, was it my orange zest somehow?

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Old 08-16-2008, 10:15 PM   #2
Oct 2007
South Florida
Posts: 1,364
Liked 2 Times on 2 Posts

Maybe something airborne? Keep it tucked away for a few weeks then taste one, if its still bad wait longer.
Primary: Nothing
Secondary: DFH Punkin Ale
Bottled/Conditioning: Cigar City Jai Alai IPA Clone, Apple Jack 1.0, Apple Jack 2.0
Drinking: Yakima Blonde (Imperialized), Banana Wheat, Russian Imperial Stout, and anything i can get my hands on
On Deck: Watermelon Wheat, Red Panda Ale, Gluten Free Brown Ale, Mojito IPA, Smoked Pepper Stout

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Old 08-16-2008, 10:59 PM   #3
Maniacally Malty
DeathBrewer's Avatar
Apr 2007
Oakland, CA
Posts: 21,790
Liked 269 Times on 134 Posts

Sounds like lactobacillus, maybe. give it a few weeks in bottles and try again. might not be what you think...the beer is still green.

EDIT: although lactobacillus can infect tomatoes, it has nothing to do with the "tomato" flavor. if it is indeed infected, thoroughly clean and sanitize all your equipment. if you ferment in a bucket, you may wish to buy a carboy or get a new one.
Easy Partial Mash Brewing - Stovetop All-Grain Brewing

"Death is always with us." - Brewpastor

We will remember...

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