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1st batch probs - but I am totally relaxed and its drinkable

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JohnA111

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So I brewed a homebrew kit robust proter for my first forray into the world of home brewing. From my memory:

6.6# can Dark LME (unhopped)
2# Dark DME
8oz Malto Dextrin
6oz Choc grain malt (steeped in a bag from burner on to 150F)
10oz Roasted Barley (steeped in a bag from burner on to 150F... my own addition)
1oz hop pellets
1pack Muntons Ale Yeast

The boil (1.5gal) after steeping was for 35 minutes. Aeration was vigorous shaking of 5gals in the 6gal carboy. Pitched at 70 degrees F into the carboy. No secondary used. OG = 1.054 on 1-1.

Kruesean (lame - 1/2 to 1 inch) formed 40 hours after pitching
Air lock bubbled for 1 day beyond that.

1-4 SG=1.027 (fermentation appeared to stop on 1-3, gave bit of a swish to the carboy)
1-7 SG=1.027 (repitched another Muntons ale yeast pack after rehydrating it)
1-10 SG=1.026 (No new Kruesean formed)
1-11 SG=1.026 (nuttin changed)
1-12 SG=1.026 (Bottled)

All SG's are adjusted for temp. Sanitation was held to a high standard. Rehydration of second yeast pack was done by boiling water for 15 minutes, cooling to 72F, adding yeast, pitching to carboy (which was 70F)

At bottling tasted okay, wee bit of paper taste (oxidation?), no off flavors. Lots of trub in the bottom of the carboy. Good dark color that seemed to be clearing each day up to bottling. I like the beer. Good first batch.

THE BIG QUESTION:

50% attenuation? 3.5% ABV? Any ideas why my fermentation died with these ingredients / methods?

Don't get me wrong, I won't have any problem drinking it after it ages for 3-4 weeks, but I'm sorta stumped at the "glitch". I haven't made / seen any good deductions / explanations reading posts on this AWESOME forum (I don't think it would have been half as good without all the great info on here). Any help would be appreciated.
 

Joker

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Did the primary drop to low temps at any time during fermentation? That is about the only thing I can think of that would stop fermentation short like that.
 

Nurmey

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I have never had a batch using Munton's that fermented out all the way. I've switched to using Nottingham for my dry yeast after getting attenuation in the 50's from Munton's on a couple dozen kits.
 

KevinWP

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I think (I'm new too) that the Malto Dextrin would have added a bunch of unfermentables.

I'm not sure what 'Steeped in a bag from burner on to 150' means. Did you bring it to a boil and steep till it cooled from boil to 150 or did you steep from cold all the way up to 150?

My Best guess with my limited experience is that the OG was off, and you were actually a bit higher and that the malto dextrin added a bunch of sweet unfermentables.

It's Beer.

(I post this in the glow of bottling my first batch tonight... 3rd batch is cooling in the sink as I post)
 

Jesse17

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KevinWP said:
My Best guess with my limited experience is that the OG was off, and you were actually a bit higher and that the malto dextrin added a bunch of sweet unfermentables.
That's actually I good guess.

You said that, "Aeration was vigorous shaking of 5gals in the 6gal carboy." That should be enough to mix your top up water with the wort, but did you take your O.G. before or after the aeration. If you took it before, and you didn't stir it REALLY good, you could have got a faults reading.

But, I don't know enough yet, to calculate what your O.G. should have been from looking at your recipe.
 
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JohnA111

JohnA111

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GaryA-Fermentation was never below 69F nor above 74F

Nurmey-Munton's will not be used for the next batch of a IPA.

KevinWP-Steeping took place in a bag from cold (actually warm, say 100F or so) to 150F and held at 150F range for 10 more minutes, then removed - wort then brought up to a boil. Man I had the heebeegeebee's about that malto dextrin specifically for this reason. Shoulda just lactosed it a bit. I like a "full bodied" beer and went with the side of caution (read: followed the kit).

Jesse17- OG was taken just before yeast was pitched after the aeration. Things were settled down, but I can assure you they were very thoroughly mixed (sweat on forehead from holding 45lbs of beer in front of me and shaking it to the point of foaming). I treated it like crappy paint I was about to spray.

Kit's OG was predicted to be 1.043-1.045
Kit's FG was predicted as 1.012-1.014
=3.25% ABV (pretty weak for a Porter I'd say)
Only addition was roasted Barley

Hmmmmm.... I juts realized maybe I'm not THAT far off from the kit's prediction..... huh!?!

OG 1.054 to FG 1.026 = 2.94% ABV.

Maybe I should have substituted half of the Malto-dextrin for Honey? or just opted out of it? I dunno, but rationalizing this with help has made me feel better. Thanks to all!
 

discgolfin

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1.054 to 1.026 is 3.7 % ABV..or 2.8% ABW \

...this is about 55% attenuation..

This ale yeast should be around 75% attenuation.

2 things either the yeast did not finish and u risk bottle problems..or the OG or FG were wrong..did u temp correct? bubbles? someting when u took the SG?

just an idea

Jay
 

FlyGuy

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I plugged your numbers into Beersmith, and I came up with an expected gravity of 1.066. I suspect your measured your OG incorrectly, and perhaps underestimated it. Given your recipe, it would be pretty hard to undershoot that much.

Assuming your OG was closer to 1.066, then a FG of 1.026 isn't that bad for Munton's yeast (60%), particularly if you didn't rehydrate it first. Considering that you probably have a lot of unfermentables in your beer, I think it is understandable.

See how it tastes -- next time you can try a drier yeast like Nottingham or Safale S-05 or Wyeast 1028 or White Labs WLP001. If you like that better, problem solved!

:mug:
 
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