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Cloudy Ale Low Alcohol Content!

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grimian

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Please help me. I have just started my first homebrew kit. I followed the instructions, I thought to the letter, going through primary fermentation and now the beer has been in a pressure barrell for three weeks. The beer is cloudy although it has cleared to a certain degree, but when I used a hydrometer to test it, I get a reading of 1.012 which I think is pretty poor!!
Taste wise, it is strong in flavour but tastes more like a fruity soft drink!
Is there any way of kick-starting the process again, have I given it enough time or should I chuck it and put it down to experience! :confused:
 
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grimian

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Is anyone willing to offer me some guidance?
 

Patrick

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grimian said:
Is anyone willing to offer me some guidance?
My stuff is typically pretty cloudy for the first 2 to 3 weeks. As for the low alcohol content, depending on how long you've let it go for secondary fermentation, I've added more sugar (I use only white sugar) and given it a stir. A further route would be to pitch more yeast, I suppose. As long as it doesn't smell sulfury, that should work.

I joined this forum this afternoon, as I'm about to embark on the grand adventure of making wine from my own homegrown grapes, and then other fruits. And then...eek...truly homemade beer....I think :rolleyes:
 
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grimian

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Thanks Patrick
I have added more sugar tonight and given it a good stir. I will let you know how I get on..... Good luck with the homegrown grapes!!!
 

Rahbek

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Hi Grimian!

Do you know the original gravity of the wort, that will give you an indication of alcohol content. What type of ale are you brewing? A Final Gravity of 1.012 isn't too bad, especially if you started with a fairly high gravity.
 
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grimian

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Thanks for your post Rahbek!
I didn't take the original gravity. (put that down to inexperience LOL!!), but the ale I am brewing is a Highland Heavy Ale (quite dark in colour and strong in taste) It should be about 4.7% which is not overly strong, but not weak either! I must admit that it looks like the beer is now clearing and I drank a couple of pints over the weekend which did have an effect so I guess it's not all bad!!!!
I think next time, I will have to remember to take the gravity of the wort before I get started .... I would have thought that the manufacturer would have included this information with the kit ........... oh well, we learn by our mistakes!!!
 

dksj

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Girmian,
I'm not too up to speed on bottling, however, prior to kegging I'll move the carboys into the fridge to let the sediment settle out and then rack into the kegs. If you have the space, aka an extra fridge, this will help you out significantly. A second s.g. of 1.012 isn't bad, I'm brewing batches that are around that, 1.010 and 1.010-12, which is yielding beer in the 6-7% range. Don't forget to take your initial s.g., otherwise it will be difficult to calculate your % etoh.

Cheers,
dj
 
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grimian

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Thanks DKSJ !
I will take the original s.g. the next time I make some. I tried the beer this evening and it is getting clearer all the time ........... in fact it's not too bad for a first attempt :D I guess I may have been a little hasty in my judgement!
Interesting about the second fridge .......... I will have to convince my wife so a bit of work needed there I think :rolleyes:
Cheers
 
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