First infection

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janzik

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I went to to the basement to check on my stash and I seen my extract Wheat carboy had a nice white spiderweb film on top and it stinks...



Anything I can do other than dump and learn?
 

Beerthoven

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I'm sorry to see that. If it were mine, I would dump it, clean up well, and move on to the next batch.

A lot of people are going to tell you to ride it out and try to save it; that it might turn into something nice eventually. I'm just not that hard-up for homebrew or that interested in ambient fermentation experiments to keep it around long enough to see.

Infected beer is not the same thing as sour beer, IMO.

If you have the patience for it then go ahead and give it a go. It may, in fact, turn into something nice someday, but its going to stay around for long time and could just as easily end up nasty and gross.
 

avidhomebrewer

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Yeah, I agree with Ooompa Loompa. If you have enough other beer and can wait for this one, let it go. You may end up with something that is very tasty.
 

EinGutesBier

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Oompa Loompa: I read your thread...did you just bottle when you felt it was right or did you actually wait out until the infection dissolved? Either way, how long did you wait in terms of weeks, etc?
 

WBC

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How long did that wort sit before the yeast was going good. I'm curious. in 36 years I have never had an infection, I must be really lucky.
 

EinGutesBier

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How long did that wort sit before the yeast was going good. I'm curious. in 36 years I have never had an infection, I must be really lucky.
I'm not sure if it'd help answer your question, but in my experience, my infection began after fermentation. It looked like the pellicle formed after my FG hit 1.010 (OG 1.056)...if you ask me, that's pretty weird. I was using a starter with my Wyeast Saison and am starting to think that maybe that bug was part of the yeast they cultivated, if it came from a brewery in Belgium. Kind of tin foil-hattish of me, but that one theory. Otherwise, I'm not sure how an infection could've taken hold like that.
 

WBC

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Ok, I never see that on my beer but I do not brew saisons either. German yeast is what I use most of the time.
 

EinGutesBier

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Ok, I never see that on my beer but I do not brew saisons either. German yeast is what I use most of the time.
Well, I don't know if a Saison should necessarily have a pellicle, but mine got one and my sanitary practices weren't any worse. I just thought it was strange. What I'm saying is that I guess infection doesn't always have to do with the yeast lagging.
 

AnonyBrew

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Janzik, what was the lag time for that fermentation & how long had it been in there prior to you noticing? Is it done ferementing?

If it were mine, I'd go with the advise on the other thread that was provided. Rack it from underneath the top layer, without getting any of the top layer.

Question is when to do it. Probably after fermentation is complete.
 

cubbies

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I wouldnt just give up on it. But to each their own. Your options are:

A) Let it ride for a while, see what happens
B) brew up another complimentary beer and mix them
C) add some sort of flavor (like fruit) to cover up the harsh infecteous taste

There may be other options, but that is all I can think of. Personally I would try to blend.
 
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janzik

janzik

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Janzik, what was the lag time for that fermentation & how long had it been in there prior to you noticing? Is it done ferementing?

If it were mine, I'd go with the advise on the other thread that was provided. Rack it from underneath the top layer, without getting any of the top layer.

Question is when to do it. Probably after fermentation is complete.
Fermentation was complete before it was even in that carboy. I moved it to this secondary probably 2-3 weeks ago.

I'm going to see if I can rack under the skim and see what it's looking like...
 

landhoney

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...if you ask me, that's pretty weird. I was using a starter with my Wyeast Saison and am starting to think that maybe that bug was part of the yeast they cultivated, if it came from a brewery in Belgium. Kind of tin foil-hattish of me, but that one theory. Otherwise, I'm not sure how an infection could've taken hold like that.
That strain is pure saccharomyces, nothing else but the one saison yeast. Unless they sent out an infected yeast packet, which is very unlikely. I'm not sure what you think is strange? The beer could have been infected during primary fermentation or before it even started, but how would you have known? The pellicle is just the yeast/bug/bacteria/whatever using the oxygen on the surface of the beer, and could not form during primary fermentation. They are definitely throughout the beer, not isolated on the surface. They just like the oxygen and so they grow/thrive on the surface in a visible way.
 

EinGutesBier

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That strain is pure saccharomyces, nothing else but the one saison yeast. Unless they sent out an infected yeast packet, which is very unlikely. I'm not sure what you think is strange? The beer could have been infected during primary fermentation or before it even started, but how would you have known? The pellicle is just the yeast/bug/bacteria/whatever using the oxygen on the surface of the beer, and could not form during primary fermentation. They are definitely throughout the beer, not isolated on the surface. They just like the oxygen and so they grow/thrive on the surface in a visible way.
Hm. Interesting stuff - which is why I always enjoy the dialogue on infected beer. You're more than likely right about the infected saison yeast and it must've taken root whenever it happened to do so.

Out of curiousity, landhoney, would this bacterial infection make my beer unusually cloudy? I can't help but notice that when I pull of a sample, it's cloudier than I would expect since the yeast have already dropped out (it's been about 3.75 weeks). Stranger still, the bottom of the sample has strong smelling sediment...would that be bacteria as well?

On a plus note, for whatever odd reason, the sample has gotten a lot more well-rounded and sweeter notes are starting to come back through, despite the acidity produced. A good sign, I think. In any case, if this turns out all right, I guess I'll harvest the yeast and use it if I ever want to make an infected saison again! : P
 

Ooompa Loompa

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Oompa Loompa: I read your thread...did you just bottle when you felt it was right or did you actually wait out until the infection dissolved? Either way, how long did you wait in terms of weeks, etc?
I hadn't paid attention to it for about a week, and then I checked it and saw that it was infected, and I wanted to try and get it off the infection, so I bottled the next day. The infection did of course carry over to the bottles, but I drink it anyway, as it tastes/smells just fine. I just keep a close eye out for bottle bombs. But it's been over a month now I think, and the bottles aren't even overcarbed or "gushing" so I'm honestly less concerned about it now.
 

joejaz

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Is there any danger in drinking infected beer? I wouldn't eat bread that was green molded or sour milk. Although I eat my wife's cooking.
 

EvilTOJ

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Nope, there are no known pathogens that can live in beer. You might get nuclear beer farts though, but that's about it. You can eat moldy bread and sour milk too. In fact if you eat cheese you ARE eating sour milk.
 

joejaz

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Nope, there are no known pathogens that can live in beer. You might get nuclear beer farts though, but that's about it. You can eat moldy bread and sour milk too. In fact if you eat cheese you ARE eating sour milk.

You learn something new everyday . . . nuclear beer farts . . .sounds interesting
 
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