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No big yeast chunks swirling during fermentation

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dibs78

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I've been brewing for a year now and my last 6 or so batches have been sub par. They taste bland and the malt isn't coming through very much. I've been watching videos of other fermentation and noticed big yeast chunks swirling. While I do get Krausen and swirling tiny bubbles, the yeast chunks are very few and very small.

I'm wondering if this is a sign of what I'm doing wrong. I BIAB, my efficiency seems to be in the mid 60s- 70 and I usually am right around my OG target. I don't test for conversion though my beer usually tastes sweet after the boil. My pitch temp has been mid 60s to 70 and my ferm temps the same. These have been 040 to 060 beers. It just seems like my beers taste watered down by seltzer water. The only thing I've really changed is getting a larger aluminum pot to BIAB instead of doing small Mr. Beer keg batches.

Any ideas?
 

Homercidal

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Well, water does play a part in how a beer tastes. I've heard of many people getting less bland beers by playing with water chemistry.

A 60's ferment is going to be slower and less active than a 70s ferment. If you've changed your ferment temp when you started noticing the lack of activity, then that may be one cause.

Also, different strains of yeast act differently. Some yeast will look like chunks of yogurt flying around in there, but others might be so spread out it looks like dust or jus ta lightening of the beer.
 

ColoHox

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I have a few comments, but first, to address your question; different yeasts will ferment differently, and certainly not all of them will make that vigorous, chunky fermentation. It sounds like the rest of your process is mostly sound.

Consider raising your mash temp to provide more body and more malt flavors in your finished beer. Your yeast selection will, of course, influence the final flavors in your beer, but a slightly higher mash temp, maybe in the ~152-154F range, might give you what you are looking for. Along those same lines, you could add some malts that contribute to body like dextrin, crystal, or oats. I tend to prefer beers with more body, so I usually mash higher than a particular recipe recommends for the first brew. If I brew it again, I adjust the mash temp up or down to get there.

You should probably also be getting higher effeciency with BIAB. Since you have that bag in there, you can really pulverize your grain. If you don't have a mill at home, double crush them at the LHBS. You will have to account for this higher efficiency when you are designing your recipes. You certainly don't have to change your crush though, and this won't affect the thinness/thickness of your beer, just a comment.
 

ABVIBUSRM

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Can you post a recipe? Sometime some conditioning helps to liven up a thin beer..How long after packaging are you drinking these beers?..How many gallons of water do you use? oh and dont worry about the chunks of yeast swirling cause every fermentation behaves different and just because you do not see giant chunks of yeast does not mean it will be bad..some yeast is chunky some is dusty ..no sweat
 

ABVIBUSRM

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I have a few comments, but first, to address your question; different yeasts will ferment differently, and certainly not all of them will make that vigorous, chunky fermentation. It sounds like the rest of your process is mostly sound.

Consider raising your mash temp to provide more body and more malt flavors in your finished beer. Your yeast selection will, of course, influence the final flavors in your beer, but a slightly higher mash temp, maybe in the ~152-154F range, might give you what you are looking for. Along those same lines, you could add some malts that contribute to body like dextrin, crystal, or oats. I tend to prefer beers with more body, so I usually mash higher than a particular recipe recommends for the first brew. If I brew it again, I adjust the mash temp up or down to get there.

You should probably also be getting higher effeciency with BIAB. Since you have that bag in there, you can really pulverize your grain. If you don't have a mill at home, double crush them at the LHBS. You will have to account for this higher efficiency when you are designing your recipes. You certainly don't have to change your crush though, and this won't affect the thinness/thickness of your beer, just a comment.
+1 on adjusting mash temp
 
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dibs78

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Thanks! It's just strange how all the yeast falls and only dust is swirling compared to what else I've seen. I have been using brewersfriend for water chemistry and start with RO.
 
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