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rodwha

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So my fiance had bought me a Beer College brewing kit. The DVD won't play and so I have looked into alternative directions. I never saw anything about water in the airlock.
My Cooper's Lager has been fermenting for about a week and a half, and was moved a few days ago. It smells like stale beer when you get close.
Is there a way to tell if the batch has been tainted? Are my odds good that it's been tainted?
I haven't noticed any movement from the airlock.
My next batch will be much better...I promise!
Thanks,
Bob
 

Shaneoco1981

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The only way to know is to taste it. I am guessing it's fine, but there is a small chance it's infected. Yeast are strong little critters. They don't like to give up a good living spot very easily. But next time you take some out to take a gravity reading, take a sip. If it tastes like warm, flat beer, then you are good. If it tastes sour and nothing like what you expected, then there is a chance it's infected. One other small question, you are doing a lager. Are actually lagering your batch? (Let it ferment at 50 F then Chill for 3 months (I think) at lower to mid 30's?) If not, that will definitely affect the flavor and how it smells. Just a thought.
 

HH60gunner

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Most likely your fine. So did you not put water in your airlock? If so then you're not going to see any movement in the airlock lol. If it smells like beer, most likely it's going to taste like beer. Just remember that before you carbonate it, it's also going to taste like stale beer.
 

DeafSmith

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One other small question, you are doing a lager. Are actually lagering your batch? (Let it ferment at 50 F then Chill for 3 months (I think) at lower to mid 30's?) If not, that will definitely affect the flavor and how it smells. Just a thought.
I'm not familiar with the Cooper's kits, but I know that some of the so-called "lagers" in beginner kits use ale yeast and are designed to be fermented at ale temperatures - maybe that is the situation here?
 

Calder

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It should be good. There are many professional brewers who use open fermenters for the initial fermemtation. The yeast will have created a CO2 blanket that will protect the beer.

Taste it; if it tastes like vinegar, its done for, otherwise it is OK.
 
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rodwha

rodwha

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GRRR!!! My friend, who has been brewing for a few years now, told me, despite what the Cooper's people said, that cold fermentation wasn't necessary.
Cooper's said (Canada?) that during the summer they ferment in an additional cold water bucket to keep the temp down.
So, no, I am not cold lagering (spl?) my lager as the temp inside is 73-74*.
My lager will be a bit stout as it's supposed to yield 6 gals and my fermenter is only 5. According to the hydrometer it ought to be between 6.8 and 7.5% :tank:
I assume it's too late to cold ferment it?
 
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