Strong Alcohol Smell

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catamount

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Hello,
Just popped off the lid of my primary fermenter after 6 days, and I have a very strong alcohol smell. I have done some reading and found that sometimes this happens when the yeast is pitched at high temperatures, however, I pitched at the suggested temp (76F). Any thoughts or comments?
 

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Hello,
Just popped off the lid of my primary fermenter after 6 days, and I have a very strong alcohol smell. I have done some reading and found that sometimes this happens when the yeast is pitched at high temperatures, however, I pitched at the suggested temp (76F). Any thoughts or comments?
76F is pretty hot, and if fermentation kicked off, it might have even got warmer during fermentation. Do you have a thermometer strip on the outside of the fermenter? That's a good way to check. What yeast did you use? Some yeast strains do fine at hotter temperatures.
 
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catamount

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Safale -04
The side Fermometer says 72-74
 
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catamount

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thanks for your response. I feel like I am way more cautious now than in the past about my process, but this has happened the past 2 out of 3 times.
 

snailsongs

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I do believe that 72-74 is on the hot side.....Most people here seem to advise temps in the low to mid 60's....of course it depends on what you're brewing, but I believe that the early stage of fermentation is the most important to keep the temp under control, as that is when a lot of the fusel (hot) alcohols, diacetyl, and esters are created. That said, I am a noob with only 9-10 batches under my belt over the last few months, though I'm officially thoroughly obsessed with pursuing perfection in brewing.
 
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catamount

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This is a stout btw, a recipe I made up which has been good in the past.
 

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I'm guessing that the "hotness" will fade a bit, but next time try to ferment in the low to mid 60s if you can, and I think you'll notice a bit improvement. Temperature contol is the one best thing I've done to make better beers.
 

dontman

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The one best thing I have done to improve my beers is to not judge them until they been in the bottle for 4-6 weeks after fermenting for 4-6 weeks.

Any earlier than that and any off flavors or others concerns are meaningless. IMO, to try to diagnose a beer that has been in the primary for 6 days is absurd.
 
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catamount

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Thanks for the replies.
dontman: That's understandable, I am just asking because the last time it smelled like this, it remained for about two months (until the keg was kicked).
 

bcirish

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I'm new to this forum and to this obsession. That said I too have a strong smell of alcohol and a reading of 1.022 after 8 days in the primary, my O.G was 1.060. I'm brewing a stout and used Wyeast #1084 wort temp when pitched was 70. I think I'm going to let it got for another week in primary, any thought's?

Thanks
 
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catamount

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seems like the consensus it to give it at least a few more weeks.
 

dontman

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I brew a lot of big beers (OG>1.060) and a lot of Belgian beers that ferment at warm temps. It is par for the course for these beers to have a hot alcohol smell and flavor for quite a while. I don't even taste a stout until it has been in bottle for 6 weeks.
 
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catamount

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dontman: Thanks. I live over the bridge in south jersey. Where do you get your supplies? Home Sweet Homebrew?
 

dontman

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Mostly online. Locally I go to Brew Your Own in Havertown (waaay too expensive) and HSHB downtown (inconvenient during business hours.)
 
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