waiting for my first batch

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Active Member
May 14, 2005
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Erie, Pennsylvania
Well, I made my own first batch of beer. Now I wait as it carbonates.

I held a bottle up to the light. It looked like it had clouds in it. I can only assume that means my first batch of beer won't be as perfect tasting as I used to dream while I stared into the glass carboy night after night.

After I bottled my beer there was a little left in the pail. I poured it into a glass and tasted it a tiny bit. It tasted watery. Does that mean anything?

I used a whole cup of corn sugar instead of 3/4 cup to prime the beer. I still find it hard to believe that little bit of sugar will carbonate my 52 bottles of beer to satisfaction.

Oh gosh, after all I spent and waited, I'd be very upset if it sucked.

I pray to the beer gods.

the cloudiness is normal. your beer is unfiltered unlike most commercial beers that you buy. Hefeweizens being the exception of course. with homebrew, you need to be careful not to shake the bottle up too much when you go to drink it. and yopu need to carefully pour it into a glass for consumption. Drinking it from the bottle will give you a nice cloudy, chunky mix of beer and sediment. So you should carefully pour it off into a glass and try to leave the sediment behind in the bottle.

we were using one full cup of corn sugar for a 5 gallon batch, but generally, our beer gushes when opened. so we will be scaling back to 3/4 cup from now on to see if that alleviates the problem.
I wouldn't be to worried about how it turns out. It might not taste quite like you expected, but by the end of the beer you are going to want another one- and then another one, and then...

I always found, when I bottled, that the first one or two sips from a bottle tasted a bit strange.
I sample my beers all along the process...original wort, transfer to the seconadry (I check the gravity and sample it after taking the measurements).

After transferring to the secondary I harvest the yeast.

I even taste the yeast (not drink) left over in the bucket. If it tastes bad then....? If it tastes and smell good then I reuse it. :D
I wouldn't be concerned about the cloudy beer in the bottles. It will probably clear pretty well over a week or two. As far as the watery taste goes, I usually find that flat beer tastes kinda watery. It seems to take the carbonation to set the beer to life. Give it a chance.

As far as the corn sugar goes, be careful with this batch. After a couple weeks, chill one of them and open it over the sink. If its chilled, I doubt it will gush, but overcarbonated beer tends to turn to foam as soon as it hits your glass. You may end up pouring a cup of foam and having to let the head die down a whie before you can drink it.

If your beer turns out like this, my suggestion is to chill it ice cold, pop the top, let the bottle sit open for 10 minutes or so, then pour. The beer will still be very lively. Overcarbonated beers tend to churn up the sediment on the bottom of the bottle when you pour. So pour carefully, slowly, and patiently. Also, it seems that with my overcarbonated beers, the longer it stood in the glass and bubbled, the better it tasted. Maybe some of the off flavors from the yeast and sediment were bubbling off. I don't know.

Now I always use 3/4 cup corn sugar. I add a bit more if the style calls for higher carbonation, and I'll use a bit less if the yeild wasn't that great and I don't have 5 gallons. But I'm talking a couple teaspoon's difference. 1/4 cup of additional corn sugar is a bit on the high side for my tastes.

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