What are some of the mistakes you made...where your beer still turned out great!

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bierhaus15

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I once forgot to attach my SS braid to the inside of my MLT and didn't realize my mistake until 45 min into the mash. So, I had to dump all 12lbs of wet, hot grain into a pail while I attached the braid and unclogged the valve. By the time I got the grain back into the MLT, the water temperature had dropped substantially and I didn't have conversion. So, I heated up more water, added that, and by the time I had conversion I had used 3x the amount of mash water and had 7 gallons of thin wort.

Then when it came time to add my first hop addition, I managed to knock the bowl containing my 2oz of hop pellets off my picnic table and into the grass. I only recovered about 3/4oz.

In the end, I had 6 gallons of a very plain 3.0% light colored beer that was about as hoppy as a BMC and as tasty as a PBR. And the worst part was that when I served it at my college grad party (as it was the only homebrew I had left) everyone loved it. I even had people telling me it was the BEST beer I had EVER made.

Yeah...what a compliment... :cross:
 

Bernie Brewer

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I like to prop my fermenter on something when racking to the bottling bucket so as to tilt it and get every last drop of beer into the bottling bucket. One time I grabbed the first handy thing I saw- a rusty old hammer. I got all the beer into the bottling bucket. I picked up the fermenter, and sploosh! That old hammer did a perfect swan dive into the bottling bucket. Without thinking, I reached in with my unsanitary arm and fished it out. Damn tasty beer!
 

bashe

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I made an Irish Red and accidentally used hefeweizen yeast. I did not like how it turned out but my room mate drank it all.

The first beer I ever made was a wheat beer. I picked up a kit at my LHBS and the forgot the yeast so I used bread yeast. I also used not temp control in the middle of the summer where my apartment was getting into the 90's during the day. Turned out fine.
 

1stTimer

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The batch I have brewing now (my first) has the rubber deal from the lid in it. It broke off and fell in. Since it had been sanitized only minutes earlier I have just left it in. I was told it would be better to do that than to reach in and get it. I was pissed. Im pretty anal about things in general. We will see how it turns out.
 

BruDaddy

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On my 2nd batch, I decided to try using a fine filter that came with my funnel when I put the wort into primary. The filter clogged continuously and I finally used my hand to clear out the trub off the filter as I siphoned wort into the primary - ugh! Later on the same batch, I was having trouble with my autosiphon and gurgled the whole batch from primary into secondary. Was getting better at it when I racked to the bottling bucket, but the siphon still had constant bubbling throughout.

So, to re-cap, I stuck my (probably) grubby hand in the fresh wort before fermentation, badly oxygenated the beer racking to secondary, added insult to injury racking to the bottling bucket.

The beer was awesome!
 

1stTimer

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This thread really has made me feel a lot better. Brudaddy, I had the same issue with my siphon. The brew was exposed to air for a long time. Maybe 30 mins. Hope it turns out as tasty as yours did.
 

Whisler85

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left a ten gallon kettle filling with hot water on the counter

flooded the laundry room, the hallway, and made it rain in the basement

ive done this three times
 

Kronin

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Wife went to answer her cell phone, hit my arm, her phone flew out of her hand, did a couple back flips and a perfect 10 into the open fermenter..........batch turned out great, but the phone died.
lol I like this one,

Beer 1
Cell 0
 

dontman

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Wife went to answer her cell phone, hit my arm, her phone flew out of her hand, did a couple back flips and a perfect 10 into the open fermenter..........batch turned out great, but the phone died.
This does answer the question "which would win in a battle to the death between modern and ancient techonlogies."
 

nebben

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#1- Mr. Beer (2000 AD) : the beer looked like chocolate milk. I threw in yeast from foil packet into nearly boiling wort. It was a miracle some survived. Bottled (!?) into 16oz PET water bottles. From brewday (or mistake-day..) to drinking couldn't have been more than 3 weeks. It looked like chocolate milk and tasted alcoholy.....nothing good here for the baby 3 week old beer.

----

That being said, my first real batch last year was stirred vigorously for two days after I pitched yeast, since I thought beer fermentation was the same as wine fermentation, which it isn't. So that whole mantra of "don't let oxygen into the beer once fermentation hast started" can be bent a ways without breaking it! Also of note, that batch was in a home depot bucket with a leaky lid. No bubbles from the airlock ever. I sampled with hydrometer two times in the first week. Ha! I bottled from huge IKEA stainless bowls since I didn't have a spare bucket (or any carboy). Oh, and I never strained the hops out of the wort...that brought a "dump the beer" response from a friend at work.

Luckily I bottled on schedule and three weeks later, it is definitely beer. Amber colored, Northern Brewer hopped, straight up good beer. I had an IPA at Red Rock Brew-pub the day after sampling the 3 week old bottled beer that tasted almost identical to mine. It would seem that I broke a few rules and did some faux-pas , but it came out awesome.

No big deal that I shot for a steamer and hit IPA instead!!! :rockin:
 

nebben

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I neglected to use a blow off tube on a 91 point strong ale and the lid blew off my fermenter. It spent about half the day uncovered, wort everywhere, and it turned out just fine.
Have you seen Anchor Brewing's fermentation setup? Completely open, foam everywhere. Totally awesome looking at the work that many trillions of yeast can do!
 

TheH2

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Dropped better bottle full of 5 gallons of my Saison. Thought for sure there would be aeration, nope, made great beer. Thank God it wasn’t a car boy. If it wasn’t for the horror stories I’d read on this site I certainly would have never bought a better bottle, Thanks all.

O-ring fell into fermenter, left it in the fermenter and created a seal with my air lock using plumbers tape, still made great beer.

Dropped my turkey baster into beer after primary, done it just after pitching the yeast too, and still made beer.

Forgot to zest orange before boil, realized when it was time to add (last couple minutes of boil), ended up grating my knuckled a few times because I was moving quickly (vampire beer anyone?). Beer turned out great.

Wort chiller leaked, got a decent amount of hose water in my wort, still made beer.

Siphon busted so I poured the beer into the bottling bucket. I thought it tasted like crap but had a few friends that actually enjoyed it (does that count because I could pawn it off on someone).

Had beer erupt out of the fermenter, put the top back on, beer turned out great. Cleaning wasn’t much fun.

Pitched yeast at 60 degrees and pitched yeast at 80 degrees, still made beer.

Mash tun wouldn’t drain after the mash. Used strainers, buckets, pots and made it work. Still hit target OG and beer will turn out fantastic.
 

mr_clean

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I left coriander in the beer,i was suppose to remove it after the boil.Made the beer taste like mustard,which i hate.My friend loved it though.
 

SGT-RIEL

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my first batch ever, i was so freaked out about messing up that i pitched the yeast when the wort was still about 100 degrees easy. I didn't stir it in or anything the beer turned out to be the best beer i have ever drank.
 

neuron555

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Before I got a chiller, I made the mistake of pouring too hot wort into a Better Bottle. Melted the h*** out of it. I was able to save the beer, but SWMBO and my son nearly wet themselves laughing at me.
 

TexLaw

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Here are some of my greatest hits (most are common):

- Ran a good half gallon or so of hose water into brewkettle.

- Dunked all sorts of unsanitary things into chilled wort (some intentionally, some not).

- Pushed a stopper through the neck of primary. I had no spare, so I spent about 30 minutes trying to fish the thing out with a straightened coat hanger. I finally gave up and drove to the LHBS for another. Three guys gave me experienced, sympathetic nods and suggested I buy one a half-size larger. I took their suggestion, and I bought another spare.

- Measured my mash temperature after doughing-in. When it read 165F, I freaked and added ice to get it down to the 150 I wanted. After 45 minutes, I had virtually no conversion and thought I must've killed off my amylases, even though it had only been a few minutes. After ten minutes of fretting, I measured the mash temperature with another thermometer, which read 140F. Yet another thermometer confirmed the second reading. Without time for a decoction, I quickly heated my already 180F sparge water to boiling and added whatever it took to get up to 150F (at least a gallon). The soupy mash converted fine.

- Added 9.5% Centennial hops when I thought I was adding 5% Cascades, and visa versa.

- Added boiling water for the second part of a split batch sparge and a grain bed that was already around 170F.

- Completely forgot about yeast until after chilling wort, so yeast went straight from the WL vial in the fridge into 80F wort. It was Summer, and the days before I had a pre-chiller.

- Yeah, I had the boiling IC exhast water run down my leg, too.

All those beers were, at least drinkable. Nearly all of them were actually quite good, even if some took a little longer to round out (like the boiling sparge one). I hope I never have to scrape yeast off the counter, though!


TL
 

sparkyaber

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My brewing partner was lifting a full carboy onto the counter on bottling day, when the carboy fell out of the brewbelt and crashed landed on the floor. Of course he had it all the way up to the counter level. Everything got shook up an still turned out a great ipa.
Of course all of the unsanitary things that have been mentioned previously have been executed regularly.
 

FxdGrMind

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"Mistake"??? I've NEVER..... well maybe once or twice..... or....

I think to be honest it's the other way arround at the moment. When have I NOT made a mistake... As far as I've been conserned and my guests seem to prove it out. The two beers so far have come out with splendid results.

I've missed hops additions, managed to push stoppers through my carboy (2ndary), sucked up "Sludge" from the bottom of my brew kettle into primary so as to get 2" of sediment, washed my aluminum kettle and scowered the "Black" oxide off the inside... (then I read the thread here), pitched my yeast at 75 deg and at 62 deg, fermented ales cold (61 deg) and warm (72 deg), had a foaming mess on my hands when the heff almost exploaded as the airvalve plugged (foam shooting out of the tupe 4-6 inches)

And I still don't have the Carbonation thing down yet.... my heff is over carb'd and my Alt bier (under)....???? I don't know what I've done there and have given up trying to fix it... the beer still tastes good.. I either drink it fast (alt) or wait for the foam to settle (heff).

But in my book any of the beers I've made beat paying $10 for a 6 pack!
 

Jmac

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Where to start..

dumped out yeast all over my counter top before pitching. Had to run to the LHBS to pick up some yeast.

Poured too hot of wort into better bottle and deformed it.

over shot sparge water amount trying to get every last drop of surgar out the grains and had to boil off forever.

Temps have never been stable while brewing here in Texas with no fridge to use.

Knocked off part of the spout on my cooler mash tun sending hot wort over me and my wife while trying to close it up..

That is all but pretty sure I have forgot a few...
 

pepper

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doing a partial grain my partner and I started boiling the grain-mash and at the end of the boil realized we never added any extract because it looked so tasty just like it was. added the extract, 15 minutes of extra boiling and it came out a stellar IPA.
 

TampaTim

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I dropped my swiss army knife in a batch of EdWort's Haus Ale a few weeks ago. In my efforts to recover it with long handled tools, I dipped my crud encrusted welding gauntlet that I use with my BBQ rig in the wort.

I bottled last Friday, and couldn't resist to try it Wednesday. (It's carbed, but needs more of course.)

Hands down it's the best brew I've made (of four).

Matter of fact...it's awesome.
 

trimpy

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Doubled a batch, but forgot to double the hops. Was going for a 1.050 IPA and ended up with a tame 1.050 pale ale that was still tasty.
 

ghpeel

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I was using an electric thermometer that I THOUGHT was accurate on a partial mash. It was reading 160 degrees, so i threw ice water in. After a pint or 2, there was no change in the temp reading. Added another pint or two. No change. Confused, i reached in to shake the probe and the reading shot down to like 110. Grrrr ... have sense learned to jostle that probe every now and again for it to "refresh." Beer turned out thinner than it should have, I think, but still tasty!

A little worse was that once after taking a gravity reading on a Belgian abbey ale, I forgot to put the stopper and airlock back on the carboy. Must have left it off for an hour or two before realizing it. Was a real newby at the time (actually still am maybe...) so I was wringing my hands for the next week or two. Beer turned out to be the best Belgian I've done.
 

Stef1966

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Must have been my 3rd or 4th batch, was desperately waiting for some signs of fermentation in primary only to realize 2 days later i had forgot to even put the yeast in there in the first place... duh!
 

sterling214

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Have destroyed 3, yes 3 digital probe thermometers. The last one was bought at the lhbs and was supposed to be submersible. I'm really starting to doubt the temps I was reading during the mash of my last beer, but it tastes good so far for green beer.
 

GuitarBob

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I'm only on my fith batch and I already have a couple of blunders.

My 3rd batch using a Mr. Beer kit I misread the instructions and accidently used double the amount of hops I was supposed to. Beer ended up a little more bitter then I would have liked, but it was still a pretty decent beer, in fact I only have two left.

My 2nd batch I screwed up because I'm such a cheap ass. This was another Mr. Beer kit and the recipe only called for one can of hopped extract and one can of unhopped extract. Problem was I also had a bag of booster that came with it, and being too cheap to just throw it away I dumped into the wort and used it anyway. One month later the beer tasted like bubble gum flavored cough syrup.

It's been two months and I havn't thrown out that 2nd batch in hopes that in a year from now it will taste great. I guess the lesson here is that newbies shouldn't tweak recipes too much, especially if it's only to save 1$ worth of corn sugar.
 

CnnmnSchnpps

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great thread...

First batch, poured too hot water into better bottle to cool, and covered with plastic wrap. Physics took over, and the bb started to compress as the steam in it chilled. It now has a vaguely triangular shape.

Same batch, didn't realize I actually had a 5 gal BB until I poured in all the wort. Whoops. Attached an airlock anyway and woke up with a ton of crap all over the floor. The apartment smelled great for a while, though :)

Beer has only been in bottles for 2 weeks but seems to be coming along just fine
 

madcapstudios

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Very first batch. Extract kit. Forgot to add hops. Having read Papazian, figured "RDWHAB it'll turn out fine."

It didn't.
 

IrishLass

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On Saturday, Dan and I decided to bottle both our Apfelwein and the big IPA he's super proud of... while we brewed our 90 Shilling clone. I guess we had too much going on, because partway through bottling the IPA I looked at the stove and noticed the corn sugar boiling away. Oops. We dumped the bottles back into the bottling bucket *** added the corn sugar *** and started over. Could have been a much worse mistake, I'm just sorry it had to happen to that specific brew.
 

coffeegod

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I fermented a brown ale at 80 degrees for two weeks. At the end my beer tasted like a belgium tripple not a brown but it was a damn good belgium tripple.
 

Pete79

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Not beer related but I messed up while racking my first batch of apfelwein to my bottling bucket. I had been been sipping on a sample glass and bent over to pick something up. I accidentally spilled about half of what was left in my glass into the almost full bottling bucket. Still turned out great!
 

Catch-22

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I was starting to pitch once and my dog came in from outside. It was raining and he proceeded to shake over my open fermenting bucket. Beer turned out pretty good. Slight collie taste but pretty good.:mug:
 

Beerdrop

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I did the ole 'forgot to close the spigot' trick on my primary bucket. So I'm cooling my wort through a plate chiller and focusing more on the connections on the chiller than the better part of a 1/2 gallon of wort on the basement floor. Beer turned out great though.


Boilover? Check
Too much priming sugar? Check
Unsanitized object(s) in wort? Check

Sanitize Airlock by BOILING (note avatar)? Check

Others? Not check (yet)
:eek:
 
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