Brewer Forum

 Forgot password?
 Register
Search
View: 186|Reply: 22

First Brew = Unsuccessful

[Copy link]

4

Threads

36

Posts

0

Credits

Vip1

Rank: 1

Credits
0
Post time 2010-4-2 08:15:00 | Show all posts |Read mode
So, my first batch (Avery IPA Clone) was a failure. It tastes fine I suppose, but it is severely over-carbonated. Over-carbonated to the point of no longer drinkable. I guess I used too much priming sugar...a silly mistake that ruined 5 gallons of beer. I guess I will know better when I bottle my next batch. I hope I am not the only one that has ruined a batch because of a dumb mistake. I would definitely appreciate some stories of careless mistakes for encouragement.
Thanks,
Mark
author posts Hot post
Reply

Use magic Report

3

Threads

166

Posts

0

Credits

Vip1

Rank: 1

Credits
0
Post time 2010-4-2 09:16:00 | Show all posts
Hang in there.  Most of us fucked up our first batch.
Usually overcarbonation is due to one of 4 things:
1) too much priming sugar
2) uneven distribution of the priming sugar (some will be bottle bombs, others will be flat)
3) sanitation - if the beer tastes sour or funky, then this is why
4) underattenuated - new brewers are over-eager and bottle before the beer has finished.
Just brew again.  Check out  and read the "how to make your first extract batch" chapter and see what you might have done wrong.
BTW- 3/4 cup of priming sugar (dextrose - aka Corn Sugar) is the standard 5 ounce size and it will carbonate 5 gallons in 12 oz bottles to about 2.5 volumes, which is considered to be medium carbonation.
HTH--B'Dawg
BJCP GM3 Judge & Mead
"Lunch Meat.  It's an acquired taste....."  -- Mylo
Reply Support Not support

Use magic Report

6

Threads

12

Posts

0

Credits

Vip1

Rank: 1

Credits
0
Post time 2010-4-2 09:21:00 | Show all posts
The bad news - there is a near endless combination of ways to mess up a batch
The good news - take lots of notes and observations to build up your skill level. Read up on some of the better brewing books - post questions - ponder answers
A very simple way to carbonate (and this is tuned to exactly 5gal)
- pint of water
- 3/4 cup corn sugar for restrained carbonation  --- 1 cup corn sugar for really fizzy
there are 4 table spoons in 1/4 cup --- so that gives you 4 gradients between 3/4cup to 1 cup
Hang in there and keep brewing. You might make your next couple of batches very simple medium amber ales or a pale ale just to keep things simple.
I've got a British IPA in the primary (batch number 20) which is looking that I may have fouled something up .... but you never know -- a few batches ago I was sure my first shot at a cream ale was toast. Its turned out to be a very good brew.Last edited by Old_Skool on Sat Apr 03, 2010 7:36 am, edited 1 time in total.
Reply Support Not support

Use magic Report

9

Threads

721

Posts

0

Credits

Vip1

Rank: 1

Credits
0
Post time 2010-4-3 06:28:00 | Show all posts
my first was pretty messed up. I figured due to sanitation issues. it had a good head and aroma, but tasted like a cider vinegar.I killed a zombie and ate it's brains. That's how I became the Zombie King.
Reply Support Not support

Use magic Report

4

Threads

36

Posts

0

Credits

Vip1

Rank: 1

Credits
0
 Author| Post time 2010-4-3 10:56:00 | Show all posts
Thanks guys. Very helpful. I used 5oz of sugar and 1 cup of water. I think it was distributed evenly. I put it in the fermenting bucket and then siphoned into it. So, I think I can eliminate too much sugar and uneven distribution.
So that leaves, what I would consider, the two worse of the four possibilities...under-attenuation and sanitization. Hopefully it's not sanitization, because the batch I have fermenting right now I made virtually no changes in the process. But, I was very careful to make sure everything was sanitized well.
I started reading one of Dave Miller's books but it was all very overwhelming and I didn't understand a lot of what I was reading. So, I decided I would make a batch or two, learn a little as I go, and pick it back up. I think it may not be the best book for beginners.
I am fermenting an amber ale right now. Hopefully it turns out better. I am not too discouraged. I'm sure I will get better and I have a lot to look forward to and a lot to learn.
Reply Support Not support

Use magic Report

1

Threads

22

Posts

0

Credits

Vip1

Rank: 1

Credits
0
Post time 2010-4-3 11:18:00 | Show all posts

I find 5 oz in 5 gallons to make a very spritzy beer.  Try dialing it down to 4.  Of course, I like my beers to be a little more gently carbonated.  For something like an amber, where you want to taste the malt, that will really help it balance out.
I like Dave Miller's books, but he's very technical.  I'd recommend how to brew, by Palmer.  It's geared both for beginners and nerds (he usually explains things simply, then reiterates with lots of technical details you don't necessarily need to know unless you're a big nerd like me).EGADS!  3 MONTHS WITHOUT BREWING?  MOVING YOU SUCK....  NEVER AGAIN
In Kegerator - Hopfen Weiss, Best Bitter
In Primary - Baby Baine Barleywine
Next up: Petite Saison
Reply Support Not support

Use magic Report

0

Threads

1

Posts

0

Credits

Vip1

Rank: 1

Credits
0
Post time 2010-4-3 11:34:00 | Show all posts
My attempt at the Mirror Pond Pale Ale recipe from CYBI tasted really good when I kegged it, and was crystal clear.  Six weeks later, it was cloudy and sour.  No matter how long you brew you will still make mistakes.  Fortunately they are just farther and farther apart."Mash, I made you my bitch!" -Tasty
Reply Support Not support

Use magic Report

4

Threads

36

Posts

0

Credits

Vip1

Rank: 1

Credits
0
 Author| Post time 2010-4-3 11:34:40 | Show all posts

I don't know what the fuck you're talking about.  6 years and not a single fuck up... unless you count this past January when I left the cleaning water running into the mash-tun flooding the kitchen while my buddy & I stood 15 feet away, oblivious that the kitchen was now under 4" of water and it was starting to drip downstairs.  Or maybe that time I added way too much primer and when popping the caps with a Bic lighter outside I could get a full 17 seconds of hangtime (no shitting you, I actually counted one that high).  Or the time I was trying to make mead while pretty much obliterated after a regular brew session and effectively dumped a few gallons of a 50/50 honey/water mix on the floor, effectively sticking everything exactly where it was at that point in addition to sending a calling card to every fly on the block (thankfully this wasn't the same time I had the bear wandering around in the back yard).Lee
"Show me on this doll where the internet hurt you."
"Every zoo is a petting zoo if you man the fuck up."

5ohbe1ofjxw.gif

5ohbe1ofjxw.gif

BN Army // 13th Mountain Division

You didn't say how long you left the first one in fermenting.  If you are doing an American Amber right now, you are probably using either US-05, or WLP001, or WYeast 1056 (all the same great yeast).  Leave it alone in the primary for 2 full weeks.  You should be able to take a gravity reading the night before you plan to bottle/secondary and another one the next day.  Both should be in the 1.008-1.013 range, and they should read the same value 2 days in a row.  If it is lower, then don't worry about that, but if it is much higher than that, wait a few more days and measure again.  When you get 2 days in a row with no changes, then you should be safe to prime and bottle with no risk of bottle grenades.
If you get a weird ass reading like 1.022 for 2 days in a row, then rouse the yeast and see if that helps knock it down.
HTH--B'Dawg
BJCP GM3 Judge & Mead
"Lunch Meat.  It's an acquired taste....."  -- Mylo
Reply Support Not support

Use magic Report

9

Threads

721

Posts

0

Credits

Vip1

Rank: 1

Credits
0
Post time 2010-4-4 06:05:00 | Show all posts
Well, I left the first on fermenting for 2 weeks, then bottled. It was .002 lower than the recipe. And, yes I am using Wyeast 1056. So, in that case, that would eliminate under-attenuation, right? And, this may be a silly question, but I don't understand the point of a secondary fermentation. I mean how important is that?
Reply Support Not support

Use magic Report

0

Threads

11

Posts

0

Credits

Vip1

Rank: 1

Credits
0
Post time 2010-4-5 02:06:00 | Show all posts
secondary is usually unnecessary unless you want to add flavors (like fruit or oak) after primary is done. before I started making yeast starters, I'd secondary my big beers with something like WLP099 or a Belgium strain. I've learned since then.I killed a zombie and ate it's brains. That's how I became the Zombie King.
Reply Support Not support

Use magic Report

9

Threads

28

Posts

0

Credits

Vip1

Rank: 1

Credits
0
Post time 2010-4-5 02:59:00 | Show all posts
Rarely is secondary fermentation critical.  Its a great idea if there's a compelling reason like a very high gravity beer that needs some time hanging out with the yeast after fermentation to work out off flavors.  Or if you prefer an extended dry hop.  Or if you just can't predict when you're going to have time to bottle.  However, in most instances you can go right from primary fermenter to priming pail to bottles.  Just make sure fermentation is done.
Ditto on reading How to Brew by John Palmer.
Reply Support Not support

Use magic Report

3

Threads

166

Posts

0

Credits

Vip1

Rank: 1

Credits
0
Post time 2010-4-6 04:23:00 | Show all posts
My first batch took 6 days to start fermenting...I thought I was toast. It eventually took off, but in the end, it tasted a little spicy. It was a Red Ale so I'm not 100% sure why it tasted like that.
I've since changed both my yeast and sanitation practices.
Do another brew. No better way than just going for it!Mike
Mike's Brew Review
Mike's Brew Review Newsletter
Reply Support Not support

Use magic Report

0

Threads

1

Posts

0

Credits

Vip1

Rank: 1

Credits
0
Post time 2010-4-6 06:05:00 | Show all posts
Spicy-
You are probably tasting phenolics.-B'Dawg
BJCP GM3 Judge & Mead
"Lunch Meat.  It's an acquired taste....."  -- Mylo
Reply Support Not support

Use magic Report

3

Threads

166

Posts

0

Credits

Vip1

Rank: 1

Credits
0
Post time 2010-4-6 07:09:00 | Show all posts

There's a treasure trove of asshattery here:
viewtopic.php?f=2&t=10138&hilit=horror+stories
Read, rinse, and do not repeat.
Reply Support Not support

Use magic Report

6

Threads

12

Posts

0

Credits

Vip1

Rank: 1

Credits
0
Post time 2010-4-6 07:09:53 | Show all posts
Wow... That is a boat load of asshatery indeed. HaNot that I have a deep well of knowledge, but the dumbest mistake I almost made was dumping a batch.
My first batch (kit nut brown) was horrendous for the first few bottles.  If I could go back in time I might be able to accurately describe the flavors, but my impressions at the time ranged from "aghckt... what the...?" to "that's the worst f'n thing Ive ever drank."
Fast forward a few weeks... "Hey, that tastes like beer!"
I came this close to dumping a batch that, while not an award winner, was a drinkable 5 gallons that I knew I could improve. Patience is the toughest part of homebrewing.  Now I just try to brew too much, it allows for proper aging.BN Army Private First Class   
Fermenting: Lucky Day Pale
Kegged: Buckwheat Bulgur & Barley Saison, K├Âlsch, Styrian Celia Grisette, Single Dubbel, Winter Maple Strong Brown Ale
Reply Support Not support

Use magic Report

9

Threads

721

Posts

0

Credits

Vip1

Rank: 1

Credits
0
Post time 2010-4-6 07:10:43 | Show all posts

By any chance was that a Hex Nut Brown kit form Midwest Supply? I had a batch of the same last year which behaved exactlt the same way. I dumped a couple bottles out after tasting but came to my senses and let the rest sit for another 2-3 months. After that they tasted pretty ok.
@ markOK: Prior to bottling,  something I do to help ensure an even distribution is give the brew a VERY gentle stir with a sanitized spoon after racking it on top of the bottling sugar solution. It works pretty well for me."What a piece of work is man! How noble.....oh, fuck it, let's get a drink and forget the whole damned thing." -Mr. Newbury - Gross Pointe BlankSo, my first batch (Avery IPA Clone) was a failure. It tastes fine I suppose, but it is severely over-carbonated. Over-carbonated to the point of no longer drinkable. I guess I used too much priming sugar...a silly mistake that ruined 5 gallons of beer. I guess I will know better when I bottle my next batch. I hope I am not the only one that has ruined a batch because of a dumb mistake. I would definitely appreciate some stories of careless mistakes for encouragement.
Thanks,
Mark
Reply Support Not support

Use magic Report

4

Threads

36

Posts

0

Credits

Vip1

Rank: 1

Credits
0
 Author| Post time 2010-4-2 09:16:00 | Show all posts
Hang in there.  Most of us fucked up our first batch.
Usually overcarbonation is due to one of 4 things:
1) too much priming sugar
2) uneven distribution of the priming sugar (some will be bottle bombs, others will be flat)
3) sanitation - if the beer tastes sour or funky, then this is why
4) underattenuated - new brewers are over-eager and bottle before the beer has finished.
Just brew again.  Check out  and read the "how to make your first extract batch" chapter and see what you might have done wrong.
BTW- 3/4 cup of priming sugar (dextrose - aka Corn Sugar) is the standard 5 ounce size and it will carbonate 5 gallons in 12 oz bottles to about 2.5 volumes, which is considered to be medium carbonation.
HTH--B'Dawg
BJCP GM3 Judge & Mead
"Lunch Meat.  It's an acquired taste....."  -- Mylo
Reply Support Not support

Use magic Report

1

Threads

22

Posts

0

Credits

Vip1

Rank: 1

Credits
0
Post time 2010-4-2 09:21:00 | Show all posts
The bad news - there is a near endless combination of ways to mess up a batch
The good news - take lots of notes and observations to build up your skill level. Read up on some of the better brewing books - post questions - ponder answers
A very simple way to carbonate (and this is tuned to exactly 5gal)
- pint of water
- 3/4 cup corn sugar for restrained carbonation  --- 1 cup corn sugar for really fizzy
there are 4 table spoons in 1/4 cup --- so that gives you 4 gradients between 3/4cup to 1 cup
Hang in there and keep brewing. You might make your next couple of batches very simple medium amber ales or a pale ale just to keep things simple.
I've got a British IPA in the primary (batch number 20) which is looking that I may have fouled something up .... but you never know -- a few batches ago I was sure my first shot at a cream ale was toast. Its turned out to be a very good brew.Last edited by Old_Skool on Sat Apr 03, 2010 7:36 am, edited 1 time in total.
Reply Support Not support

Use magic Report

0

Threads

83

Posts

0

Credits

Vip1

Rank: 1

Credits
0
Post time 2010-4-3 06:28:00 | Show all posts
my first was pretty messed up. I figured due to sanitation issues. it had a good head and aroma, but tasted like a cider vinegar.I killed a zombie and ate it's brains. That's how I became the Zombie King.
Reply Support Not support

Use magic Report

4

Threads

36

Posts

0

Credits

Vip1

Rank: 1

Credits
0
 Author| Post time 2010-4-3 10:56:00 | Show all posts
Thanks guys. Very helpful. I used 5oz of sugar and 1 cup of water. I think it was distributed evenly. I put it in the fermenting bucket and then siphoned into it. So, I think I can eliminate too much sugar and uneven distribution.
So that leaves, what I would consider, the two worse of the four possibilities...under-attenuation and sanitization. Hopefully it's not sanitization, because the batch I have fermenting right now I made virtually no changes in the process. But, I was very careful to make sure everything was sanitized well.
I started reading one of Dave Miller's books but it was all very overwhelming and I didn't understand a lot of what I was reading. So, I decided I would make a batch or two, learn a little as I go, and pick it back up. I think it may not be the best book for beginners.
I am fermenting an amber ale right now. Hopefully it turns out better. I am not too discouraged. I'm sure I will get better and I have a lot to look forward to and a lot to learn.
Reply Support Not support

Use magic Report

3

Threads

166

Posts

0

Credits

Vip1

Rank: 1

Credits
0
Post time 2010-4-3 11:18:00 | Show all posts

I find 5 oz in 5 gallons to make a very spritzy beer.  Try dialing it down to 4.  Of course, I like my beers to be a little more gently carbonated.  For something like an amber, where you want to taste the malt, that will really help it balance out.
I like Dave Miller's books, but he's very technical.  I'd recommend how to brew, by Palmer.  It's geared both for beginners and nerds (he usually explains things simply, then reiterates with lots of technical details you don't necessarily need to know unless you're a big nerd like me).EGADS!  3 MONTHS WITHOUT BREWING?  MOVING YOU SUCK....  NEVER AGAIN
In Kegerator - Hopfen Weiss, Best Bitter
In Primary - Baby Baine Barleywine
Next up: Petite Saison
Reply Support Not support

Use magic Report

3

Threads

166

Posts

0

Credits

Vip1

Rank: 1

Credits
0
Post time 2010-4-3 11:34:00 | Show all posts
My attempt at the Mirror Pond Pale Ale recipe from CYBI tasted really good when I kegged it, and was crystal clear.  Six weeks later, it was cloudy and sour.  No matter how long you brew you will still make mistakes.  Fortunately they are just farther and farther apart."Mash, I made you my bitch!" -Tasty
Reply Support Not support

Use magic Report

9

Threads

721

Posts

0

Credits

Vip1

Rank: 1

Credits
0
Post time 2010-4-3 03:51:00 | Show all posts

I don't know what the fuck you're talking about.  6 years and not a single fuck up... unless you count this past January when I left the cleaning water running into the mash-tun flooding the kitchen while my buddy & I stood 15 feet away, oblivious that the kitchen was now under 4" of water and it was starting to drip downstairs.  Or maybe that time I added way too much primer and when popping the caps with a Bic lighter outside I could get a full 17 seconds of hangtime (no shitting you, I actually counted one that high).  Or the time I was trying to make mead while pretty much obliterated after a regular brew session and effectively dumped a few gallons of a 50/50 honey/water mix on the floor, effectively sticking everything exactly where it was at that point in addition to sending a calling card to every fly on the block (thankfully this wasn't the same time I had the bear wandering around in the back yard).Lee
"Show me on this doll where the internet hurt you."
"Every zoo is a petting zoo if you man the fuck up."


BN Army // 13th Mountain Division
Reply Support Not support

Use magic Report

You have to log in before you can reply Login | Register

Points Rules

Archiver|Mobile|Brewer Forum

2023-4-1 19:34 GMT-8 , Processed in 0.326711 second(s), 37 queries .

Powered by Discuz! X3.4

Copyright © 2001-2022, Tencent Cloud.

Quick Reply To Top Return to the list