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Home Brew kit gone bad

Discussion in 'Homebrewing' started by FelixTrips, Mar 12, 2012.

  1. FelixTrips

    FelixTrips Aspirant (30) Nebraska Dec 29, 2011

    Ok I just brewed my 2nd batch of beer still nervous about what I am doing I decided to do the same beer kit I did for my first batch witch was a Pilsner. I did this because the first batch turned out great and wanted to see if I could make it better by adjusting how I brewed it. The first batch I followed the directions that came with the kit. The second time I wanted to try some techniques for a better beer out of "The Complete Joy of Homebrewing", this involved a long brew time and re hydrating the yeast before pitching it. I knew just a couple days after things were different the beer was not fermenting nearly as fast as my first batch and did not produce the yeast cake like the first batch. Now after bottled and ready to drink I am finding the beer is sweeter than normal and some bottles seem completely flat with no head and others have a fizzy taste like a soda and do produce a head but quickly loses it. Has anyone had this happen of know what I could have possibly done wrong? I am getting ready for my 3rd batch but don't want to wind up with the same mistakes.
  2. utahbeerdude

    utahbeerdude Savant (465) Utah May 2, 2006

    Sounds like the yeast let you down. It may be because you let them down (too hot rehydrating?) or because the yeast were simply too old (and mostly dead). A lesson to be learned here is to pay attention to what your beer is telling you, which in this case was that the fermentation was not going so well. A more experience brewer would (or at least should) have responded by taking a gravity reading. If the reading was too high, then more yeast could have been pitched. You are now becoming that more experienced brewer.
  3. VikeMan

    VikeMan Champion (820) Pennsylvania Jul 12, 2009

    This difference between bottles sounds like uneven distribution of your priming sugar. And the quickly fading head sounds like a lack of proteins or the presence of 'foam negative' substances (e.g. fats or oils or cleaner/sanitizer surfactants). What was your recipe? And how did you clean and sanitize your gear and bottles?
  4. did you take any gravity readings? it sounds to me like you may have bottled too early/maybe the yeast quit out on you.

    do you know what the ambient temperature of your room was? or the temperature you pitched the yeast at?

    I've read things saying to hydrate your yeast, and other articles saying not to. Personally i just dump the yeast packet(s) into the wort and let it go.

    Are you using lager yeast? my advice would be to stick to ales until you get a lagering fridge/freezer and a stir plate for a yeast starter.