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General Category => Yeast and Fermentation => Topic started by: gmac on November 19, 2012, 03:59:25 PM

Title: Mould - should I dump?
Post by: gmac on November 19, 2012, 03:59:25 PM
I've got a sour beer that's been in a carboy for about 5 months now.  I thought it was forming a pellicle a while ago but now I think it's just getting mouldy.  I looked at it yesterday and I think it has a penicillium infection of some sort.  The mould is sort of blue/green and looks very similar to bread mould.  It's forming bubble which look quite dry and powdery on top.  I tried to get a picture but through the carboy all I got was reflections.

So, do I dump this or just leave and let it keep chugging away?  I've been asking questions about this one for a while now, first attempt so I'm not sure what to do.  I really haven't opened this much so I think the mould, if that's what it is, has taken a long time to get going.  Obviously I don't want to be drinking mycotoxins but if it's harmless and won't hurt anything, I'll just leave it alone.
Thanks
Title: Re: Mould - should I dump?
Post by: morticaixavier on November 19, 2012, 04:10:04 PM
It's PROBABLY harmless. I've gotten spots of mould before and was carefull when racking to avoid the spots. but I am not a microbiologist, M.D. or anything of the sort so BIG grain of salt
Title: Re: Mould - should I dump?
Post by: tschmidlin on November 19, 2012, 05:10:35 PM
What was the ABV and IBU of the beer?  Are you keeping air out well enough?
Title: Re: Mould - should I dump?
Post by: gmac on November 19, 2012, 06:40:58 PM
ABV was around 8.  IBU was low, probably around 20 - it was a saison.
As far as I can tell air is out.  Using a glass carboy and rubber stopper with rye in it.
I opened it once a couple months ago to add oak that was soaked in rye but that was a couple minutes max.  Otherwise it's been pretty much airtight.
Title: Re: Mould - should I dump?
Post by: redbeerman on November 19, 2012, 07:10:31 PM
ABV was around 8.  IBU was low, probably around 20 - it was a saison.
As far as I can tell air is out.  Using a glass carboy and rubber stopper with rye in it.
I opened it once a couple months ago to add oak that was soaked in rye but that was a couple minutes max.  Otherwise it's been pretty much airtight.

You could rack the beer out from under the mold.  I have done that before with great results.  Don't know how big your mold cake is though.  I had just a small amount that attached itself to a lacto pellicle in a Berliner Wiesse.
Title: Re: Mould - should I dump?
Post by: euge on November 19, 2012, 07:12:31 PM
I've heard recommendations of carefully siphoning out the beer from underneath the layer. Gently scrape a hole with something then pass the line through. Leave a goodly portion so you don't accidentally pull any of the nastiness up.

I'm wondering if the oak brought it in despite being soaked in rye.

Ooops beat me to it...
Title: Re: Mould - should I dump?
Post by: anje on November 19, 2012, 07:16:49 PM
I wouldn't serve it to anyone with a penicillin allergy, though.
Title: Re: Mould - should I dump?
Post by: Jimmy K on November 19, 2012, 07:35:04 PM
Using a glass carboy and rubber stopper with rye in it.
I opened it once a couple months ago to add oak that was soaked in rye but that was a couple minutes max. 

I'm probably being an idiot - but rye? I must be missing something because I'm picturing a stopper with stalks of rye sticking out of it. Probably not a good oxygen barrier.
Title: Re: Mould - should I dump?
Post by: gmac on November 19, 2012, 07:37:33 PM
Using a glass carboy and rubber stopper with rye in it.
I opened it once a couple months ago to add oak that was soaked in rye but that was a couple minutes max. 

I'm probably being an idiot - but rye? I must be missing something because I'm picturing a stopper with stalks of rye sticking out of it. Probably not a good oxygen barrier.

OK...Canadian Whisky.  We all call it rye because it's rye whisky.  I know I've asked for a rye and coke in the US before and been looked at like I'm an idiot by the bartender.  That's also how I learned not to ask for whisky and coke cause I ended up with Jack Daniels (yuck).  Crown Royal, Canadian Club, Gibson's Finest.  All rye whiskies.
I use cheap rye in my fermentation lock so that if it gets drawn in, no big deal.
Title: Re: Mould - should I dump?
Post by: redbeerman on November 19, 2012, 07:38:12 PM
Using a glass carboy and rubber stopper with rye in it.
I opened it once a couple months ago to add oak that was soaked in rye but that was a couple minutes max. 

I'm probably being an idiot - but rye? I must be missing something because I'm picturing a stopper with stalks of rye sticking out of it. Probably not a good oxygen barrier.

I think he means rye whiskey, Jimmy. ;)
Title: Re: Mould - should I dump?
Post by: nateo on November 19, 2012, 08:38:05 PM
Humans have a tremendous tolerance for mycotoxins. Along with being able to sweat a lot, that's one of our superpowers. Unlike its American cousin "mold," Canadian mould is known for being pleasant and inoffensive, if a bit bland.
Title: Re: Mould - should I dump?
Post by: redbeerman on November 19, 2012, 08:45:10 PM
Humans have a tremendous tolerance for mycotoxins. Along with being able to sweat a lot, that's one of our superpowers. Unlike its American cousin "mold," Canadian mould is known for being pleasant and inoffensive, if a bit bland.

That's just wrong. :o
Title: Re: Mould - should I dump?
Post by: nateo on November 19, 2012, 10:24:34 PM
That's just wrong. :o

Sorry, I couldn't resist the Canadian joke. But it's true that we can eat really nasty moldy stuff that would kill any other animal. It's also true that we can tolerate high heat for long periods that would kill any other land animal. If you're a hunter-gatherer in the Serengeti, those are really valuable traits to have.
Title: Re: Mould - should I dump?
Post by: corkybstewart on November 19, 2012, 10:33:06 PM
I brewed a Flanders red years ago and after sitting 6 months on 12 pounds of cherries it developed a gruesome green and white mold that came up the sides of the carboy to the airlock stopper.  I siphoned it into a clean carboy and let it sit a few more months, it never developed another pellicle or any mold.  I then racked it to a keg and enjoyed it for 3 years before it was finally gone.
Title: Re: Mould - should I dump?
Post by: tschmidlin on November 19, 2012, 10:35:50 PM
I'm really surprised you have mold growing on top of an 8% ABV beer.  I'd rack it too.

By the way, your bartender was an idiot.  We have rye here too, although ours actually has to contain more than half rye, unlike yours.
Title: Re: Mould - should I dump?
Post by: gmac on November 19, 2012, 10:52:38 PM
I'm really surprised you have mold growing on top of an 8% ABV beer.  I'd rack it too.

By the way, your bartender was an idiot.  We have rye here too, although ours actually has to contain more than half rye, unlike yours.

I have to bottle it soon anyway to move it so I think I'll just rack it off and bottle it in champagne bottles and call it good.   

I agree, the bartender was an idiot (but not the first one I've had).  I've had some excellent rye out of Iowa (wish I could remember the name - Templeton maybe?).  It was really nice though.  Friend of mine gets some every year cause I think it only comes in small amounts.
Title: Re: Mould - should I dump?
Post by: deepsouth on November 20, 2012, 03:56:37 AM
i've been looking for templeton rye forever.   you can't buy it in mississippi and i haven't found a place that sells it that can ship here.

sorry for the off topic post, but i've been dying to try templeton rye.
Title: Re: Mould - should I dump?
Post by: Joe Sr. on November 20, 2012, 04:07:34 PM
i've been looking for templeton rye forever.   you can't buy it in mississippi and i haven't found a place that sells it that can ship here.

sorry for the off topic post, but i've been dying to try templeton rye.

Staying off topic, but Templeton is good rye.  My favorite is Sazerac.  Rittenhouse is good stuff, too, and you don't have to pay the "small batch" price.  Great in a Manhattan.  Apparently rye has gotten popular enough that it's hard for the local retailers to keep it stocked.  At least it was so about two years ago.  I stocked up and haven't had to buy any recently.