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General Category => Yeast and Fermentation => Topic started by: enso on April 17, 2010, 08:17:35 PM

Title: Gack! Fuzzy starter!
Post by: enso on April 17, 2010, 08:17:35 PM
So I have been trying to brew some saisons for a couple of weeks (well longer actually) and made a starter a week and a half ago.  I actually ended up splitting it and making two starters.  One on a stirplate the other next to it.

I am mashing right now.  I just looked at the one on the stir plate.  I had turned the stir plate off 2 days ago.  It was getting fuzzy, maybe a pellicle? on top.

I poured off the wort on both and added some fresh starter wort.  I am still going to pitch it.  Just curious what was going on?
Title: Re: Gack! Fuzzy starter!
Post by: Matt B on April 18, 2010, 12:58:06 AM
Could be a small krausen?

I would give it a good whiff and pour a bit off to taste. It'll taste like rear end, but it should taste like a yeast's rear end. If it doesn't smell like yeast and doesn't taste yeasty or has more of a 'bite' to it, then toss it, chill your wort as cold as you can and if you've got a fridge for fermentation, get it colder in there, and run out and grab a new vial and pitch it, if your sanitation is good, it should be fine till tomorrow. I would hate to see your Saison turn into a bad rendition of a lambic.

My experience is that if it doesn't look like foamy krausen but more of a silky set of bubbles or skin, it's bacteria.


Title: Re: Gack! Fuzzy starter!
Post by: Hokerer on April 18, 2010, 02:00:09 AM
Agreed.  Most likely just a small krausen.  I've even gone so far as to, a few hours after turning off the stir plate, come back to a starter flask in full blowoff mode.
Title: Re: Gack! Fuzzy starter!
Post by: enso on April 18, 2010, 01:39:40 PM
No, not krauesen.  It was certainly another form of life.  Webby looking.

It was a huge pitch of yeast.  So, I am hoping for the best.  I am not going to freak about it.  It did not smell funky.  Well, it did, but in a Belgian saison kind of funky.  I did not think to taste the wort before dumping it.

I guess I was just wondering what other form of life had begun to grow.
Title: Re: Gack! Fuzzy starter!
Post by: Thirsty_Monk on April 18, 2010, 04:08:01 PM
If it is fuzzy ot could be mold.
Title: Re: Gack! Fuzzy starter!
Post by: enso on April 18, 2010, 06:50:45 PM
If it is fuzzy ot could be mold.

That is kind of what I thought.  It had only just started to be recognizable as something growing.

Saisons are chugging away nicely anyways.  Smell awesome!  I love sniffing the airlock!   ;D