On Father's Day my wife and I were wandering around town in the nice Spring weather, and wound up for a time in our local kitchen gadget store. They sell beer kits in there, and I overheard a woman telling the shop owner that since she and her husband moved to town, he's made two batches of beer that were so bad they had to pour them down the sink. To make a short story long, I jumped in to say that I've been brewing with our local tap water since moving to town almost 11 years ago, and I've never had a problem. Ditto for several friends of mine who are homebrewers in the area. Told her to have her husband get in touch with me and we'd see if we could figure out the problem.
This prompted me to think, though, that in the 18 or so years that I've been brewing, I've never made a batch I didn't drink. Sure I've made some that I didn't absolutely love. Some that was too watery or otherwise didn't have the best mouthfeel. Occasional batches that didn't taste exactly like I expected. And obviously some recipes that I simply didn't much care for.
The worst batch I can remember was in 2003. It had a noticeable (to me, at least) funky finish. It is by far the worst batch I ever made, but it was still drinkable. In fact, I had one friend at the time who told me it was one of his favorite of my brews that he'd tasted up to that point, so what I perceived as a fault may very well have been a matter of opinion.
To my knowledge, none of my homebrewing friends have ever had a real catastrophe, either. An explosive bottle here and there, of course, and like me, a few batches that didn't make it onto the favorites list. But I don't personally know of anyone who's dumped a batch.
How 'bout y'all? What's your worst batch?