Author Topic: Very Sad Story  (Read 842 times)

Offline DCHIJARHEAD

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Very Sad Story
« on: June 22, 2014, 10:37:34 AM »
Last year for a work party I brewed 5 gals of an Irish Red Ale and it was a great hit. This year I was asked to brew the same brew for this year’s party.  I said okay.  So on Memorial Day, I brewed three 5 gal batches to fill a 15 gal keg.   The sad part of this story is during the transfer from primary to secondary, I noticed a hint of a sour taste, from all three brews.  Now I live in New Mexico and brew in a metal garage and it can get hot.  The brews all went well and I hit all my numbers.  But the following day was a work day and I had to have a blow off tube for a very active fermentation.   Normally one bottle will fit in my temperature controlled (old Fridge beer kegerator) but not three bottles.  Therefore, I left the brews in place (in garage) and it did get “hot” the next day was over 100 degrees, and even hotter in the metal garage.  Sign me up for AA now!    By the time I got off work, and when it no longer needed a blow tube,  I moved the brews indoors, however at this point I think the heat damage was already done.  I think the sour taste is based on this heat.  However, I will not count out infection, but it would have needed to infect all three equally. 
 
The party is at the end of July, and I have two other brews that will be completed by then, Just not Irish Red.  Painfully, two very nice Lagers as an alternative, which leaves me with 15 gals of sour Irish Red. 
 
The question:  Should I pitch this brew?  If the damage is heat and I can stand the aftertaste, is it safe to drink?  This brew is not prime time and I would not serve it as is.  Will aging help to mellow it out?  I can’t bring myself to pitching 15 gals without asking the experts first, but if it is an infection and unhealthy it must go.  Any recommendations are welcome.
« Last Edit: June 22, 2014, 10:42:45 AM by DCHIJARHEAD »

Offline GBRewed

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Re: Very Sad Story
« Reply #1 on: June 22, 2014, 11:50:05 AM »
Based on the info you provided I would say the taste/smell has more to do with high fermentation temps than the chance of infection.  Probably safe to drink, don't think it will hurt you, but you might not be able to enjoy the beer as much with those flavors.  I think high amount of fusel alcohol can possibly give you headaches?  Aging from my experience doesn't help so much with the high fusels and esters you get from high fermentation temps.  You could certainly follow through with finishing the brew and it might not be as bad as it is now, but I personally wouldn't get my hopes up.  Good luck!

Offline beerocd

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Re: Very Sad Story
« Reply #2 on: June 22, 2014, 11:59:50 AM »
To try for a save, I would put some active wort on top of it, keep it cool, check back in august. Failing that , whip out some lemonade and go 50/50 if you just cant part with it.
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Offline majorvices

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Re: Very Sad Story
« Reply #3 on: June 22, 2014, 12:13:02 PM »
Sad story indeed. Because proper fermentation temps are an essential key to making great beer. You simply can't make great beer without temp control. Period.
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Offline DCHIJARHEAD

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Re: Very Sad Story
« Reply #4 on: June 22, 2014, 12:38:23 PM »
Thanks guys.  I shutter to think of 30 gals of 50/50 lemonade-malt. I currently have this in the Keg and wanted to test taste it after a week.  Conclusion, it is difficult to drink, so if I cannot improve it, if not just a little it will be history.

Now Beerocd, when you say active wart. Do you mean use the sentiment after a transfer, which would mean, taking it out if the current Keg?  If so, I could put 5 gals at a time back into the Carboy, that I just transferred.  Do you think that would work?  If not, it is one step closer to being pitched, in Aug.   
« Last Edit: June 22, 2014, 02:04:54 PM by DCHIJARHEAD »

Offline majorvices

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Re: Very Sad Story
« Reply #5 on: June 22, 2014, 04:01:09 PM »
If you fermented the beer at 100 degrees it will be foul. There's no way to save of it. I'm getting a head ache right not just thinking about all those fusels. Your head might actually split open should you drink it. ;)

Dump it and start over and aim for a temp in the lower 60s next time.
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Offline DCHIJARHEAD

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Re: Very Sad Story
« Reply #6 on: June 22, 2014, 05:32:52 PM »
Thanks.  The brew is lost.  It may be a bad idea. but I may take five gals and bring it back to boil.   If I lose the sour taste, I will add malt and try again.  I will call it desperation.  I don't have much to lose except propane.  Either way it may still make it to compost.

Offline klickitat jim

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Re: Very Sad Story
« Reply #7 on: June 22, 2014, 05:36:27 PM »
Imagine yourself looking for a decent recipe. Ooh, here's one that calls for 5 gallons of really crappy beer, plus some DME. Mmmmmmmm. Sign me up.

Offline DCHIJARHEAD

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Re: Very Sad Story
« Reply #8 on: June 22, 2014, 05:45:03 PM »
Understand, but I have no one to please but myself.  You would be glad to know, I have several on tap that you may enjoy, it would not be this one, of course.
« Last Edit: June 22, 2014, 05:58:15 PM by DCHIJARHEAD »

Offline majorvices

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Re: Very Sad Story
« Reply #9 on: June 22, 2014, 06:00:02 PM »
You could add some sour blend and put it aside and see what you get. But even then, it's still not going to fix itself. It will most likely just be a bad sour beer.

I own a commercial brewery. I have had to dump 900 gallons of beer before. It sucks, trust me. But life is too short to be stuck drinking bad beer. Dump it, start Over fresh and always practice the most strict fermentation control.
« Last Edit: June 22, 2014, 06:03:18 PM by majorvices »
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Offline morticaixavier

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Re: Very Sad Story
« Reply #10 on: June 22, 2014, 07:19:12 PM »
if you are set on keeping it don't boil it. it's already damaged enough. If it's sour from infection it's not something that's going to hurt you in any way other than the aforementioned splitting headache. but really I think you should bottle a half dozen bottles and share it with people who want to know what bad beer tastes like.

Offline chumley

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Re: Very Sad Story
« Reply #11 on: June 23, 2014, 10:11:55 AM »
I think you should distill it and make a small quantity of Scotch whisky.  You could call it, "Aulde MacFusel".

Offline beerocd

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Re: Very Sad Story
« Reply #12 on: June 24, 2014, 04:08:59 AM »
I've read distilling hopped beer screws up your equipment (in that you need to scrub down every bit of it afterwards) and makes a pretty undrinkable drop anyway.
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Offline reverseapachemaster

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Re: Very Sad Story
« Reply #13 on: June 24, 2014, 07:13:03 AM »
I'd imagine the hop oils would cling to the interior of a still. I have no experience with distilling though.

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Re: Very Sad Story
« Reply #14 on: June 24, 2014, 07:16:09 AM »
I have heard rumors of a club that has one member that distills beer destined for the drain. Never had it so I can't say if it was any good or not.
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