Hello! I make wines and meads with a success, but trying to make some drinkable pilsner beers now and struggling a bit.
I am no expert and my logic is simple here - if the process works for wines, then it should work for anything - including beers.
I sanitize bucket and tools with potassium pyrosulfite solution.
- I use universal wine yeast (with killer factor), which can ferment in 15-35 celsius degrees (59-95 fahrenheit) - I used this because I can't control temperature in almost any way (I suspect this as one of the reasons of bad taste - bad still... wines are good)
- wort and hops boiled for an hour as normal, tasting good, cooled down immediately to about 25C deegres (77F), trying not spoil it, I use termometer constantly, but sanitize it anytime I sink it down to the wort of course
- flushed the chilled wort it into sanitized bucket, added yeast (amount was lower limit of suggested per volume)
The bucket I use have a bubbler and a tap.
For first few days smelled nice from the bubbler, though later the smell went to less pleasant.
Since I have a tap I taste it regularly (as I do with my wines) to check if it's ok.
I stopped noticing bubbling after about one week, about this time it tasted like raw waffles.. really, but it was fine- not unpleasant.. fine.
I waited another week as generally adviced.
After two weeks of fermentation I tasted it - it was not as good, just a little drinkable, can't really finish small glass of it.. sure it still needs at least two weeks of carbonation, but it has this bad smell and taste to it - it's not as bad like in really spoiled bevereges, bit still I can't drink it. Not sour, but ugh...
However, when I opened the bucket's lid the smell was really nice - like in a normal good craft beer, one good thing in all of this... strange,
maybe the good acumulated in air and the bad in beer, I don't know.
From all of beer odors I found when searching the most fitting is the rotten eggs or turtle-baby-farts odor (who invented this name... don't ask me)
From many articles I found on beer odors, I found a section telling
If your homebrew smells like eggs, it’s likely because of hydrogen sulfide gas. Hydrogen sulfide is a byproduct from active fermentation, often produced during the process of yeast processing the sulf from kilned malts and hops. This gas is often described as having the scent of rotten eggs or sulfur.https://hopstersbrew.com/identify-prevent-off-flavors-smells-in-homebrew-beer/
So I believe the challenge lies in fermenting malts and/with hops itself, and you have to be more rigourous than for other alcohol types,
so you don't produce hydrogen sulfide in your beers in huge amounts.
From what I've read here and everywhere else mistakes I made could be, from my perspective:
- Not using a proper brewing yeast for beers - but I can't believe you can't make drinkable thing out of any yeast, come on...
- Not enough yeast used initially - next time I'll use the upper limit of suggested amount per volume
- Not added any additional yeast nutrients - although the yeast package already contained nutrients itself, does it make sense to add even more?
- Too high temperature of fermentation.. - well.. Kveiks can ferment in 25C-40C range(77F-104F) - will it make it worse? I'll try them next time, since it's only thing I have left besides the wine yeast.
So next time I'll try to add more and Kveik yeast.. more nutrient, and chill the wort properly - although kveiks needs at least 25C(77F) - so probably not much of a change here.
Well, is there even more advise you could give me here, beyond the one I gave to myself?
How does it look like in your case?
Also, I've seen this topic on the forum suggesting using for instance some copper wire plus flushing beer to get rid of this smell...https://www.homebrewersassociation.org/forum/index.php?topic=9514.0
Seems like too much hassle, I would love to prevent it in the first place...
maybe fermenting with the wire inside and shaking it often... will it harm the beer?
Or maybe too much or not enough time in the bucket (2 weeks is like average time, isn't it)?