Author Topic: New to brewing, have a question  (Read 657 times)

Offline scooter2374

  • Cellarman
  • **
  • Posts: 89
  • Highlands, NJ
    • View Profile
    • Scotty's Homebrew blog
New to brewing, have a question
« on: November 14, 2010, 04:17:16 PM »
Hi all, just made my first homebrew yesterday and have a question. Is it possible to overheat my malt extract? I left them in plastic cans in saucepans on high heat for awhile to make them more viscous.
AHA member since '10

Offline Wheat_Brewer

  • Assistant Brewer
  • ***
  • Posts: 236
  • Bad Bunny Brewing
    • View Profile
Re: New to brewing, have a question
« Reply #1 on: November 14, 2010, 04:20:20 PM »
I'm going to go out on a limb and say you'll be just fine. 

You didn't mention if there was any water in the pan to warm up the extract, if there was I would say unless you boiled it for hours you're fine, and even without water if there wasn't anything burned at the bottom you're still good. 

Welcome to you're new obsession!
Homebrewing isn't my obsession, it's my life calling, there's a difference.

AHA Lifetime Member

Offline scooter2374

  • Cellarman
  • **
  • Posts: 89
  • Highlands, NJ
    • View Profile
    • Scotty's Homebrew blog
Re: New to brewing, have a question
« Reply #2 on: November 14, 2010, 04:24:23 PM »
Thanks for the quick reply. Yeah there was water in the pans (used 2 to heat 4 tubs of malt) and the water got almost to a boil. I had read about not wanting to scorch the wort so I had assumed it was gonna be equally bad to scorch the malt, lol.
AHA member since '10

Offline corkybstewart

  • Senior Brewmaster
  • ******
  • Posts: 1332
    • View Profile
Re: New to brewing, have a question
« Reply #3 on: November 14, 2010, 04:35:07 PM »
If you don't get it good and hot it's a real pain to get it out of the cans.  It can't get more than 212F and isn't really in direct contact with a heat source.  The scorching you hear about is when you pour the extract into the kettle and then let it sit on the bottom without stirring it.  Once it's well mixed I don't think it can scorch.
I'd really just rather be brewing in sunny Carlsbad New Mexico

Offline scooter2374

  • Cellarman
  • **
  • Posts: 89
  • Highlands, NJ
    • View Profile
    • Scotty's Homebrew blog
Re: New to brewing, have a question
« Reply #4 on: November 14, 2010, 04:41:45 PM »
Thanks for the info. One last thing.... how long should it take for fermentation to begin? I pitched my yeast at 5pm yesterday and as of 2pm today I still had not seen bubbles emerging from my airlock, is it normal to take this long? The brew is a Belgian cherry ale if that matters.
AHA member since '10

Offline Wheat_Brewer

  • Assistant Brewer
  • ***
  • Posts: 236
  • Bad Bunny Brewing
    • View Profile
Re: New to brewing, have a question
« Reply #5 on: November 14, 2010, 04:51:45 PM »
It can take as few as a couple hours with a good starter, or it can take a few days before you see any activity in the air lock.  Give it another day and if you still don't see anything pop the lid and see if there's any activity.  You may need to re-pitch the yeast, but give it some time. 

Along the same lines, was the wort cool when you pitched the yeast?
Homebrewing isn't my obsession, it's my life calling, there's a difference.

AHA Lifetime Member

Offline scooter2374

  • Cellarman
  • **
  • Posts: 89
  • Highlands, NJ
    • View Profile
    • Scotty's Homebrew blog
Re: New to brewing, have a question
« Reply #6 on: November 14, 2010, 04:57:00 PM »
The wort was 85ish when I pitched in the yeast. Is that too high? The recipe that come with my kit said between 70-90
AHA member since '10

Offline Wheat_Brewer

  • Assistant Brewer
  • ***
  • Posts: 236
  • Bad Bunny Brewing
    • View Profile
Re: New to brewing, have a question
« Reply #7 on: November 14, 2010, 05:01:21 PM »
I'm sure that question will spark a string of debating!  For what it's worth I've read that the wort should be anywhere from 65-90 degrees...I go with the wort being around 70 for ptiching. 
Homebrewing isn't my obsession, it's my life calling, there's a difference.

AHA Lifetime Member

Offline corkybstewart

  • Senior Brewmaster
  • ******
  • Posts: 1332
    • View Profile
Re: New to brewing, have a question
« Reply #8 on: November 14, 2010, 05:44:37 PM »
That's a lot higher than you should itch yeast.  The problem with these yeast packs is that ideal temperature for yeast growth and reproduction is higher than the ideal temp for making beer.  High temps cause the yeast to make unwanted chemicals like esters and fusels.  These chemicals don't bother the yeast but they give off flavors to beer.  Now I go to great lengths to get my wort to under 60F before I pitch the yeast, but honestly when I started brewing room temp(72F) was normal.  I made beer, but the single thing I've done over the past 18 years is to get control of my pitching and fermentation temperatures.  I wish I had known about it when I started.
I'd really just rather be brewing in sunny Carlsbad New Mexico

Offline scooter2374

  • Cellarman
  • **
  • Posts: 89
  • Highlands, NJ
    • View Profile
    • Scotty's Homebrew blog
Re: New to brewing, have a question
« Reply #9 on: November 14, 2010, 06:36:18 PM »
So is this batch going to be a total bust corky? Or can I run to the shop and add more yeast to it?
AHA member since '10

Offline hokerer

  • I spend way too much time on the AHA forum
  • ********
  • Posts: 2639
  • Manassas, VA
    • View Profile
Re: New to brewing, have a question
« Reply #10 on: November 14, 2010, 07:46:01 PM »
So is this batch going to be a total bust corky? Or can I run to the shop and add more yeast to it?

Certainly not a total bust, just maybe not as good as it could have been.  It hasn't been 24 hours yet so give the yeast more time to get started and don't rush out to pitch more.  What you can do is to try and cool that fermentation down.  Get one of those kids toys tubs thingies (like a plastic half barrel), put the fermenter in it and add water (not so much that the fermenter floats).  Add frozen water bottles to the water to get the temp down (keep it in the 60's).

Even if you can't do that, it's not a total bust.  See how it turns out and learn from it.
Joe

Offline scooter2374

  • Cellarman
  • **
  • Posts: 89
  • Highlands, NJ
    • View Profile
    • Scotty's Homebrew blog
Re: New to brewing, have a question
« Reply #11 on: November 14, 2010, 08:11:06 PM »
Thanks for the advice hok. Here's to it turning out at least drinkable ;D
AHA member since '10

Offline corkybstewart

  • Senior Brewmaster
  • ******
  • Posts: 1332
    • View Profile
Re: New to brewing, have a question
« Reply #12 on: November 14, 2010, 09:18:10 PM »
You made beer, it'll be good.  Your next batch will be much better, and then you'll be hooked.  But do cool it down as soon as you can, that'll really help it turn out great.
I'd really just rather be brewing in sunny Carlsbad New Mexico