Author Topic: How NOT to Brew Beer  (Read 1379 times)

Offline dons

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How NOT to Brew Beer
« on: June 13, 2011, 11:29:22 AM »
For all the help y'all have given me over the past few months, I thought I would tell you about my friend's brewing experience yesterday.  Hopefully you'll get a chuckle or two out of it.  I probably will also in the (far) future.  These are excerpts from my, errr, his brew log:

Well, what can I say?  At this point this is looking like an experiment gone very, very awry. I wanted to try a “kit” beer so ordered this one from Northern Brewers.  Good ratings and called Dead Ringer.  After my day today, I toyed with re-naming this  Comedy of Errors IPA because of all the problems I had, but that would describe so MANY of my beers.  The problems follow:
1.  It took a week for the shipment to get to me.  So, the yeast was in about 100 deg F heat (or more) for a week.  Pretty much should spell death for yeast and I worried a lot about that, but I decided to go through with it anyway.  (and I usually worry about keeping the little things cool in my normal 90 minute drive from my brew store)
2.  As I removed the grain from the shipping box, I spilled it all over the kitchen floor.  My wife and I got “most” of it up – but left maybe ½ a pound (which landed in place we just didn't want to go).  Not to speak of how much crap from the floor got mixed in with the stuff I tossed back into the grain. 
3.  I made too much wort (didn’t have to, because the sugar stopped coming well before the 5 gallon mark).  So, I ended up with nearly 6 gallons of beer – after the boil.  I had to throw out a gallon – thereby ensuring a lesser OG reading (and alcohol and beer quality) than I should have ended up with if I had boiled it down or not started with as much as I did in the first place.
4.  When I put the pot into the ice bath on the deck, it overflowed a bunch of ice cubes.  Rather than throw the cubes back into the ice bath, I threw the first few handfuls into the wort.  Along with bugs, twigs and whatall else they picked up from the deck floor.
5.  As we were outside cooling the wort, it started raining – for the first time in a month!!  Sigh.  Shielded it the best we could while waiting for the chiller to do its thing.
6.  As I pitched the yeast starter, the carboy was too full and at least half of the yeast ended up on the kitchen floor.  No, I didn’t sponge it up and put it in the wort – as you might think I would do given the above.

As I watch the bubbles coming up from the wort 20 hours later, I notice how “muddy” it looks.  Don’t suppose this would be because of all the – ummmm – adjunct material I added along the way?
I've finally figured out my problem.  I have Cenosillicaphobia.

Offline morticaixavier

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Re: How NOT to Brew Beer
« Reply #1 on: June 13, 2011, 11:32:28 AM »
watch, this will be the best beer you ever brewed and you will be trhowing ingredients all over your floor for years trying to duplicate it.
"Creativity is the residue of wasted time"
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"errors are [...] the portals of discovery"
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Offline euge

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Re: How NOT to Brew Beer
« Reply #2 on: June 13, 2011, 11:54:35 AM »
A comedy of errors? Been there. Done that.

Usually why many of us limit our consumption while brewing. Or take their sweet time while doing it. Must be why my brew days are 7-12 hours long. ::)

Don't worry it'll be fine. Probably.
The first principle is that you must not fool yourself, and you are the easiest person to fool. -Richard P. Feynman

Offline tomsawyer

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Re: How NOT to Brew Beer
« Reply #3 on: June 13, 2011, 12:05:03 PM »
Just wait, it ain't over.  If the carboy is plumb full before the yeast takes off its going to ooze out plenty of gooey stuff onto your floor.

But look at the bright side, the yeast is alive.  Unless a wild strain from the deck took off.

PS the muddy look is normal, its yeast.  And that kit is a Two Hearted Ale clone.  Maybe you should call this one Ten Thumbs Ale.
Lennie
Hannibal, MO

Offline The Professor

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Re: How NOT to Brew Beer
« Reply #4 on: June 13, 2011, 04:59:48 PM »
watch, this will be the best beer you ever brewed and you will be trhowing ingredients all over your floor for years trying to duplicate it.


LOL.  Absolutely right.
I've had a number of batches where I thought I had really frucked something up on brew day (the mishaps are many and varied),  and in the end the brews turned out great. 
And wouldn't you know it,  always pretty much unrepeatable.   :D

So, at least a couple of times a year I have a brew that's labeled in my logbook as "Disastrous 'Lil Darlin' #___"
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Offline Wheat_Brewer

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Re: How NOT to Brew Beer
« Reply #5 on: June 13, 2011, 07:02:37 PM »
"6.  As I pitched the yeast starter, the carboy was too full and at least half of the yeast ended up on the kitchen floor.  No, I didn’t sponge it up and put it in the wort – as you might think I would do given the above."

Actually I expected you to wet vac it, realize you hadn't cleaned the dirt out from for about a good year, but still pitch it.   :P
Homebrewing isn't my obsession, it's my life calling, there's a difference.

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Offline scooter2374

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Re: How NOT to Brew Beer
« Reply #6 on: June 13, 2011, 07:11:40 PM »
Sounds like quite the day. I hope it turns out to be a great beer.
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Offline brewmonk

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Re: How NOT to Brew Beer
« Reply #7 on: June 15, 2011, 06:42:46 AM »
watch, this will be the best beer you ever brewed and you will be trhowing ingredients all over your floor for years trying to duplicate it.

So true.
My best beer so far (out of three) has been one I threw together as a total shot in the dark of ingredients, boiled my hops a bit longer than I intended, had sloppy sanitization, squeezed the hell out of the grain bag after steeping (not realizing the possibility of tannin extraction at the time) and then I misread the yeast package and fermented it probably 10F warmer than I should have for the first three days.

Now people want me to make another batch!  :D
Br. Francis
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Offline OrangeSnow

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Re: How NOT to Brew Beer
« Reply #8 on: June 16, 2011, 06:41:05 PM »
Next time "your friend" is brewing, please video tape it.  You can't keep that entertainment to yourself!

Offline afacini

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Re: How NOT to Brew Beer
« Reply #9 on: June 17, 2011, 09:06:58 AM »
Haha agreed about the "your friend" sentiment! ;)

I hear you though on beersasters. I once made a double IPA we ended up naming India Fail Ale because of the following:
  • -Set the stovetop on fire (boilover out of control + electric element)
  • -Burnt sinuses owing to concentrated hop oils (and gasses) in our fermenter when we went to check the smell
  • -Alarmed about our first hop oil slick at racking, we left to look it up only to return and find the siphon hose floated up and out of the bucket, spilling no less than 2 gallons of beer on the floor. The carpeted, university-owned floor that we weren't supposed to be brewing on anyway.
  • -Newbie calculations in the beginning led to a beer that was 10.5%, which of course was not our goal.
http://dormbrew.wordpress.com/2010/03/23/india-fail-ale/

All in all, we loved it more for the hi-jinx. Good luck with yours!

Offline andylovesburritos

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Re: How NOT to Brew Beer
« Reply #10 on: June 23, 2011, 08:06:48 AM »
first pale ale i made, i went to siphon into the secondary via my mouth and a hose, once i got beer running through the hose i ended up sucking in too much and got some in my mouth. well im not one to waste and decided that spitting it back in the secondary seemed like a pretty good idea, well it turned out to be the best pale i've ever made

Offline oscarvan

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Re: How NOT to Brew Beer
« Reply #11 on: June 24, 2011, 04:55:25 AM »
I second the "keep the consumption down" sentiment. Multitasking is a lot easier that way.

Next time you have too much wort, boil it down to where it should be and THEN add the first hops and start the 60 minute clock.
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I brew WITH style..... not necessarily TO style.....