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Njaim

Attempt #2: Weissbier

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My first attempt at brewing left a lot to be desired. The American Lager fame out horrendous, though I have been letting a few bottles age out of curiosity, and the last one I tasted was slightly better than I remember, but still seems off.

 

My second batch I controlled the temperature much better during fermentation, was extra clean. I used a standard Weissbier refill and boiled 1 ounce of Cascade hops for 5 minutes before adding the HME to make the wort, hoping for a slight citrusy touch from the hops (they were given to me, didn't want to waste them). Bottle conditioned for 4 weeks, and just tried my first bottle. It's drinkable, has a slight molasses smell, and a little bit of sourness to it. Not flavored that much like a wheat. Is that sourness normal? Did something sneak into my brew despite my extreme attempts at sanitation. Will it condition out more?

 

Thing is I'm a fan of sours, lambics, gosse. Even recently returned from a trip to Europe where I tried some great beers in Belgium. Doesn't stack to those flavors at all, but I'm not particularly put off by a bit of sour.

 

I'll let it age awhile more before trying another bottle. Time will tell.

 

I wonder though if something did sneak in, does that mean my LBK might be difficult to use for standard recipes now? I read that when you brew sours intentionally, it's best to not reuse the gear for standard recipes?

 

Either way. At least it's drinkable this time. Next up is a Long Play IPA, and I plan to do it straight with no additions.

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dont boil hme. you drive off everything mr beer worked to put into it like hop essence.

 

if you are doing a hop boil, you need some dme or one of the mr beer LME (unhopped) pouches to boil with the hops.   if you just boiled hops and water you made nothing more than hop tea.  i tried it once. epic fail.  hops need malt in a boil to do their magic.

 

sour and tart are often used interchangeably. wheat beers are naturally tart to a degree. my first impression of wheat was ick...sour.  i grew to love them.

 

if you are deliberately making a sour and using something like brett c , then yes.... that fermenter will need to be used for nothing but sours usually.  brett is a hardy yeast and will find any scratches or nicks to hide it so ive read.

 

it is doubtful that you had a wort infection. i think you would know.  lacto bacillus makes great snotty filmy bubbles that eventually form a pellicle.  acetobacter would turn your beer into vinegar.  brett also makes a pellicle.   mashani ( a former member here ) reported that he has colonies of brett in his AC ducts. just about every other beer ends up a sour for him , which he liked so ....    if you just boiled hops in water then dumped in the hme, that's probably impacting the flavor negatively. if you boiled the hme, that could have some negative flavor impact too.

 

next weiss, try boiling less hops like a .25 oz  with one pouch of lme golden from mr beer. flame out and remove from heat. add hme and stir in to mix. if you want to dry hop for aroma, put hops in a hop sock on the last week of fermentation. add the sanitized hop sock of hops to the lbk.   if you want to get better extraction make sure the hop sock sinks. you can do this by sanitizing a heaviy glass shotglass and adding that to the hop sock with the hops to weigh it down. some use glass marbles that they sanitize.

 

 

the only molasses smells i ever got in beer were with us04 when i used brown sugar in the beer. the yeast eats the sucrose and leaves behind the molasses. i ended up with a licorice stout.

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I didn't boil the HME. I knew that much, and probably should have done the 5 minutes of research about not boiling hops on their own. I did simply create hop tea and add HME once it cooled. Looks like I learned by experimenting because my curiosity and go for it attitude got the best of me.

 

Luckily, it's not THAT horrible (though I'm not eager to share it with anyone), as I like strong flavors, but hop tea infused weissbier wasn't really the goal. Haha! Definitely would have been better without it, I'm sure. I'm curious to see if it will change much with more conditioning time, but I have my doubts.

 

I suppose the sour/tart is from the hop tea. I think you're right that it wasn't infected, as there wasn't anything to suggest that is the case. I actually think it probably would have come out perfectly after all my close monitoring of temperature and cleanliness had I just went straight HME like everyone always suggests you do for the first few batches. Again, as usual, my curiosity got the better of me.

 

I have a Long Play IPA HME that came with one of my LBK kits, so I'll just do that one straight or dry hop at the end of fermentation as you've suggested. From there, I'm planning a batch of mead at the same time, but will probably not use one of my two LBKs for that. I am very interested in starting another weiss with your suggestions here, as I tend to like wheats.

 

I'm two batches in and both went south somewhere, but I'm not discouraged!


Thanks so much for your insight!

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8 hours ago, Njaim said:

I'm two batches in and both went south somewhere, but I'm not discouraged!

 

Njaim,

 

Glad to see you are not discouraged by a couple of bad batches..  The fallout rate for new brewers is very high.

 

OK, now for some more advice.  You said yourself that your first two batches "went south somewhere".  The first batch probably was the lack of temperature control and the second was probably how the hops were added.  In order to really improve your brewing, you need to follow some simple guidelines.

  • pick a beer that you won't mind drinking a bunch of and make a batch of it. 
  • Follow all of the directions to the letter
  • When it is ready try it and see how it turned out
  • Note the flaws and either through research or forum advice, understand what went wrong.
  • Brew the same beer again
  • Only change what you did wrong (ie... Temperature to high)
  • Note your process in detail. 
  • Follow these last 4 steps and after several batches following "your" process you should be making good beer.
  • Now and only now should you experiment with hop boils, dry hoping and other changes.

Remember, brewing is all about processes, there are no shortcuts. 

 

Dawg

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On Friday, March 16, 2018 at 7:44 AM, BDawg62 said:

Njaim,

 

Glad to see you are not discouraged by a couple of bad batches..  The fallout rate for new brewers is very high.

 

OK, now for some more advice.  You said yourself that your first two batches "went south somewhere".  The first batch probably was the lack of temperature control and the second was probably how the hops were added.  In order to really improve your brewing, you need to follow some simple guidelines.

  • pick a beer that you won't mind drinking a bunch of and make a batch of it. 
  • Follow all of the directions to the letter
  • When it is ready try it and see how it turned out
  • Note the flaws and either through research or forum advice, understand what went wrong.
  • Brew the same beer again
  • Only change what you did wrong (ie... Temperature to high)
  • Note your process in detail. 
  • Follow these last 4 steps and after several batches following "your" process you should be making good beer.
  • Now and only now should you experiment with hop boils, dry hoping and other changes.

Remember, brewing is all about processes, there are no shortcuts. 

 

Dawg

Patience BDawg. Don't forget patience. Too many try to rush through the process. Too many try to skip steps in learning the process. 

(editors note: dkristof1007 is trying to emulate RickBeer and simultaneously poke the bear)

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