advice? possible infection?

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advice? possible infection?

Postby andrewmaixner » Tue Aug 30, 2016 9:45 am

First, for sanity, I may need someone to taste samples of two beers fermented with WLP090, as I have never used it before -- though it is supposed to be a neutral american ale flavor.

Something went wrong -- Either I somehow managed to infect a batch in a glass fermenter, and therefor the yeast harvested from it was also infected, or the yeast was bad to start, or amylase power can completely screw up a beer? I'm in danger of having to dump 15 gallons.

process:
I split a batch of IPA (had a mash temp problem, hence the high FGs) into two fermenters, one PET and one glass. Both were cleaned with a mark's keg cleaner / PBW, then hit with starsan.

The PET / WLP644 was kegged at ~1.015 at ~3 weeks, and was great.

The glass / WLP090, still measured 1.015 at 4 weeks. At this point I believe I tasted the gravity sample, and noticed nothing bad, just not "dry" enough. I then added a 1/4 tsp amylase to see if it would help, as an experiment.
A week later, there was no gravity change, so I kegged it, added a little gypsum for balance, primed with sugar, and sealed for 2 weeks. I don't recall if I tasted it at kegging/priming time, but I probably would have before adjusting the sulfite level.

The yeast cake at this point was harvested, and used to ferment 10 gallons of centennial blond in 2 6gal pails, at 65F. They finished at 1.010, but with a quite unpalatable flavor/aroma which I can only describe as "insufficiently conditioned / green beer". I kegged and cold crashed 5gal, and though it seems to have reduced the flavor, I am pretty darn sure that something is really wrong in it.

At this point, I threw the WLP090 IPA keg in the keezer, and sampled it. I believe that the same bad taste has appeared in it (possibly to a lesser extent), but would like a second opinion.

Open to comments / suggestions:
I believe that I can rule out the following:
-brew/boil hardware (triclamp, recirculated with PBW then water, disassembled and cleaned between batches, and recirculated with boiling water during boil).
-fermentation vessels (as each 5gal portion in this post used a different vessel)

On further investigation, it appears that the BSG Amylase from BIY is actually alpha, so it would do nothing at all to drop FG from too-high mash, as that was the alpha amylase active range. http://bsghandcraft.com/index.php/proce ... 15-oz.html says "Breaks 1,4 linkage in starch during liquefication, producing dextrin and a small amout of maltose. Leaves 1,6 links, therefore self-limiting" which is what alpha does.
That doesn't explain my problem, but it explains the failure to drop gravity.
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Re: advice? possible infection?

Postby andrewmaixner » Mon Sep 12, 2016 8:04 am

So I took this over to BIY a few days ago for a tasting of "great 644 IPA", "not-so-sure gen1 wlp090 IPA", and "wtf gen2 wlp090 blond".

We may have narrowed down and described the taste and aroma as slightly phenolic and reminiscent of smokey, which I believe can indicate a wild yeast contamination, especially was barely there in gen1, and was quite strong in gen2. Amazingly, Nikki didn't want me to dump them after the initial taste, so it wasn't objectively "bad".

I'm hoping to bring it to the meeting before I decide to dump the kegs, for one last opinion, if I can make it.


I brewed the same beer, same ingredients, same water supply, same equipment, same fermenters (well cleaned, of course!), with new packets of US-05 and S-04, and they exhibited no issues when I kegged them last night. I was also able to observe how S-04 flocks out much faster than US-05.
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Re: advice? possible infection?

Postby Matt F » Mon Sep 12, 2016 8:43 am

Unless you need the kegs for something. I would wait to dump to see what happens with some time.
Matt Franklin
Slappy Brewing North

On Tap:
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Saison
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FYF Triple IPA

Up Next:
Dry-hopped Kettle Sour
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Peanut Butter Cup Stout
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Re: advice? possible infection?

Postby andrewmaixner » Mon Sep 12, 2016 8:53 am

Matt F wrote:Unless you need the kegs for something. I would wait to dump to see what happens with some time.
Yes, I have two kegs of it, and kegged the second one with priming sugar for longer storage. I might dump (or give away if someone likes the contents) the one that's on tap now, and save the primed one for a half year to see how it turns out. It wasn't an expensive beer, only like $14 ingredients per.
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Re: advice? possible infection?

Postby UndeadFred » Mon Sep 12, 2016 12:20 pm

Actually, I agree with the ride it out if you have room. Worst case scenario is you end up with five gallons of something nasty, better ones are Malt Vinegar, or even aged out and nice "sour". You might be surprised. My one infected batch I had turned out pretty good two months later, but it was a mild infection. That was my first and last experiment with "no-chill". I did two batches that night and didn't want the extra work. The second got a very slight "film" on it but it actually turned out pretty good. It was a very slightly sour Irish red that was better than it sounds...
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Re: advice? possible infection?

Postby andrewmaixner » Mon Nov 14, 2016 5:53 pm

Aaaand, it seems that I may have just ended up with another double batch with this issue. F---. Both were done in hdpe which had been well cleaned and sanitized with starsan.

Trying to think of what equipment i user had only been cleaned and starsan-ed, but not boiled. I recirculate boiling wort through entire system while boiling my hops.
the hdpe fermenters have not been boiled, not my oxygen rod. I can not think of anything else that touches the wort pre fermentation.

Working on isolating commonalities before i just pitch every piece of plastic that i have. Boiled my stainless o2 rod, and will do the next couple batches in different fermenters also...
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Re: advice? possible infection?

Postby UndeadFred » Thu Nov 17, 2016 1:33 pm

You can actually boil water in HDPE. Or put it into an oven up to 220F. You could save those buckets still if you choose...
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Re: advice? possible infection?

Postby andrewmaixner » Thu Nov 17, 2016 5:39 pm

Ya, i didn't specify that but plan to do so
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