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I have an ongoing infection in my beer.
Has anyone ever encountered a fermentation like the pictures attached? Over active fermentation, yeast coming out through airlock, viscous bubbles resulting in a bitter, long lasting, aftertaste?
This has happened in 3 of my last 4 brews.
I have made about 55 AG beers and not encountered it before. Sanitation with Star San, this is the third different fermentor I have tried.
All three brews have been low colour predominantly Gladfields Pils/Pale Ale to make a Cream Ale, 75 minute boil, OG 1.046-1.048. Measured OG pH in last beer and it was high at 6.0. Pitched approx. 20g US05 (two new packs), rehydrated at 23 degrees into 24L.
Fermenting at 17 degrees to get a clean flavour (haa!), fermentation begins fine then on day three the krausen begins to rise and by day six I have what you see in the picture.
Not looking forward to another 6 hour brew day to then unceremoniously (and angrily) dump it.
looks like a baking yeast might ? time for a new source of yeast?
That's a lot of yeast to pitch for a beer of that gravity, could the off flavours and overactive krausen be a result of over pitching?
I've pitching at this level for a while with great results and it is in line with recommendations to 'mitigate infection'. See here.
It looks like you have eliminated the fermenter (maybe). Hoses, utensils, environment. Everything from the time you start cooling could be a potential source of infection. When are you detecting the bitter aftertaste?
Bought new hoses over the weekend, just need to build myself up to attempting another brew.
Aftertaste becomes apparent after about 4-5 days in fermenter. Kegged the first beer that fermented like this and held at 2degrees for a couple of weeks, made no change to aftertaste.
Fair enough, just thought I'd put it out there.
When compared to mrmalty yeast calc it appears the brewersfriend calc is assuming around 50% viability.
Trying to go through a process of elimination and had disregarded yeast qty as it has been a successful pitch rate in the past.
i often use 2 x dry yeast never had this happen, my infections tend to make beers belgium....
I use a stainless racking can and turf the plastic hose every 2 weeks or so now
Always worth checking the innards of your kettle outlet valve (more especially so if you chill in kettle) the voids surrounding the ball itself are a prime spot for nasty buildups which can be a factor in downstream infections where everything else seems to be in order.
kettle sight glass...
Do you know any other brewers in your neighborhood you could ask if they are experiencing similar problems? I read a blog a while back about an Aussie guy who reckoned their was some nasty wild yeast in his area and he had replaced heaps of his gear but kept getting the same problem. Your never going to eliminate all contact with the air home brewing so its possible that its an airborne contaminant. When a bret infection gets into a winery its a huge problem and almost impossible to get rid of. I think this is worst case scenario and not very likely.
You could try soaking your fermenter in a (un scented) budget bleach solution, take the taps, grommets etc apart and soak them too, give the tap threads etc a good scrub with an old tooth brush and some of the bleach solution then rinse and star san, over kill on the sanitization just to be sure. Then brew the cheapest kit and kilo available just to see if you have the same problem. Doesn't matter if its horrible and you tip it down the drain, it costs bugger all and consumes very little time and will either be infected or more likely show that the infection is not from the air and give you the confidence to all grain again after pulling apart and sanitising some more of your gear.
I reckon a massive bleach blast is the only way to go... just not looking forward to it.
Like your idea on the kit experiment. That'll save me some hours at least.