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Bax

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Hey all, I'm ready to do my 3rd brew in a week or so, and I'm just hoping to get some clarification.

My first ever brew was straight kit, fermented in the garage at around 30 degrees. It was okay considering, I think I was just more excited that I'd made beer. Since the second batch, I can no longer stand the first batch - The few remaining bottles got poured.

I learnt that temperature control was a big thing.

My second batch was a Coopers Australian Ale, with US05 I believe. Fermented at 18 degrees, syphoned into a secondary, and then bulk primed before bottling. Quite enjoyable, but still not good enough.

There was still a lot of sediment, from what I can only imagine is the yeasts waste after consuming bottling sugars. And the mouthfeel was not as crisp and clean as I would have liked. Taste wise, there was a slight tang that doesn't seem like it's meant to be there. Do different sugars produce different amounts of sediment?

So, I come here asking what I can do for a third brew. Do I need to go into partials to remove the things I mentioned above? Has anybody got a good recipe for me to try. This third batch I'd like to Hop as well.

Short version: Kit brewer wants a cleaner, crisper beer with less sediment.
 

wbosher

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How long did you leave it in the fermenter for? What do you call a lot of sediment, a few mm? How long did you leave it in the bottles?

Two to three weeks should be enough for most of the sedimant to settle in the fermenter, leaving less in the bottles, but enough to carbonate.
 

carniebrew

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What were the exact ingredients Bax? i.e. what else did you add to the fermenter other than the can? And how many litres did you top it up to? Also, where are you and what water did you use, tap/tank/bottled?

You've certainly done the right thing in using US-05 yeast fermented at 18 degrees, and if your Coopers Aussie Pale Ale can was well within its use by date it should have worked out really well. I have a mate Adam who brews that kit all the time and it comes out great. He uses a "brew enhancer" mix with it, basically a combination of light dried malt, dextrose and maltodextrin.
 

wbosher

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carniebrew said:
What were the exact ingredients Bax? i.e. what else did you add to the fermenter other than the can? And how many litres did you top it up to? Also, where are you and what water did you use, tap/tank/bottled?

You've certainly done the right thing in using US-05 yeast fermented at 18 degrees, and if your Coopers Aussie Pale Ale can was well within its use by date it should have worked out really well. I have a mate Adam who brews that kit all the time and it comes out great. He uses a "brew enhancer" mix with it, basically a combination of light dried malt, dextrose and maltodextrin.
What he said...I hate it when my boss sneaks up on me while I'm in the middle of asking some questions. Anyone would think I'm being paid to actually work here. :lol:
 

Bax

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Testing my memory now, it's all at home on the PC.

But from memory it was in the fermentor for 2 weeks. I remember it had reached FG, but I left it for a fair bit longer because it still had a very solid krausen, and I was waiting for it to drop. It never dropped, so I imagine some sediment could have come across from that - I couldn't quite find out what to do with the head, whether I'm meant to scoop it off or what.

It's been in the bottle now for 3 weeks I believe. Today could quite possibly be the fourth week. I used caster sugar for bottling, as I didn't have anything else on me at the time.

As for the level of sediment, yeah probably only a few mm. It looked quite clear, but any disturbance was enough to get it cloudy, would I be right in saying that the sediment causes the slimy mouthfeel?

Actual ingredients were the can of extract, local hbs's 'muscle pack' which when I asked they couldn't tell me exactly what was in it, but it looked like a standard dextrose/dry malt/ maltodextrin combination (I've already decided I'll be doing these additions on my own accord next time, instead of relying on premade packs) Topped up to 23L with Tap water that I'd had sitting in my secondary for a few days with the lid off. I've got the option of tank water from my father in law. Now that we've had a lot of rain he shouldn't have a problem with me taking some of that.
 

wbosher

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Everything sounded pretty normal to me until the bit where you say "Topped up to 23L with Tap water that I'd had sitting in my secondary for a few days with the lid off." Not sure, but it sound to me like you used water that had just been sitting there exposed to pretty much anything.
 

wbosher

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In regards to the krausen, that is pretty normal for us-05. Sometimes it drops, sometimes it doesn't. I'll usually give the fermenter a gentle tap around the sides if still there in a couple of weeks, that usually causes it to drop out, then leave another week. Otherwise you can just leave it there while bottling/racking.

The sediment in the bottle sounds pretty normal to me, a few mm is about right. Do you decant it into another vessel before pouring into a glass?
 

carniebrew

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That water issue does sound curious...why did you have it sitting in an FV for a couple of days with the lid off? Doesn't sound like it would have been all that fresh.

Tank water can be good, as long as you know it's clean.

Also don't worry about the krausen, don't bother trying to remove it or anything....if all is well with your brew, the krausen is not important. It won't impart any unwanted flavours to your beer.

My main culprit at the moment is your water. You've made two brews...the first fermented far too high, sure, but the 2nd you have ALL the right ingredients and process to make really good beer. Don't let the sediment bother you...with a kit can and brew enhancer the only sediment you should be seeing is yeast, and again with US-05 that shouldn't be affecting your taste much at all. And after having a stubby sitting in the fridge for a few hours it should be all packed down the bottom of the bottle. Try pouring it carefully and all in one go into a glass, leaving the last couple of mm of beer in the bottle with the yeast sediment. Your beer will still be cloudy, it's just how home brew is (without crash chilling or finings). But no way should the sediment be causing "slick mouthfeel" or any other unwanted flavours. Again i'm suss on the water here.
 

NewtownClown

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many people leave their water out overnight for the removal of chloride (chlorine?)
 

Bax

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Cheers guys.

The water may have only spent one night in the other fermenter prior to being chilled. I read somewhere that it helps chlorine evaporate, also read somewhere else that the chlorine that's in drinking water doesn't evap. It was mainly just me experimenting with different things.

The first batch was straight water from the tap. Chilled. And it had a slippery mouth feel as well.

I don't decant into another vessel prior to going into the glass. I do pour gently into a glass though.

How can I get a cleaner crisper mouth feel?
 

wbosher

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NewtownClown said:
many people leave their water out overnight for the removal of chloride (chlorine?)
Uncovered???
 

jaypes

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wbosher said:
Uncovered???
Uncovered or covered it does not matter as the chloramines will be converted to gas. You get a better conversion with UV light (sunlight)
 

bum

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Bax said:
Taste wise, there was a slight tang that doesn't seem like it's meant to be there.
Kit twang. With a bit of experience and a lot of skill you can cover this up but in my experience as the beer fades it comes back. Some brewers will tell you that kit twang doesn't exist. I will tell you that these lucky bastards can't taste kit twang.

Going to full extract or partials (not based on pre-hopped kits) or AG will get rid of the twang.

What's the issue with the sediment? There's going to be sediment no matter what and you're going to need to be careful with the pour no matter what. Learn to accept it rather than try to remove it.
 

carniebrew

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Bax said:
How can I get a cleaner crisper mouth feel?
What was the final gravity on your brews? Cleaner/crisper mouthfeel could be your brew is not "dry" enough for you, e.g. the use of maltodextrin in those brew enhancers increases the final gravity by adding unfermentable sugars to the wort. But if your FG is anywhere around 1010 that's not going to be the issue.
 

jaypes

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dropping the temp after fermentation will compact a lot of the sediment
 

wbosher

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jaypes said:
Uncovered or covered it does not matter as the chloramines will be converted to gas. You get a better conversion with UV light (sunlight)
I was think more along the lines of nasties getting in the water, as it is not boiled before putting into the fermenbter.
 

jaypes

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True, if you can drink it there should be no probs
 

carniebrew

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bum said:
Kit twang. With a bit of experience and a lot of skill you can cover this up but in my experience as the beer fades it comes back. Some brewers will tell you that kit twang doesn't exist. I will tell you that these lucky bastards can't taste kit twang.

Going to full extract or partials (not based on pre-hopped kits) or AG will get rid of the twang.
I'm one of those brewers. Nobody who has ever consumed my beers, all of which have been made with either kits or unhopped extract, have ever tasted a "twang". I guess we're all lucky bastards!

One of the simplest brews I ever made, back when I was starting out, was an "Irish Ale" from Coopers website....a can of Coopers Draught, brew enhancer 1 (dextrose/maltodextrin) and 300gm golden syrup, with the kit yeast...fermented in my cupboard at around 22 degrees. A large group of us sat down and drank it back to back with Kilkenny from cans. Not surprisingly (now anyway) it was absolutely nothing like Kilkenny....and all of my mates bizarrely preferred the homebrew (I don't think Kilkenny is great out of a can anyway)....and not a 'twang' to be found.

Since then I've made a heap of full extract beer using steeped grain and 60 minute boils, and while the brews are more complex and flavoursome, I (and no-one else for that matter) have ever said "oh great at least the twang has gone". And it's not for want of trying, we've discussed "that homebrew taste" while drinking these brews and simply can't find it. There's a bunch of theories on it, such as old/out of date cans, use of table sugar in the wort (one mate's old man does this and my mate can't stand his home brew), and temperature variations during fermentation.

It's a mythical beast, and I actually look forward to tasting "extract twang" one day so I can work out what the hell people are talking about. Just hopefully not in one of my brews.
 

goomboogo

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jaypes said:
Uncovered or covered it does not matter as the chloramines will be converted to gas. You get a better conversion with UV light (sunlight)
I was under the impression this won't work very well for chloramine. Chlorine may be removed this way but chloramine would require filtering or treatment with something like campden tablets or an equivalent.
 

Bax

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bum said:
Kit twang. With a bit of experience and a lot of skill you can cover this up but in my experience as the beer fades it comes back. Some brewers will tell you that kit twang doesn't exist. I will tell you that these lucky bastards can't taste kit twang.

Going to full extract or partials (not based on pre-hopped kits) or AG will get rid of the twang.

What's the issue with the sediment? There's going to be sediment no matter what and you're going to need to be careful with the pour no matter what. Learn to accept it rather than try to remove it.
No issue at all with sediment, so long as it does not affect taste or mouthfeel in any way. I honestly don't even mind if it ends up in my pour. Again, so long as it has no affect on taste or mouthfeel.

carniebrew said:
What was the final gravity on your brews? Cleaner/crisper mouthfeel could be your brew is not "dry" enough for you, e.g. the use of maltodextrin in those brew enhancers increases the final gravity by adding unfermentable sugars to the wort. But if your FG is anywhere around 1010 that's not going to be the issue.
FG came in at 1012. I've come home for lunch and I've got my spreadsheet with me now, It's been bottled for just over 4 weeks. And was in the fermenter for only 12 days. Not quite 2 weeks.

jaypes said:
dropping the temp after fermentation will compact a lot of the sediment
Down to what kind of temperature are we talking, 5 degrees? It's an old fridge so it would take a while to get there, but I could definitely do that if it's going to compact things a bit more.

I've read a little bit about kit twang, and it could very well be real. Until I get enough time and confidence to move onto a partial I guess I'll have to deal with it. Taste wise though it's slightly lacking, having a coopers pale ale fresh out of a stubby and having my kit of coopers australian pale ale, it was close - but where it lacked was mouthfeel and crispness. The coopers also had a nuttiness too it, and along with not having a twang, the coopers was obviously much more refined.

I'm not expecting great things from my brewing. But I would like to improve whenever possible.
 

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