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I Think I Kegged Too Early. Can It Be Fixed?

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acarey

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Hi All,

I think I kegged a beer too early and want to know if you guys think its screwed or how I can fix it.

The beer is the Rapid Creek Australian pale ale with added amarillo hops (infusion) from the Country Brewer. I sampled his in the shop and loved it.

My setup: Chest freezer with a collar, taps etc, fridge thermostat and STC1000 temp controller. I use it as a fermentation chamber and also a beer fridge (not at the same time).

I put it in the fermenter on the 4th of December. The wort was 27c when I put it in the keezer set @ 21.5c (probe taped to side of fermented under a Styrofoam block). I waited until the temp got to 21.5 and the temp control turned the keezer off before pitching the yeast.

.......Anyway, the wort temp kept dropping. This is because the keezer was at serving temperature immediately prior to brewing and the ambient temperature was still really cold. This caused the temp to keep going down. It settled at 17 before it started rising again. It took about 1.5 days to get back to 21.5.

Like the noob that I am, I didn't take an initial SG reading. I took readings every couple of days after as follows:
8th 1.02
10th 1.014
11th 1.012
12th 1.01

On the 12th I chilled it to 2 degrees.

I kegged and force carbed on the 15th. Tried it that night and thought it tasted a little sweet and watery and nowhere near as good as the one I sampled.

I then finished drinking my other keg (I only have 2 at this stage). Brought the fridge back to fermentation temp (properly this time) and put another Rapid Creek Australian pale ale in on the 16th.


In the week since, my questionable brew has been at room temperature. I suspect that fermentation hadn't finished and the beer will be awful on boxing day when I have some mate around for a poker game. I've been talking the brew up for a while and dont want to serve them crap.

I tried some more warm last night. It didn't seem to be much better (if any) although its hard for me to judge warm. I thought it might continue to ferment in the keg??

My questions are:

Do you think the beer is doomed?
Is there a way to save it if it is?
Should I just pin my hopes that the batch I put down on the 16th finishes in time (seems to be going much better)?

Thanks in advance.
 

mxd

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without knowing what the SG was and the yeast used it's had to say, but 1.010 seems fine to finish at, as you pulled the keg out for a week at room temp that would have got any more fermenting happening.

The flavours your tasting are more likely a result of your fermentation, how long did it take to get from 27 back to 21, dropping to 17 should be fine (depending on yeast).

I would put it in the keezer, leave it on gas and let it condition for the week and see how it is.

The other will/should be finished in time but will probably be a little green on boxing day.
 

acarey

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without knowing what the SG was and the yeast used it's had to say, but 1.010 seems fine to finish at, as you pulled the keg out for a week at room temp that would have got any more fermenting happening.

The flavours your tasting are more likely a result of your fermentation, how long did it take to get from 27 back to 21, dropping to 17 should be fine (depending on yeast).

I would put it in the keezer, leave it on gas and let it condition for the week and see how it is.

The other will/should be finished in time but will probably be a little green on boxing day.
Thanks for the reply, I went to the Country Brewer website to see if I could find the yeast but it doesn't say Some kind of ale yeast I'm guessing (unhelpfully). I just used whatever came with the kit, which was Wals Pale ale. Sorry I said rapid creek in my post, but I was having a blonde moment.

It took a good 5 or 6 hours to get from 27 to 21.

The second one I put down had an initial SG of 1.03 which I thought was a little low. I used 1kg ultra brew in both (500g Light Malt / 250g Maltodextrin / 250g Dextrose.)
 

stux

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The yeast were only pitched after the temp dropped below 21C, which seems good.

I'd say although the fermentation has been on and off, by now it's done. Just chill and enjoy the beer.

Any flaws in it now are probably from the kit/yeast
 

acarey

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Thanks Stux. How bad can it be right? At the early stage I'm at in my brewing career, even average beer on tap in my house is pretty awesome.

 

acarey

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Also, forgot to mention earlier:

There never was much of a foamy build up on top of the wort and the cake at the bottom was pretty thin. <1cm
 

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