Fermentation - 15 hour mark (1st homebrew)

Saturday’s batch of Weizenbier (Hefeweizen) was a success. It was a very simple beer kit and not one worth promoting too much given its simplicity but, for the first brews, I was aiming for a simple beer that I could do successfully so as to not dampen my enthusiasm with a screwed up first batch. I’m bad about losing momentum if I slip too early in something new. So, that batch went well. On Sunday, I brewed the 2nd kit which was a Double IPA which was a bit more complicated. That kit included liquid extract (LME) and dried extract (DME) as well as a hop additions schedule and instructions for dry hopping at the 3 day mark. So, more ingredients, more time keeping and a bit more patience was required. I made a couple of mistakes.

  • I forgot to add the DME at the same time as the LME. I added the DME about 20 minutes into the 30 minute boil (prior to the hop additions) and frantically added it. In total, the LME boiled for 50 minutes and the DME boiled for 30. I did do a malt boil prior to adding any extract and, after some research, it seems that the malt simmering initially + the LME means the hops were able to activate and do their thing so I should be okay. Let’s hope. I didn’t have any clumping which is good.
  • I had 1 boil over which resulted in maybe 2-4 ounces of liquid being lost which is a lot considering the boil was only 1.5 gallons. I’m hoping this doesn’t equal to a hoppier beer since the boil over happened before the last hop additions of Citra
  • I had issues with the auto-siphon. No idea why as it worked fine on the 1st batch. This involved manually pouring the kettle out into a strainer that strained to a funnel and into the glass carboy. It wasn’t easy but it was effective and, of course I sanitized constantly everything that came in contact with the cooled wort.

Today, we’re at the 24 hour mark and my wort is in the glass carboy and there’s 1 inch of Krausen showing me signs that the yeast has started to do it’s thing. 

An issue I had with the first batch (as you can see in the photo above) is, at the 15 hour mark of fermentation, the krausen began to get a bit overexcited and came into my airlock just a bit. I posted to some home brewing forums and was immediately guided to get a blow-off tube on ASAP. I went to the local hardware store, and got a pipe that fit the bung stopper and had that going into a 6.5 gallon bucket with starsan and water. Flow off is still happening a full 48 hours later but has started showing signs of slowing. I preemptively attached a blow-off tube to my batch yesterday just in case with both carboys having tubes going into the bucket of star san solution. 

I hear, with 5 gallon or smaller carboys that blow off is more common and less likely on 6.5 gallon buckets or 7+ gallon carboys. Basically, brewing 5 gallon batches in 5 gallon carboys will have this issue. 


So, that’s all for now. We’ll see what happens next.