We help you to perfect your own brewed beer
If you are reading this post, then you have decided to brew beer for the first time or you may have already started the first try – a good decision! During the first brewing process, it may be that your beer may not be as you would like it to be. We’ll tell you what to look for in the first brewing attempts, what problems can occur and how to avoid typical mistakes.
Brewing errors – cause and solution
Even when brewing beer, you learn from mistakes! It’s worth experimenting with the ingredients in each beer brewing process to find out how an ingredient affects taste. Typical problems that occur during the manufacturing process or tasting, we have put together here.
1. Your beer tastes sour
While in a few beer styles such as Lambic or Berlin White the acid is intended, an acidic taste is otherwise undesirable. The main cause of sour beer is that the glass bottles were not properly sterilized before filling. In this case, germs or bacteria are deposited in the bottle and it forms lactic or acetic acid. With the propper disinfectants and bottle cleaners, thorough disinfection will be easy for you.
The hops in beer serve not only as a flavor carrier, but also as a natural preservative. Strongly hopped beer is usually longer lasting and less susceptible to germs and bacteria. On beers such as wheat, whose recipe requires little hops, should be omitted at the beginning of the hobby brewing career as far as possible.
2. Your beer tastes too bitter
Bitterness comes over the hops in your beer. It is to distinguish between bitter and aroma hops. Bitter hop has, as its name implies, more bitter substances. The bitter substances are measured with the α-content. Aroma hops are added to the broth less because of its bitterness, but rather because of its added flavor components. Bitter hops are usually added at the beginning of the cooking process; Aroma hops always after a certain cooking time or 5-10 minutes before the end.
If you let your beer with bitter hops too long contrary to the recommended specifications, you will notice a strong bitterness. In addition, you should calculate the optimal amount for your beer style before adding hops, so as not to have too many bitter substances in the beer.
3. Too little or too much foam in the beer
The carbonic acid produced during fermentation is, in addition to the protein from the cereals, largely responsible for the head of foam. If there is no head of foam when pouring your beer despite proper storage, this can be a mistake in fermentation or hygiene.
If you did not give the beer sufficient time for bottle fermentation, it would not be able to produce enough carbon dioxide. Therefore, take a look at the brew guides you find online to meet the minimum rest time. If desired by your beer style, a higher amount of hops or malt may add stability to the foam. By adding sugar or dry malt, you can additionally dose the amount of foam.
The basic requirement for the formation of foam bubbles is a grease-free vessel. Therefore, when bottling and pouring in the glass, make sure that you do not touch the glass container inside. Even with clean hands, fingerprints can provide minimal fat deposits. In addition, the bottles should be closed with sufficient bottle pressure, so that it comes to carbonation.
4. Too little carbon dioxide in the beer
The carbon dioxide contributes to your beer being perceived as fresh and revitalizing. By contrast, low-carbon beers often stale. So that this does not happen, you should stop the main and bottle fermentation neither too early nor too late. If the main fermentation in the fermentation tank, for example, takes too long, then the bottle fermentation of the bottled beer is insufficient to produce sufficient carbon dioxide. Before bottle fermentation, you can also season your beer with dry malt or sugar to further promote carbonation.
5. Beer does not ferment
Responsible for the fermentation process is the yeast. If the yeast does not develop its effect, then the temperature of the room in which the brewing vessel is located may be too low. For top-fermented yeasts, the temperature of your broth should be approx. 16-20° C.
In addition, you should note the expiration date of the dried yeast, as the yeast cultures die if stored too long. Keep in mindthat during the main fermentation a thick layer of foam does not always form in the brewing vessel. As long as you notice that carbon dioxide rises to the surface in the form of bubbles, the brew is in fermentation.
We clarify further questions about brewing mistakes
Now you can start brewing!