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1st Time Brewer

Hi All,

I am new to home brewing and just brewed my first batch on Sunday. I got the essential starter kit from NB with the Irish Red Ale extract kit. I read a lot on NBs website watched videos and was on youtube a lot before I brewed and had a pretty good idea of what was going on.

I used an 8 gallon aluminum brew pot that I got from my dad at his restaurant,( i know a lot of people say us SS, but this was what i had at the time) seemed to work fine and I boiled about 4 gallons in it before to get a good “clean.” The whole brew process went fine and followed all the directions. Did a partial boil but with such a big pot I might try a full boil next batch.

When it came to pitching the yeast I had the wort cooled down to about 68 degrees. I used the dry yeast that came with the kit, Danstart Nottingham Ale Yeast. After aerating the wort I pitched the yeast by just sprinking it on top… So i feel like I did everything right. I had the fermentor sit in my spare bedroom which is always a little cooler than the rest of my apartment, which I keep between 68-70 in the New England Winters. So room temp in spare bedroom is usually 65. The fermenting seemed to take off on Monday morning up until Tuesday night. Then I noticed it might have been a little warm in the room for the yeast… Seems like the bubbles in airlock stopped. I know that this is not the number one way to go by to tell how fermenting is going but there was a good a mount of krausen on top. I now have a fan that I can control temp in a corner of my room and have it set for 66… (this a good temp?)

So, Should that be good for the next week while I let it sit for the next week or so?
I also do not have a hydrometer and might buy one to take some FG readings to see if it changes at all towards the end of next week.

I am open to any feedback or suggestions and can not wait to see how this batch turns out once I bottle it and try on in a coupe weeks!! I am def hooked and am already to order my next kit soon!

-Matt :cheers:

Sounds like you have a handle on it. Maybe next time try to pitch at a little lower temp. Most ale yeast it’s best fermented in the mid to low 60’s (beer temp)

You will get more out of your yeast if you rehydrate. Instructions are on the Danstar site. Pitching dry causes yeast cell mortality and stress. Irish Red is not a high OG beer so you will have enough yeast to complete the fermentation for this beer.

Pitching the yeast to cooler wort will be less stressful to the yeast. It is better for the yeast to begin working in wort that slowly warms to the fermentation temperature you will hold. Low 60°s is ideal.

The rehydrated yeast solution will be warmer than the wort. Temper the rehydrated yeast solution by gradually adding the cool wort to slowly drop the temperature.

Nottingham Ale yeast will give you the best flavors if the fermentation temperature is held below 68°. Can be some funky fruity flavors at 68° and above.

Yeast produces heat during active fermentation. 3° to 10° can be expected depending upon the OG of the wort. Higher OG beers have more sugars and require more yeast and produce more heat. Your Irish Red may produce about 3° worth of heat at a wort temperature of 65°. Very active fermentations at higher temperatures produce more heat. I use a swamp cooler to keep the carboy cool. I add a fan for the larger OG beers.

Aluminum pots are just fine. Take some care not to over clean them.

Are you using a propane burner for heat or the kitchen range? Before you try a full boil on a kitchen range do a practice boil. Some ranges can not get 5 gallons up to boil in a practical amount of time. I stick with partial boils.

A hydrometer is an essential tool. It is the only way to determine when a fermentation is completed.

You are off to a rather good start. Welcome to brewing.

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