Back to Shopping at NorthernBrewer.com

Carbonation issue

So I’ve run up against something weird that y’all may be able to help me with: all of the last few bottles of my batch of cream ale (NB “Speckled Heifer”) are un-carbonated whereas the first 5 or 6 bottles were close to being over-carbonated. I used 4.5 oz dextrose and 1 oz sucrose in 2 cups water (for 5.5 gallons beer) as priming solution. The beer has been in bottle for over 2 weeks now.

The only difference I can think of is that the first few bottles came from the bottom of the bottling bucket and got a bit more yeast in them. Other than that the bottles are all the same (12 oz brown glass), they’ve all been stored in the same place (the living room closet), the caps are all the same, etc.

I’ve never had this happen - my other beers (which were bottled a week after the “Speckled Heifer”) are well-carbonated albeit a bit young. Any thoughts?

If you have over- and under-carbed beers from the same bottling bucket, it’s usually caused by inconsistent mixing of the sugar. The standard “pour in the bucket and siphon the beer on top” method doesn’t guarantee even mixing - use a long-handled spoon and gently stir the beer after every 6-12 bottles and you’ll keep the sugar in suspension.

I’ve never encountered a problem with the “standard ‘pour in the bucket and siphon the beer on top’ method” but I’ll try stirring after every couple of bottles and see if that helps going forward. As for this batch, is there anything that can be done except wait and hope they get carbonated?

For what it’s worth, the beer itself seems yummy so I’d recommend the kit.

If you open a bottle and there’s no hiss, you could re-cap and set aside, then when you’ve gone through the batch, make a simple sugar syrup, open each bottle, dose with the syrup, then re-cap, and you should get carbonation.

I think I’ll go with Option B: drink the flat beer and learn from my mistake. RDWHAHB.

Yep. That’s a good option. I’ve found that if I pour a flat beer hard into the bottom of the glass, it’ll foam and even though there isn’t carbon dioxide in it, it livens the beer up a bit. Almost like a cask beer. You might give that a try.

Back to Shopping at NorthernBrewer.com