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Chinook IPA - Fermameter at 80 degrees... Bad?


I am brewing my first beer with the NB deluxe brewing kit. It is the Chinook IPA using the dry yeast that came with the kit. Everything thing went well on brew day minus one tiny thing. I have two questions:

  1. I forgot to add the last hop addition until the wort had been cooling for a few minute in the ice bath. Does this put my beer at risk for contamination?

  2. I racked the beer into the primary fermentor and pitched the yeast with the temp around 72 degrees. It started gasing through the airlock in a matter of 30 mins or so and continued to get more frequent and active in the next 48 hrs. Now 80 hrs or so into it, the bubbling has slowed down to a steady but much slower pace. I checked the fermameter and it was reading 80 degrees, though back down to 77 degrees or so. Am I hurting the yeast when the temp hits 80? I don’t know how well I can control temp in my apartment in the warming days to come. IS this going to be a big deal with my brew?

Thanks for any help and advice!

  1. Maybe, depending on the temp and how long it was at that temp. Don’t throw it out yet. There is a good chance that nothing will happen.

More critical was the fermentation temperature. A measured 80f at the fermentor surface might be an 85f internal temperature. Both are too high for most yeasts. Google “swamp cooler” for cheap/easy was to keep your fermentor cool. Is your beer ruined? Maybe not. Let it continue to ferment and finish. I would let the yeast clean up its by-products giving it an extra week longer. Then bottle/keg and see what happens. Then start your second batch, applying what you have learned.

I did the same thing to my first batch (Caribou Slobber) and it turned out well. Not great but very drinkable.

Thanks for the response. After reading, I’ve decided to order a mini fridge and temp control through Amazon. Did a little research and made the purchase. Temp control is, now, just a few UPS packages away, thankfully.

One last question:

Will the temp change kill the yeast? make them go dormant? If so, are there ways to revive them?

I have my fingers crossed with the yeast. Hopefully, I can get the fridge in and get it under control before it is too off.Good advice on giving it a bit of extra time. Seems like a smart thing to do before bottling. Either way, I have a dunkelweisen kit on the way for when I put this IPA in secondary. So, no matter what happen with this first batch, I will drink it with pride and look forward to upping my game for the second.

Once again, thanks for the response!

At this point the damage is done you may get some unwanted flavor from the warmer temp. Most of the fermentation is completed so like mentioned above let it sit at room temperature for three weeks and then bottle age for 3. It will probably be drinkable. IPA can be forgiving. I wouldn’t worry about the late hop addition it’s whirlpooling we do it all the time

Yes to warm or to cold your yeast might go dormant. Maybe a idea. If you think your yeast did not do its work. Take a grav reading see what happend. A swamp cooler might be a idea to keep your temp under control. You can try cask yeast conditioning as well add this while botteling or kegging

As to question 1. Does putting hops after the boil increase risk of infection? When we dry hop, we simply dump more hops into the beer. No one tries to sanitize those hops before dropping them in, so I presume they’re pretty clean. They also inherently resist infections. Sure, when dry hopping the beer has alcohol and much less sugar, which makes it less likely to support an infection, but still, I really don’t see the risk here.

As others have said the temps were too high, but you didn’t kill the yeast. Yeast love it warm, even body temperature. They just don’t make great beer at those temps. Good advice to let it sit a bit longer to clean up. But if you end up with flavors like rocket fuel, I don’t think that goes away. Good move getting a temp controlled space for the next batch.

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Check the inside dimensions of the fridge before ordering it. Many have a ledge in the back of the bottom that has the compressor behind it. If it’s a one gallon kit then no problem. If it’s a five the fermenter may not fit. Even if it is a one gallon, you will go larger some day.

One nice thing about it being an IPA is the large amount of hops can cover up some mistakes. Some yeast strains work better if you are unable to control temps well. Check out hothead ale yeast and Kveik at NB. Looks like the Hothead is out of stock right now though.

I bought a 4.6 cubic ft model for temp control. Should fit one 6gallon carboy after I take the inside door panel off, if the research I did was accurate. It’ll be nice ot have some control.

Does temp matter after primary ferm is over or is it ok for it to just be stored at room temp after the first 2-3 weeks while dry hopping?

The temperature is crucial for the first 72 hours give or take, after that generally room temp is fine. See @brew_cat 's post above. I’m dry hopping in a keg right now at room temp.

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