Yesterday I brewed my first ever batch, Witbier extract kit. As it took me over 5 hours, there is room for improving my process.
Issue #1: My OG was 1.040. Instructions showed 1.044 on the low end. I assume this is not that big of a deal? I did lose a little of the two row before steeping and I think I added a little too much water when bringing the total volume to 5 gals.
Issue #2: It took me over an hour to get the temp down to 78*; instructions said at 72* on the high side (my own fault). Since it took so long to get the temp down to 78*, I panicked about contamination and decided to pitch the yeast anyways. Currently the bucket is in the basement and the sticky thermometer says 66*.
Any issues with either of these newbie mistakes?