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This brown ale has been fermenting in its primary for 3 weeks. It had a strong sour smell for the first two weeks which has now pretty much gone away. I looked today and saw this film on top. I’ve brewed a handful of batches and haven’t seen this. Here’s the pic. Thoughts?

Yup. That looks infected. Have you tasted it? 50/50 if it tastes good bottle and drink as soon as humanly possible? Unsure. Doesn’t get much worse than having to dump a batch.

Good luck

Thx for the input. Bad taste too. I tossed it. Back to the drawing board…

Review your sanitation processes. Something introduced bacteria into that beer after the boil. Everything that touches your beer after the boil needs to be clean and sanitized.

I’d seriously consider replacing the bucket too. I’ve heard once they go sour, they stay sour.

Good point JMcK. Probably should consider replacing all plastics that came in contact with that wort. I would.

Call me crazy but don’t throw away your bucket. Bleach it and bleach it again. Then make it into a bottling bucket. I wouldn’t use it as a fermenter anymore. I always recycle them into bottling bucket and never had a problem 10+ years and still no problem.

+1 Or grain storage, etc. Good idea.

Oh, boo. Sorry to see this.

Insofar as the bucket goes, re-purpose it for something other than food handling. Unfortunately, there really is no way to sterilize it without destroying it and it will house some of the same bacteria colonies forever now. That bacteria is in the microscopic imperfections of the bucket pretty solidly now. If you use it as a bottling bucket, you will probably have no problems if you are diligent in your sanitizing procedures, but there may also come a time when you have been diligent and the beer gets infected during bottling anyway. I just wouldn’t chance it, especially since replacing your bucket isn’t really all that expensive. Don’t throw it away, but don’t use it for food handling anymore. My two cents.

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