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Learn from my mistake

So you may never make any of the mistakes I am about to share, but in case you do, here is some advice on how to avoid the latter.

On Memorial Day weekend made batches of Denny’s Bourbon Vanilla Porter and Waldo Lake Amber. Come bottling day this past Sunday, realized that I had added the vanilla beans to the amber and not the porter. Okay, I figured, not unsalvageable, I’ll just add some vanilla beans to the bottling bucket and mix well and I should end up with some vanilla in each bottle. As I got to the bottom of the bucket I saw that despite my mixing, the beans had really glommed together and that some of the aglomerations (?) had made their way into the bottles. Some of these are going to be very vanilla-ey. The beans must separate much more while they are infusing during secondary. Do what you can to get them separated if you are trying to remedy an earlier mistake by adding them at bottling.

P.S. I’ll let you all know how my Waldo Lake Vanilla Amber turns out :slight_smile:

Yeah I’m from the school of thought that often when you try to correct a mistake you often make it worse. Can I ask why you just didn’t wait to bottle and add the beans to the fermenter.

As far as the vanilla amber… who knows, it might turn out quiet nice.

A couple of reasons. I work full time and help out with my wife’s business so time is really tight. I had an opening on Sunday to bottle and took advantage. In addition to the porter and the amber, I had a barleywine that had been bulk aging since February. I am almost out of beer, my ultimate spring league team really put a dent in my stocks. Lastly, I thought it would work :oops:

Vanilla amber? :lol:

[quote=“Denny”]Vanilla amber? :wink: Far from my first mistake, undoubtedly won’t be my last. The taste I had from the bottom of the bucket was fine to me, but perhaps I should send you a bottle for further analysis.

Yeah, getting busy can be a major damper on things and put you in a situation where you have to make a difficult choice.

I got the opposite on beer reserves as I made a bunch and then we found out my wife was expecting so there goes down one drinker… I have officially ran out of cold storage and she has nixed any more fridges/freezers.

I doubt Denny will turn down a free beer! :stuck_out_tongue:

Nope, not even vanilla amber!

I’d have used vanilla extract to remedy this situation.

Says the voice of reason, far removed form the panic situation.

I’m just hitting that point where I’m making some really good beer (as far as I’m concerned) and I have pretty solid confidence. Having made my mistakes (oh the mistakes) and trying to salvage batches, I must admit that I kinda enjoy all the “OMG did I ruin my beer?!?!” posts. It’s funny to see what other people end up doing in that panic moment. :lol:

If you don’t like the vanilla amber stick it away somewhere out of sight and try one in a couple of months or more, vanilla tends to fade as the beer ages.

And, unless you used an exorbitant amount it usually fades almost 100% out.

Says the voice of reason, far removed form the panic situation.

I’m just hitting that point where I’m making some really good beer (as far as I’m concerned) and I have pretty solid confidence. Having made my mistakes (oh the mistakes) and trying to salvage batches, I must admit that I kinda enjoy all the “OMG did I ruin my beer?!?!” posts. It’s funny to see what other people end up doing in that panic moment. :lol: [/quote]
Yeah, I gotta admit my own worry level is almost too low at this point.

Lost track of this thread. Its very likely that my palate is less refined than others, but I am quite happy with both beers. I am detecting some vanilla in the Porter, and the vanilla in the Amber is not off-putting. Good suggestion regarding using extract, but I very rarely repeat mistakes in brewing so hopefully the need will not arise again. Denny, if you really want to try the vanilla amber, pm me a mailing address and I will send a couple.

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