A blorg about brewing beer and writing songs

24 Nov. 2009

Woe to me

I'm very proud of my beer. I've never lost a brew. Every keg of beer I've tapped has been drinkable and, often, delicious. That all changed on Sunday; a day of unseasonably high temperatures (it got up to 40 degrees). A day that I will forever remember as Sour Sunday.

You see, I'd been attempting to make a particularly fine beer. I made it from pure pale malt, which I sparged multiple times to extract as much malty sugars as was possible. I used no bittering hops at all, as I wanted the hopping to be fresh and aromatic, with a summery vibration. I fermented carefully using some fine californian ale yeast. When the fermentation was done my hydrometer told me I had created a brew with a sturdy 10% alcoholic content. I was well-pleased. I kegged up the beer and lowered a sterilised bag, full of aromatic hops into it to sit for a few days, gathering flavour like a mother gathers her young up to her teets.

Then Sunday hit, and at some point before my heat-addled brain thought to move the keg into the fridge my lovingly crafted brew turned to vinegar. I don't really blame it, sitting in our house (the doors closed tight to keep out the heat, but still sweltering at 35 degrees) my mood had also gone acidic. If anything my brew was a mirror to myself, quickly turning sour in the face of the relentless Australian sun.

I'm clinging to a dwindling shred of hope that I can save my brew of it's tangy fate. I've been scouring google, but to no avail. Just now I have sent off some emails to a few homebrew experts who might be able to help me. Perhaps there is some way to neutralise the vinegar and return the flavour of my beloved brew in time for the entertaining I'd planned around it's fruition.

Regardless of the outcome, it seems that little today can lift the weights from my heavy heart.


  1. if you could devise a process that would reverse or correct the process by which undesirable by-products are created in bad fermentation conditions you would be a rich, rich man. I'm sorry for your loss dude.

  2. thanks, man. Perhaps this is my destiny, though. to be a rich, rich man through beer innovation.