hist-brewing: A Question to the Brewers

PBLoomis at aol.com PBLoomis at aol.com
Wed Feb 17 19:26:26 PST 1999

In a message dated 2/16/99 11:32:01 PM EST, allotta at earthlink.net writes:
<<  This could be a sign of Brettanomyces infection.  Brett usually is slow to
 it's film.  Other than that I can't guess.  Did you get any alcohol? >>
 > Question to the Brewers:
 > I made a ginger ale (not the soda pop) for the first time. My recipe said
 > it should start foaming in 24 hours. I didn't get any foam, I did get
 > bubbles. But what I did get, which was weird was, after sitting for a
 > month, was a paraffin type growth on the top of my brew.
 > It could be lifted off in one piece like a thin layer of soft wax, but it
 > had an elastic feel to it (like connective tissue found in fresh meat). And
 > it grew back. Has anyone ever had this happen to their ale - is my ale OK
 > or is this a sign of "contamination?"
 > Kama Lee >>

	How does your potion smell?  Is it toxic?  Is it drinkable?  How's the taste?
That's the real test.  
	There is a technique for testing unknown plant materials, when you are
starving in the woods and have no access to analytical equipment.  It can
probably be adapted here.
	Put two separate drops on the inside surface of your lower arm.  Wait one
day.  If your arm shows no reaction, it's probably not toxic.  
	Pour some in a brandy snifter, warm it by cupping it in your hand, and sniff
carefully.  If it smells okay, it probably is.
	Take a small taste.  Roll it around in all parts of your mouth.  If it tastes
terrible, or any part of your mouth has an adverse reaction, spit it out.  
	If it's okay, swallow.  Monitor your reaction for a day.  If you're still
okay, it probably is too.
	There are very few things that will grow in beer or ginger ale that are
really toxic.  Most of the bad ones just make your brew undrinkable.

	Slainte mhath (pronounced Slahn-jay va) To your good health,     Scotti

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