hist-brewing: Re: hist-brewing-digest V1 #657

BrewInfo brewinfo at xnet.com
Sun Jul 30 10:12:54 PDT 2000

Drake writes:
>That sounds remarkedly like a mild lactobacillus infection (seen many=
> myself).=20
>It will probably get worse than better.
>I'll probably get flamed for this, but I personally would try Campden=
> tablets
>to see if I can kill the bacteria, but it sounds too far gone.

In response to:
>I recently made a batch of missouri blue vine mead, I
>used the pasteurization method, with a gallon and 1/2
>of honey and used champaign yeast. It seems to be
>going along okay, but there is some sort of
>particulate matter floating up top. it seems somewhat
>whiteish around the edges where it gathers just enough
>to see it. I can shake it up, and it will regather up
>top again in a few hours. It doesnt seem to be
>growing, at least not rapidly. I was wondering if this
>could be wax, or something nastier? I dont smell
>anything obviously off, so I thought id pick everyones
>brain and see what you thought..=20
>Steven Sanders

It could be any number of things: any number of strains of bacteria,
mould, sherry flor, and yes, maybe wax too...

My advice is to ignore it.  I had a number of batches of beer that
formed a stretchy kind of film on top (in the bottle) that would break
up when shaken and then reform eventually.  I think it was probably
some kind of mould.  It never bothered the flavour of the beer, so I
didn't worry about those beers, but I did want to get rid of it.  I
eventually got rid of it in subsequent batches by first switching to
filtered air and then to oxygen for aeration/oxygenation of the cooled
wort.  I think there was probably some kind of mould in my basement
air and it got into the beer during aeration.

As for campden tablets, they are not guaranteed to kill anything.  They
really only stun many yeasts and bacteria in your must and give your
cultured (pitched) yeast a head start.  They require an acidic envirionment
to do anything at all and I've heard it's very common for winemakers to
rince their equipment in water to which metabisulphite (aka campden tablets)
has been added.  They might as well be using plain water.


Al Korzonas, Lockport, Illinois, USA
korz at brewinfo.org

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