Yesterday, I went to the basement to get a clean shirt out of the laundry.
Just as I was about to turn off the light I thought: “Hmmm, smells like beer in here…CRAP!”
I went around the corner and sure enough, one of my Cream Ale fermentors had gotten a little aggressive during the night. and was oozing out of the airlock.
I usually don’t have that problem in my bucket fermentors, mainly due to adequate headspace. I also used dry yeast and don’t usually expect such a vigorous fermentation from on packet of yeast. Anyway, I set to cleaning up the mess. Luckily it wasn’t dripping over the edge of the bucket yet, so I caught it just in time.
I noticed one thing that was quite a surprise too. The blow off was all yeast, no hop trub whatsoever. Why is that significant????
Well because this time, rather than just transfer my wort from kettle to fermentor, I made a special effort to remove the break material from the flow. I have a large salad bowl sized stainless steel mesh strainer that I used to use years ago for letting grain bags drip back into the kettle for extract brewing. This session I cleaned and sanitized the strainer and I diverted the outflow from my siphon tube from the fermentor to the strainer. (Essentially, using the strainer as a grant.)
I caught almost all of the hop debris and break material in that strainer and passed clean wort into the fermentor. The clean wort is evidenced by the total lack of stuff in the blowoff. So, I am pretty excited to get a look at these beers when I transfer them to secondary in glass. (Yes, Mr. Skip The Secondary is planning a secondary with these brews.) Needless, to say I am excited about tasting these brews when they are done.
I’ll be sure to reflect back on that when I post about tasting these beers in the near future. For now, I can only dream about Mild and Cream Ale wondrousness.