Frequently Asked Questions

We’ve assembled a list of frequently asked questions we receive about BrewSmith home brewing kits to put your minds at rest.  If you still can’t find the answer you’re looking for, send us a message. 

Why are BrewSmith beer making kits better than other home brewing kits like Coopers, Cascade or Muntons?

  • The process is more involved and fun!  You actually cook the beer on a stove top and add the hops yourself.
  • The fermenter is made of glass, not plastic, making it easier to clean (hygiene in beer making is very important).  Glass also stops the beer from oxidizing (and tasting like wet cardboard).
  • The ingredients are high quality – they’re on par with those used by commercial craft breweries. You’re making craft beer, not homebrew!
  • The kit is a manageable size – meaning you don’t need any special equipment. A normal kitchen and kitchen equipment are all you need for brewing. You don’t need a big space for brewing: the fermenter is about the size of a table lamp.
  • The instructions are easy to follow – we have printed instructions in the kit and also video instructions online for visual learners
  • The beer can be customised to suit your tastes – experiment!  Want to try orange or lime zest in your blonde ale instead of lemon? Go ahead! Want to do a treacle infused Russian Imperial stout? Give it a shot, and let us try some!
  • We’re on hand on email and social media to answer your questions or help you if you do ever have a problem.  We aim to answer your questions within 24 hours.
  • The beer it produces tastes great and the results are consistent – these brewing kits have been tried and tested many times and refined until they were just right.  You can be confident that you’ll like the beer.
  • Your first time making beer can be a success.

 

What comes in my BrewSmith beer making kit?

Your kit contains everything you need to make your first batch of beer.  All you need are some bottles and basic kitchen equipment.  Your kit contains malt extract, hops, specialty grains, and premium brewing yeast, comprehensive instructions, 5 litre glass fermenter, airlock, bung, syphon with hand pump, bottle brush and sanitiser.

 

What kind of bottles should I use for bottling my beer?

There are a number of options.  We recommend re-using screw top wine bottles or Grolsch style flip top bottles.  You can also re-use beer bottles and buy caps and cappers from us too. You can also buy the flip top style bottles from home brewing stores such as Liquorcraft too, but they’re not required for home brewing.

 

How much is shipping?

Check out this blog post for details. Basically, it’s about $10 for Victoria and $15 elsewhere to ship a kit. Buy in bulk and save.

 

Can I reuse my kit?

Yes, absolutely! We choose to use a fermenter made of glass; it’s easy to clean and reuse without risk of contamination. Plastic can develop scratches and cavities which are almost impossible to clean.  With glass, all you need to do is sanitise your equipment, choose which flavour you’re going to do next and buy a brewing recipe refill.

 

How long does brewing take?

About an hour of boiling time (cooking on your stove top) followed by a week or two in the fermenter (where your alcohol develops). Two weekss in bottles (where the carbonation develops) and your beer is ready to drink.

 

Is brewing hard to do?

No, people have been brewing beer at home for thousands of years.  If you can make soup, you can make beer!  There are 3 simple steps to follow and the yeast really does most of the work for you.

 

Does the beer taste good?

Yes.  Natural, quality ingredients and craft brewing methods produces craft beer.  Don’t believe us?  Come along to a craft beer event and taste some with us!.

 

Will the bottles explode?

If you follow the instructions, explosions are a thing of the past. Exploding home brew bottles are a result of three things:

– Bad yeast — The yeast we include with every recipe is used in craft brewing. It ferments quickly and cleanly. We pack it ourselves in a food grade facility.
– Bad malt — Our kits include brewing malt that is unmatched in the homebrewing industry which ferments quickly and cleanly. Old style canned kits are a few grades lower.
– Too much sugar — The easy to follow brewing instructions have simple measurements for carbonation sugar. It’s easy!

 

What temperature do I need to brew at?

As long as your brew during fermentation is above 10 degrees Celsius and below 30 degrees Celsius, it will turn out just fine.  Even if the temperature does sneak up past 30 degrees on those hot summer days, it will still be drinkable but drier than usual since the heat causes faster fermentation.
Basically: if you’re comfortable, your yeast will be comfortable.

 

How many beers does the BrewSmith beer making kit produce?

13 stubbies or 4.5 litres

 

What’s the cost per beer?

After the initial investment of the kit, re-fills are $20-$25 or $1.50-$2.00 per stubbie

 

Where can I buy the BrewSmith beer making kits and refills from?

You can buy online or check out one of our many stockists all over Australia.  We also teach classes in Melbourne whenever we can.

 

Where does the alcohol come from?

The yeast eats the natural sugars present in the malt extract and produces alcohol.  Yeast is our friend!

 

What are hops?

Hops are a flower from a type of herb.  They are a natural preservative and add bitterness to your beer to counteract the sweetness of the malted barley.  They also add delicious aromas to your beer: fruity, herbal, floral, spicy or pine.  There are many types of hops around which change the flavours and aromas of your beer.  Our favourites are sourced mostly from Australia and some others from around the world.

 

What’s the alcohol content of the BrewSmith beer making kits?

The approximate strength is listed in each recipe or kit in the shop.  Anywhere from 4.4% up to over 7!
Summer Citrus Blonde Ale is 5.1%, 6.4% for the Honey Bomb Wheat Beer, 7.1% for the Hoppy Heart IPA, 5.9% for the Red Rye Ale and 5.3% for the Chocolate Paradise Porter.

 

How can I tell the alcohol content?

We know the alcohol content of the beer our beer making kits produces (see question above) but if you wanted to calculate it for yourself, you’ll need a hydrometer and measure the specific gravity.  You would measure the amount of sugar in the beer prior to fermentation and the sugar remaining after fermentation.  A few calculations later and you have your alcohol by volume or abv %.  You can buy hydrometers on our website.

 

Will the beer I make give me bad hangovers?

No, your hangovers (if any) should be vastly improved since this beer contains no preservatives and doesn’t use any filtration agents (often fish/egg/dairy products) like commercial beer.

 

Do I need any special equipment?

Along with the BrewSmith kit, you only require standard kitchen equipment.  A large stock pot, funnel, a spoon and a sieve are all you need.

 

Can I change the recipe and experiment?

Sure!  We encourage you to experiment – we’d love to hear how it went!  Want to add orange or lime zest to your Summer Citrus Blonde beer instead of lemon?  Go ahead.  Or maybe you’d like to add ginger or spices to your Chocolate Paradise Porter.  The variations you could make are endless.  Experiment with nuts, spices, herbs, fruits and vegetables (e.g. pumpkin or beetroot).  You just add the flavours in during the last few minutes of the boil.

 

 

What if I want to make a larger quantity than 4.5 litres?

You could buy our Brewery Expansion pack and make double the quantity.  Making 2 beers is really not much more work than 1.  You’d also need 2 recipe refills.

 

Where do the ingredients come from?

We source our ingredients from the same place as the craft brewing industry.  We use both Australian and imported ingredients.

 

How long do the ingredients last for?

For the freshest beer, use your ingredients immediately.  However, they’ll be fine for a few months.

 

Where can I go for further information?

Find us on Facebook, Instagram and Twitter or send us a message through the ‘Contact/Help’ page.

 

125 thoughts on “Frequently Asked Questions

  1. Regina says:

    My airlock isn’t level, but it stopped bubbling weeks ago, and it’s been 3 weeks (cider). It’s hot. Can I bottle?

    • Adrian says:

      Hi Regina, sounds like your cider is ready – sometimes the airlock level can be affected by weather. After 3 weeks in warm temperatures, your cider should be ready to bottle regardless.
      Cheers!

  2. Kristian says:

    Hi there!
    It’s been about 30 hours since I finished the boil on my Hoppy Heart IPA. Should it be bubbling by now?
    I’m worried that I might have messed something up, as I forgotp up the fermenter with water immediately after adding the yeast.
    I remembered about 4 hours later, so then topped it up and gave it a little shake.
    Hope to hear from you soon.
    Kristian

      • David says:

        Hey i have this happening me too, on day 2 and no yeast has risen yet, all at the bottom but am glad that it can take up to 72 hrs! Great

  3. Josh says:

    Hi,

    My Honey Bomb Wheat Beer has the same problem as above; it has been about 30 hours and still has not started fermenting. While I now know it can take a while to get started the brew has also ended up a really dark red/brown colour. Is everything still ok or have I stuffed up somewhere? Why would it have gone this colour?

    Thanks for your help =)
    Josh

    • Adrian says:

      Hey Josh,
      That’s normal, it can take a day or three to get started sometimes. The dark colour is because the yeast has fallen to the bottom of the beer.
      Email us if it doesn’t start after 3 days.

  4. Ruth says:

    Hi

    My beer won’t carbonate. It’s been bottled for over a month and I can tell a little carbonation but it’s basically flat.

  5. Ruth says:

    Hi Adrian

    I have a couple if batches. A summer ale and the choc porter. They are bottled in screw top wine bottles.

    Thanks

    • Adrian says:

      I’d highly suspect the screw tops aren’t sealing; try re-adding the sugar and re-tightening the tops. They may need more force than expected, or the seals could be out of place. Let us know how it goes,

  6. Adam says:

    Hey guys. I am thinking about using organic coconut sugar at the bottling stage instead of normal sugar. Have you tried this before? How did it turn out and with which recipe? Would it be a 1:1 ratio?
    Thanks heaps.

    • Adrian says:

      Hey Adam,
      I just looked up the difference in sugars, and it’s very similar in composition to normal cane sugar. How does it taste? Would like to try some.

  7. Andrew says:

    My first batch of Wattle Pale Ale has reached the end of two weeks since bottling (warm to hot weather). There seems to be sediment at the bottom of most of the bottles, and one or two seem to have small whiteish floaters. Is this the yeast, or did something go wrong in the sanitisation/sealing of the bottles? Have yet to crack one open…

    • Adrian says:

      Hey Andrew,
      It’s probably a bit of yeast floating around. Usually fine, make sure you double check before drinking the whole bottle! Sediment is natural and healthy – it’s the natural yeast in your beer.

  8. Gary says:

    Hi I brewed a batch of Aussie Wattle Pale Ale four days ago and the yeast seems to be working overtime. Foam has been bubbling up through the airlock and out the top. I have the brew in the garage which has been about 28 degrees C during the day. The brew container was filled to the normal level. Have I got a problem with the brew?

    • Adrian says:

      Hi Gary, just sounds like an excitable batch of yeast. Might want to sanitize the airlock again when the beer settles down, or use the blowoff tube for a day or two.

    • Adrian says:

      Hey Kane, in the instructions it says to wait at least a week before bottling. There are three things it says to do in the instructions – stops bubbling, starts to clear and has fermented for at least a week. Cheers.

      • Kane says:

        Oh ok sorry, I thought it said in your video wait 4-5 days check it and if it’s bubbling once a minute it’s ready to bottle. I’ll wait the full week and see how it is.

        • Adrian says:

          Oh yeah, it says 4-5 more days in the end of the video but that’s after the initial 48 hours. We’ll update it to make sure it more clear. Cheers!

  9. Edmund says:

    Hello,
    I’ve got a juicer and a couple of kilos of apples. I’d like to replace pasteurised apple juice with my own apple juice in the apple cider recipe. If I add some water to bring it up to 4 litres and boil it, will that be ok? Or will I end up with a fermenter full of random microorganisms? Thanks.

    • Adrian says:

      Hey Edmund,
      Most of the time, the apples will have enough wild yeast to ferment themselves. It’s the traditional way to make cider. Alternately, you can bring it up to a boil however apple juice can gel from all the pectin. I’d say try natural fermentation and see how it goes.
      Cheers.

  10. Darcy says:

    Due to a problem sourcing bottles, i may have to leave my beer in the fermenter and extra few days.

    Will this have a major impact on the brew?

  11. Derek says:

    Hi, my Citrus Summer Ale that was fermenting for around 10 days and been bottled for 3 weeks is golden yellow and cloudy and has a little sediment in all bottles.
    Did something go wrong? And if not, am I meant to roll the bottles to circulate the sediment before pouring or avoid drinking the sediment?
    Thanks!

    • Adrian says:

      Hi Derek,
      Sediment is quite normal. If you wait a few days more before bottling it will be clearer but it’s no big deal. Avoid pouring it into your beer (best to drink the yeast separately – tons of nutrition)!

  12. Damien says:

    Hi brew smith,
    i finished a batch a while ago and when i went to open it the beer just oozed out with foam, like the beer was too gassy! Is that due to too much sugar? it was in the fermenter for over the week before i bottled and wasn’t pooping in the airlock.
    Thanks

    • Adrian says:

      Hi Damien,
      Sounds like a bit too much carbonation sugar. Did you use a proper measuring spoon or a normal teaspoon? We’ve found up to 40% variance in volume using normal teaspoons.

      • Damien says:

        Hi Adrian,
        Thanks for the reply, I used carbonation drops that I was given. I’ll try just the old fashion way next. Thanks

  13. Adam says:

    Hi Adrian. I just started the cider yesterday afternoon. It doesn’t seem to have a head on it at all or bubbling. It is winter. Should I heat the room? How will I know when to start with the airlock?

    • Adrian says:

      Hi Adam,
      If it’s super cold, you can add the airlock straight away. Best to put the fermenter in a saucepan with warm water if you can to get it started if it’s under 15 degrees in your house.
      Cheers

  14. Peter says:

    Hi Adrian, I was just wondering how I can pick up a home brew kit and future refill recipes and other ingredients from your store or in person without having to go through the mailing system, Im worried of damage. I also live in Melbourne.
    Cheers. Peter

    • Adrian says:

      Hi Peter,
      If you have any damaged kits or refills just drop us a line, we’d be happy to fix it for you.
      Thanks,
      Team BrewSmith

  15. Dave says:

    Hi Adrian I made my red rye ale on Saturday night and it’s now Tuesday night and still no bubbling. Did I mess something up? Anything I can do to try and activate the yeast? Cheers.

    • Adrian says:

      Hi Dave,
      It might just be cold. Put your fermenter in a saucepan of warm water and wrap it in a towel. You should see a faint circle of bubbles developing in the middle of the fermenter in about 24 hours. If not, shoot us an email.
      Cheers

  16. Paul says:

    first brew- it bubbled for about 8 days then stopped for 2, then i added finings then it started bubbling again is that normal?

    • Adrian says:

      Hi Paul, what kind of finings did you add? Yes, it’s normal for some more bubbling action to start when the fermenter is stirred or disturbed after a week or so.

  17. scott says:

    How do i get a clearer brew i use finnings but still get a lot of sediment in bottom of my bottles which makes the second glass out of a 750 ml bottle very cloudy. Have heard about secondary fememtation any idea’s?

    • Adrian says:

      Hey Scott,
      If your beer is cloudy, try leaving it in the fermenter for an extra week. Also, be gentler with syphoning and when you finally pour your beer into a glass, leave the last cm or so on the bottom. Cheers!

  18. Josh says:

    Hi Guys,

    I brought the cider kit and after approx 5 days its is bubbling however there is a large layer on the bottom of bottle. Is this normal, I was under impression it should be rising not falling or am I completely wrong?

      • SK says:

        Hi there, I’ve got the cider kit. Followed instructions and am a bit confused re what’s happened. First, it’s been six days and no bubbling. Secondly, the half-glass of sanitizer in which the long hose was sitting has mostly disappeared – where did it go!? 🙂 Could it have been sucked into the fermenter?

        Advice welcome, thanks.
        SK

        • Adrian says:

          Hi SK,
          Can you take a photo of your fermenter and send it to us? It’s often easier to diagnose that way. It’s possible that you missed the bubbling part. Try putting the airlock in now. It would be very unlikely that the cider sucked up the sanitizer since the cider generally warms up and the air expands in the fermenter as well as the yeast beginning to ferment. Anyways, shoot us a pic via email and we can help diagnose your situation. Cheers!

  19. Simon Black says:

    Hello, I am trying out the Hoppy Heart at the moment and after brewing on Saturday we have had no sign of bubbling as yet. I was just wondering if it is worth waiting a bit longer or should I add more yeast? As to the yeast, is it OK to use supermarket bought yeast and if so how would you go about it? Thankyou and cheers, simon

    • Adrian says:

      Hi Simon,
      It can take up to 4-5 days to get started sometimes. If there are no signs of bubbling or fermentation tomorrow, send us a message through the Contact + Help form on the website. Do not use bread yeast under any circumstances – it will leave a horrible flavour and will not ferment the sugars properly!
      Cheers

  20. Tim says:

    Hi,
    I’m quite excited by your cider kit and have requested one for Christmas! How much apple juice is required, and are there better types or things to watch out for in buying it?
    Thanks,
    ~Tim

    • Adrian says:

      Hi Tim,
      We use 4 litres per batch, and generally the stuff that’s cloudy and refrigerated is best as it has been pasteurized but has no preservatives. Happy brewing!

  21. Andrew says:

    Hi Adrian,

    I am 2 days into my hoppy heart IPA, I just added my hops and have replaced the hose with the airlock.
    I noticed my brew was dark and flat (no foam at all) quite different from your video, im thinking my yeast is still sleeping?? Also I have had the kit for about a year so now sure if there is a used by on any of the ingredients?

    Thanks
    Andrew

    • Andrew says:

      its bubbing away now 🙂 so much so it has bubbled right up through the airlock Twice (re sanitized), i have switch back to the blow off tube now untill things settle down.. am I on the right track here?

      • Adrian says:

        Hey Andrew,
        Yes, you’re doing the right thing. Glad to see the yeast woke up after sitting around for a year or so, you must have stored them somewhere cool and dark!
        Happy brewing.

        • Andrew says:

          Hey Adrian,
          thanks for getting back to me.
          I woke up this morning and found that my (red)Plug had gotten clogged with hops and had been dislodged from the fermenter. I cleaned and resterilised the plug and hose. I have no idea how long my brew was exposed with out the plug, worst case scenario 12 hours. is my brew ruined?

  22. Stefan says:

    Hi there,

    I’ve brewed your cider kit and it’s ready to bottle. Just checking – do I add table sugar AND the included sweetener to each bottle – the enclosed sweetener won’t be turned into alcohol? Or have I misread and you only add one or the other?

    Thanks!

    Stefan

  23. Tim says:

    I put my first batch of cider on on Friday night, and it was bubbling quite friendlily over the weekend, but by yesterday (Monday) it had already calmed down, and now it’s barely bubbling – there’s a bubble through the airlock about every 15-20 seconds. So it’s only been brewing for a few days, and the temperature has been perfectly between 14 and 34 degrees. This is my first brew, so I’m just a bit panicky! 😉 Is this normal, or something to be worried about?

  24. Grant says:

    As far as priming sugar goes for the wattle pale ale in 450mL bottles, what is 1/4 teaspoon + a pinch in grams and does that change if you use caster sugar rather than table sugar?

  25. Alex says:

    Just wanting to know a guide on shelf life. Guessing the ipa and pa are shortest but a guideline on all would be great.

    • Adrian says:

      Hey Alex,
      Since they’re bottle fermented, they will last a very long time. We’ve had beers that were a year old and still in great condition. Most of the lighter beers are best within a few months, but still OK at 6 months, the darker beers can keep even longer. At 9 months, you’ll mostly just be tasting the malt as the hops will fade with time.
      Cheers!

  26. Alex says:

    I happen to have an urn lying around, so if I do the boil in there is it ok to pour hot into the fermenter and then stick that in the sink to cool or better to pour into a pot?

  27. Michael says:

    Hello,
    My latest batch of Wattle came out a little flat. It had some sprits but tasted like a beer that had been poured into a glass and left for 10 min. Very little head.
    It was the first time I used recycled swing-top Grolsch bottles.
    I added the recommended amount of sugar for the secondary ferment.
    I used raw sugar.
    Not sure if it is the amount of sugar I used or the seal of the bottles.
    Any thoughts?
    Thanks
    Michael

    • Adrian says:

      Hi Michael,
      We recommend using white table sugar, not raw sugar. Raw sugar is quite variable in sugar type and density. Try adding a bit more of your raw sugar for the next batch or using white sugar instead. Also, make sure you are using a proper measuring spoon. Let us know how it goes!

  28. Nat says:

    Hi,

    My first batch, HHIPA, 450ml grolsh bottles. used 1/4 tsp table sugar which I heaped in order to account for the extra “pinch”

    I have tried two bottles, got the satisfying “pop” when I opened them, but there’s not head, the smallest amount of tiny bubbles but the beer is pretty much flat. It looks lovely, like a maple syrup/honey amber, and it tastes pretty nice, but it’s almost entirely flat.

    I am concerned that this amount of sugar just isn’t enough, from what I’ve read online most recommend a whole teaspoon for a bottle this size. I have already bottled another 2 batches, and I’m worried they’ll be flat too.

    Any suggestions? Thanks,

    • Adrian says:

      Hi Nat,
      The carbonation level sometimes needs to be adjusted. One whole teaspoon is way too much and will usually result in a pile of foam on the floor when the bottle is opened. I’d recommend adding another 1/4tsp to the remaining bottles and re-sealing. How warm is it in your house? Make sure you aren’t storing them on the cold floor while they carbonate.
      Happy Brewing!

      • Nat says:

        Thanks, I’ll try that. I’m on the Gold Coast – pretty warm here, 28 during the day, and about 19 at night, downstairs (in the cupboard, where the beers are) stays at between 21-27 for the most part.

        After I add the extra 1/4 tsp, should I leave them another two weeks, or should I try sooner? Cheers 🙂

  29. Mark says:

    Hi,

    My Chocolate beer kit is 1 year old, I could not brew it in time before going overseas. I’m now back and my beer doesn’t seem to bubble and very little foam was produced after shaking it for a long time. Is it possible the yeast or something else has expired?

    Thanks!

    • Adrian says:

      Hi Mark,
      After a year, there’s a good chance the yeast won’t activate. Pick up a bottle of Sierra Nevada Porter and use the dregs to start your beer. It should go well. Let us know how it goes,
      -Team BrewSmith

      • Tim says:

        I think I might be in a similar position with my porter, is this just a case of quaffing the Sierra Nevada, then tipping the dregs into the fermenter?

          • Tim says:

            Hello Adrian, I gave that a go (a nice drop that Sierra Nevada too), but it’s been a few days since then, and about 5 days since the initial brewing, and there’s still no sign of life in my porter. Anything else I could do?

  30. Nat says:

    Just wanted to update you. I re-primed the HHIPA bottles and it turned out good.

    I’ve also got the Espresso IPA and the Red Rye (I picked up some extra hops and dry hopped it) ready, I’ve been drinking all three over the last few weeks and they’re excellent. My favourite is the red rye IPA but the espresso is also really something.

    I’ve got a double batch of the HHIPA cold crashing now, it’ll be going into a keg tomorrow. Happy days!

  31. Tam says:

    Hi. I’d love to give this a goDoes temperature effect the fermentation process? I’m on the Gold Coast and live in a shed so can’t control temperature.

    • Adrian says:

      Hi Tam,
      It’s best to keep the temps under 30C, otherwise it will taste fairly fruity and quite dry. If you can wrap it in a blanket or keep in an esky, the temperature should be more moderate.
      Cheers!

  32. Ben says:

    GDay Adrian,
    I have some old kits that i purchased maybe a year ago that have been stored in a dark cupboard. Dusted them off, started with the Cider, and I’ve got absolutely no action after a week and a half. Is it possible that the yeast has perished? Is the cider recoverable?

    • Adrian says:

      Hey Ben,
      Yep after a year, odds are good that the yeast has died off. Best thing to do is buy a Sierra Nevada Pale ale and save the yeast from the bottom of the bottle and add to your cider. It should get started in a few days after that. Oh, and make sure you don’t drink out of the bottle (that’ll introduce a whole bunch of pathogens).
      Cheers!

  33. Josh says:

    I noticed you said you can use the yeast at the bottom of the bottle for another batch and also if we crush apples ourselves they will already have yeast so we don’t necessarily need to add any more,

    If we crush our own apples do we need to add yeast nutrient? Or just crushed apples into fermenting bottle for 2 weeks then add the sweetener and bottle for 2 more

    And the ~2 cm of sediment at the bottom of a simple cider fermenting batch, is that enough yeast to make another batch ? Or will 2 batches of sediment be enough? Cheers

    • Adrian says:

      Hi Josh,
      We include yeast nutrient as it’ll help the fermentation and flavour (it helps mitigate some of the sulphury smells that can come from cider making). If you have your own apples, it’s best to pasteurize the juice (there are a few different ways to do this, see Google for details) before using. There’s a very high risk of infection with wild funky yeasts and bacteria. You’ll only need a tablespoon or so of the yeasty sediment from the bottom of your last batch, of course you can add a bit more if you like too.

      • Josh says:

        Would just pouring new apple juice into the fermenting jug with the sediment work? (Immediately after siphoning the fermented juice out)
        Thanjs

          • Josh says:

            Brilliant, I don’t think I would do it more than twice. When I poured it in, I shook it up to mix the yeast (sediment) in to the new apple juice, it’s now a very cloudy yellow (after the sediment mixed with the apple juice) do you know of this will settle into a clear cider or was that a mistake

            I also have a sediment developing at the bottom of the bottles after bottling the first batch, should I regularly shake up the bottles?

            Thanks so much for your help

  34. Greg says:

    Hi, I made my first batch of Wattleseed Pale Ale yesterday and when I checked on it today I noticed the end of the house had fallen out of the glass of sanitiser. Will this affect the brew? Thanks

  35. Jason says:

    Hi Adrian,

    my wife got me the HHIPA for Xmas, I brewed this recently, was in a temp controlled fridge around 18C. My OG was 1.056, the beer was left at 18C for 10 days then temp dropped down to normal fridge temp for last few days. I just checked my FG and it looks quite high at 1.024, I temp adjusted those and used a calculator to give me an ABV of approx 4.8 which is a lot lower than your 5.9%. I tasted the sample I used in the hydrometer and its a bit on the harsh side like its got a bit of whisky in it (I’m no fan of Whiskey btw).

    I am wondering if this could be a stalled fermentation, it did seem to be slow to get going.

    Do you think its worth trying to pitch some more yeast into it to see if I can get the FG down some more?

    Thanks

    • Adrian says:

      Hi Jason,
      I think your temps are a bit low. We usually get about 6.5-7.0% ABV out of the HHIPA. Might be a good idea to aerate again and leave it at 22-24C otherwise you’ll have a lot of unfermented sugars. There’s plenty of yeast in there, no need to re-pitch. Let us know how it goes!
      Cheers

  36. Jason says:

    I did what you said, it took a couple of attempts until the airlock started to bubble again, its been bubbling slowly for past 10 days now, I just checked the reading and it was at 1.012 so better, abv now closer to 5.8%. Still tastes very strongly flavoured and its very murky, at this stage I’m not sure whether to dump it or cold chill it and give it time in the bottle to see if it settles down.

    I brew ales fairly regularly and general concensus is 18C is the sweet spot for Ale yeasts (I use S05 usually but also BRY-97) and these work fine at these temps, hence not sure where or why this appears to have gone so wrong.

    • Adrian says:

      Hey Jason, you may have gotten a low-viability yeast sachet. It happens sometimes and just means a little longer for the yeast biomass to increase to where it should be. Don’t cold chill it, just let it clear naturally. Then you c an be sure that fermentation has stopped. Email us a few photos if you have a chance.
      Cheers

      • Jason says:

        Adrian,

        just tried one of these after 4 weeks in the bottle, to be frankly honest it was a disaster, still tasted like bad whiskey and I did notice the bottle hadn’t carbonated either, I suspect bad yeast. Was very dissapointing as it was a xmas present from my partner and I think she’s more upset than me. I brew regularly and I know things can go wrong in the process but with this one brew day went very smoothly so I’m surprised at this outcome.

  37. Jeremy says:

    Hi, for the Hoppy Heart IPA is dry hopping (to be done on two day according to instructions) meant to be done right in the middle of fermentation with a fair bit of krausen still?
    Also any benefit (like extra aroma) from leaving it in the fermenter for an extra week?
    Thanks

    • Adrian says:

      Hey Jeremy,
      You’re quite right, you can add the dry hops later in the process if you’d like more aroma. Wait until fermentation has settled and then throw them in for a few days up to 5 days. After that long, the flavour tends to fade a bit.
      Cheers!

    • Adrian says:

      Hi William,
      The cloudiness is from the natural yeast in your beer. It’s best to pour your stubby carefully and leave a little bit in the bottle. Also, you can leave your beer in the fermenter an extra week after fermentation and a bit less yeast will transfer into your finished bottles.
      Cheers!

  38. Jeremy says:

    Hi there, i’ve had two batches that have ended up tasting like Iodine/metal. After the first i made sure i was careful with the amount of sanitiser i used, but have ended up with the same result. Sadly its undrinkable – would there be anything other than the sanitiser that could be causing this?

    • Adrian says:

      Hi Jeremy, the sanitizer will leave a slightly salty flavour, there is no iodine in it. Are you pouring out the sanitizer before adding your beer? It’s no-rinse but you definitely need to remove it from the bottle before adding your beer. The most common cause of off-flavours are dirty bottles. Have you tried a light bleach solution and scrubbing with a bottle brush?

  39. geordie says:

    hey i know you dont have a kit for mead but if i were to use your kit to make a mead could i use a the yeast from your site or would i have to find one specifically for it

    • brewministrator says:

      Hi Geordie, that depends on the recipe you use – mead can be very different depending on how you make it. I’m sure there is a recipe specifying ale yeast, and our yeasts would be perfect for that. Let us know how your mead making progresses!

  40. Adam says:

    Hi there, I have just brewed a Aussie Wattle Pale Ale. I had it in the cupboard for about a year and followed the instructions when I brewed it. After 3-4days the bubbling had settled down and after a week it started to clear (and I thought it was looking ready to bottle). I left it another few days to see if it would continue to settle as it was still cloudy and then it started to bubble again (3-4times/minute). It has now been 3weeks since it went in the fermenter and it is still bubbling (3-4times/minute through the airlock) and is still cloudy. Should I just wait until its less than a minute and clearing or bottle it now? Can it ferment for too long (is 3weeks already too long?). This is my first attempt so not sure if its gone wrong as I had in the cupboard so long? It does smell good though! Thanks

    • brewministrator says:

      Hi Adam,
      Three weeks can be just fine, especially as it gets cooler. Sounds like it may have slowed down quite a bit for a time, where are you based, and how warm is your fermentation area?

      • Adam says:

        Hi Adrian, I am in Brisbane and it is out on the kitchen counter, so probably between 25degs in the day and 20 at night. Its now about 2 bubbles/minute so slowing down. Cheers Adam

        • brewministrator says:

          Should be just fine then. Give it a few days rest after it’s done bubbling and you should be good to bottle.

  41. james says:

    hi i was wondering if i added extra sugar to my cider in addition to the juice would the alchol prodution stop at a certain point and leave some residual sugar to keep it sweet

    • brewministrator says:

      Hey James, you certainly can do that, however it’s very difficult to control and the odds of having an unintended secondary fermentation are very high (read – exploding bottles). The yeast we use is viable up to about 8% abv, perhaps higher. We haven’t tested it’s limits. We’d recommend being very cautious. Cheers!

  42. Chino says:

    Hi, recently i just started my first brew. There was bubbling in the airlock couple of hours after pitching the yeast, but it stopped few hour after that probably 3 hours at most and remained stagnant. And my brew does not have any foam on top of it and i noticed that the sediment occupies more than half of my brew. What seems to be the problem with this? Should i still continue or discard it now? By the way the yeast i have used is for baking due to unavailability of brewer’s yeast here. Thanks in advanced.

    • brewministrator says:

      Hi Chino,
      Bread yeast isn’t the best for brewing. It’ll add a lot of funky fruity flavours (and a distinctly bready smell). It’s also quite a variable product, so not sure how this yeast will behave versus another bread yeast. If it’s fresh, it should start fermenting within 72 hours, so don’t fret. Let us know how it goes!
      -Team BrewSmith

  43. Greg Orrock says:

    Hi,my craft beer is brewing in 8.5 litres as per instructions did not add any sugar.If I brewed normal beer in 8.5 litres do I disregard the sugar as well?If I brew craft beer in a large fermenter do I add sugar?thx.

    • brewministrator says:

      Hi Greg, how did you end up with 8.5 litres? Our kits do not use any sugar, and the batch sizes are 4.5 or 19 litres.

  44. Alan says:

    Hi I have had a couple of tin of brew in a dark cupboard for about 18 months .
    Will they still be alright to use if I buy new hops.
    Thanks.

    • brewministrator says:

      Hi Alan,
      You’ll probably want to grab some more yeast as well, but the malt and malt extract lasts a long time no problem.
      Happy Brewing!
      -Team BrewSmith

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