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Fermented mash smells like vomit!

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Fermented mash smells like vomit!

Postby noface357 » Thu Feb 20, 2014 9:21 am

Hey all, I just drained off a 70 / 30 corn rye mash, fermented 2 weeks on the grain (my first try at this, 8.8lbs total grain bill per 5 gal H2o) to me it has a very very strong vomit smell :puke-front: , it actually turned my stomach a little bit. I have read alot of information that says dump it because it probably has a bacterial infection and I have read other information that says keep it and run it as something wonderful might come out of it. My gut feeling is something is not right and to dump it but could I be wrong? Kept in a glass ferment with airlock to keep out the nasties but maybe it failed? This is only the 4th mash I have made and maybe I bit off more than I can chew for a beginner :angry-banghead: ?

Thanks Mike
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Re: Fermented mash smells like vomit!

Postby noface357 » Thu Feb 20, 2014 9:39 am

I should have also added there was nothing growing on or in the mash that was visible, it looked very "normal"
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Re: Fermented mash smells like vomit!

Postby noface357 » Thu Feb 20, 2014 5:27 pm

I got the courage to taste it just now, figured it wold not hurt, tasted very sour but not bad at least to my inexperienced taste buds, I'm going to strain it, let it settle and run it ASAP, Fingers crossed.
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Re: Fermented mash smells like vomit!

Postby Stillmiester » Sun Feb 23, 2014 6:06 pm

Yeah give it a run mate, see how ya go! I have ran washes that have caught infections and they have been fine. I would double distil if I were you. And when you start gen off again add a bit more yeast (twice the amount) and it might be strong enough to take it on.. Or just start again of course :handgestures-thumbupright:
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Re: Fermented mash smells like vomit!

Postby Prairiepiss » Wed Feb 26, 2014 7:31 am

Is it a vomit smell? Or a really bad rotten egg smell? Rotten egg could be sulfur compounds. Created during fermentation. You didn't mention what yeast you used?

If it is sulfur? Then running it through a still with copper vapor contact will clear it up. It may take two runs to do it. If its that bad.
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Re: Fermented mash smells like vomit!

Postby Kapea » Wed Feb 26, 2014 6:45 pm

Vomit smell in wash/wort/must can be butyric acid - a product of anaerobic bacterial fermentation. It can be caused by less than sanitary conditions coupled with low dissolved oxygen levels in the wash/wort/must during the yeast respiration phase of fermentation.
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Re: Fermented mash smells like vomit!

Postby noface357 » Fri Feb 28, 2014 8:02 pm

I took the advice you guys gave me and ran it twice, I was very shocked that it actually came out ok, better than ok actually. To clarify it was a vomit smell not a rotten egg smell. I use superstart yeast from white labs. I am giving it another go and have another batch working as of tonight. Any advice on yeast? I have about .75 of a pound of superstart left, as soon as its used up I'd like to experiment with something else.

Thanks for the feedback!!!

Mike
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Re: Fermented mash smells like vomit!

Postby Zombie » Sat Mar 01, 2014 5:55 am

Hi NoFace,
I have been using the same yeast since I began distilling. Old dog, and new tricks sort of thing... Whitelabs WLP045 (DADY). I can attest to its hardiness because I do NOT "pitch" yeast but instead I introduce it brfore the drying stage of malting my Barley.
What I really like the most about it is the flavor it adds (pot stilling). Kinda like cloves or allspice. Maybe some of the smart fellas here can explain why it has this character.
The other nice point is if you add sugar/syrup/cane juice it stands up to 18% Alch. You can make some pretty big production runs with it. Hope this helps... :obscene-drinkingcheers:

I may need to be "put down" soon.
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Re: Fermented mash smells like vomit!

Postby noface357 » Sun Mar 02, 2014 7:33 pm

Thanks for sharing Zombie, you have given me a bit of education on the whitelab yeast, I did not realize it will hold up to 18%!!! I tend to run this next batch as a potstill run so I hope I can pull out some of those spice notes you mentioned, I'll be looking for them on my next run!
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Re: Fermented mash smells like vomit!

Postby Zombie » Sun Mar 02, 2014 8:02 pm

No trouble :grin: .
WhiteLab is sort of a yeast production plant (I think). Here's a link to their site... http://www.whitelabs.com/
There should be some sort of production number on your package. The site will tell you what your yeast is, and does. I used to get mine from a company called Wines Inc. until I found out it was really from WhiteLab. I guess they supply most everyone.

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Re: Fermented mash smells like vomit!

Postby skow69 » Sun Mar 09, 2014 7:51 am

Zombie wrote: I do NOT "pitch" yeast but instead I introduce it brfore the drying stage of malting my Barley.

Do I understand correctly:
Your barley has been soaked and sprouted, then you mix in an amount of dry yeast sufficient to ferment a batch (based on the percentage of malt in your grain bill?) before you kiln it? And you don't add any more yeast after mashing?

Why? And how does the yeast survive the hour(s) of 145*f in the mash tun?

And if it does, then it must start fermenting during the conversion process.

:idea: ???

Is that it?
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Re: Fermented mash smells like vomit!

Postby Zombie » Sun Mar 09, 2014 10:07 am

Honestly I do not know how it works or why. When the barley is sprouted I roll it in a barrel full of nails to "chaff" the hulls off. The barrel has been saturated with yeast/sugar water a few times per year. I assume the moist grain attracts the yeast while it rolls. The peat box is outside, and is really just a cold smoker for flavor because I never save or store any grain. It's pretty well broken up from the rolling but a quick run thru a crank meat grinder makes it more like "grits", and it cooks up almost on contact with warm water.
I do not really "mash" the barley but just stir it into the drum once the temp is down to 140 or slightly less, and keep stirring until it is 120*, and seal the barrel. (w/ vapor lock).
This is how my grandfather ran his rig, and it was the only method I ever new until I started reading all the science stuff you all know.

I've had the chance to try some of the home made stuff made by others down here, and in my opinion most all of it tastes like rocket fuel or rubbing alcohol.
In mine you can taste the barley, and smell the peat-moss as you swallow. I cut to 100 proof, and everyone that has tried it loves it.

I may need to be "put down" soon.
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Re: Fermented mash smells like vomit!

Postby skow69 » Sun Mar 09, 2014 2:15 pm

Yer killin me, Zombie.
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Re: Fermented mash smells like vomit!

Postby Zombie » Sun Mar 09, 2014 5:47 pm

Clean up on isle 8 please. Clean up on isle 8.

I do intend to try some of the methods you all use once I build my new column. I am thinking Sweet Potatoes for Vodka, and Wheat for Gin but I still want to keep mashing simple in some way.

I may need to be "put down" soon.
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Re: Fermented mash smells like vomit!

Postby tuner » Tue Oct 03, 2017 4:24 am

What a freaking TRAIN WRECK of biblical proportions! (butyric acid)
Did an All Grain this weekend -45% wheat -45% 2-row malted barley -10% malted rye. Boiled my water let it cool to 75 deg C put the water into the fermenter added in the grain bill (ferment on grain) final temp at 66 deg. One hour later dropped to about 64 deg added boiling water to bring it up to 66 Deg. Added Alpha Amylase. At 90 minutes did an iodine test – all is good. Put tight lid on the fermenter let it slowly cool down to 27 deg. Started US05 in Erlenmeyer flask – great looking starter. Pitched the starter at 27 deg. Next morning checked on the mash – VOMIT smell!!

What I did wrong:
• didn’t super clean the fermenter –with Saniclean – just a soap wash and rinse
• didn’t chill the wort ASAP
• should have boiled the wort after 90 mins for 60 minutes to kill the bugs
• wanted the enzymes to keep working on the grains
• wanted a bolder taste from fermenting on the grains
• should have not tried ferment on grain bill for this size of batch
• should have double Saniclean cleaned all vessels and tools
• not sure where the infection came from
• did a Corona clone the week-end before with no infections

What I’ve done now:
• pulled the wort off the grain
• put the wort back into the brewing kettle boiled it for 60 minutes
• not sure if I should try and salvage the batch or flush it about 80 Liters of juice
• everything still sinks like vomit! –room - brew pots and fermenter outside
• need to Saniclean today! –room - brew pots and fermenter
• will let boil wort again and do a nose test for the vomit smell
• SWMBO – not impressed with the train wreck smell
• Should have put more oxygen into the wort

I still have the smell in my nose, very sickening –still after a shower and a few good shots of RUM.

Any ideas –guys?

Cheers
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