Thursday, January 30, 2003

Dear God, what have I wrought?

I bottled the Sahti this evening, and I'm worried as anything. I have yet to taste it, because I'm chilling one of the bottles. Why chill before tasting?

It smelled absolutely vile.

Not bacterially vile, but something more sinister. Musty, acrid, back-of-the-throat recoil kind of smell. This doesn't strike me as any sort of infection problem, because the wort went straight from the boil-pot, freshly cooled, to the fermenter, which was just as meticulously sanitized as it's ever been. It's only been five days since the fermenter was sealed; that's hardly enough time for a serious infection; heck, the yeast even behaved normally. The color is even right - see the bottle at left in this picture.

I'm worried I did it all correctly. This might be how it's supposed to smell. There could be any number of explanations if I did mess it up... Far too much juniper, perhaps, or some truly weird yeast...

I'm scared to try it, to be honest. I did take extra care to grab one of the non-toxic varieties of juniper...