Some of you may have noticed that bottles from our first bottled batch of Steelpan Island Stout (lot # SS-2009-19) were more carbonated than they should have been. While Steelpan should display a full body, and moderate carbonation, some bottles were fizzy, and in extreme cases beer seeped out of the bottle upon opening. We discovered that this was due to unintended bottle conditioning.
Bottle conditioning refers to a process where yeast combines with fermentable sugars to carbonate a beer naturally in the bottle. In addition to providing natural carbonation, bottle conditioning can also provide unique flavours, which continue to develop complexity over time. A common technique for homebrewers, Bottle conditioning is also used by craft brewers, especially those who specialize in Belgian-styled ales, wild beers or barrel-aged beers. Bottle conditioned beers also contain sediment at the base of bottles. This is a natural by-product of the conditioning process and is completely safe to consume.
As all our beers are unfiltered and unpasteurized, trace amounts of live yeast may remain in the package, and limited bottle conditioning may occur when these yeasts are combined with the beer’s residual fermentable sugar. In the case of Steelpan Stout however, excessive amounts of yeast and fermentable sugars were present in the final product, leading to a larger than acceptable level of bottle conditioning, altering the carbonation level, and ultimately the intended flavour and mouthfeel of the beer.
Therefore, while the beer was safe to consume, it did not adhere to our standards, or represent the product which we intended to release to market. As a result, we decided to undertake a voluntary replacement of all Steelpan Stout bottles on trade featuring lot # SS-2009-19 and best before date 17/02/21. As of 12/1/20, all retailers are stocked only with a new batch, lot # SS-2010-25, best before date 23/3/21.
We have since adjusted our conditioning processes to ensure that as little live yeast as possible will make it into the final package. We will also introduce additional quality testing and increased checks before products are packaged to ensure this does not happen again. We stay committed to producing unfiltered and unpasteurized craft beers, and ensuring the best experience for you, our customers.
While all stock on trade has already been exchanged, we do know they may have some fans who would have already purchased bottles from this lot and may still be in possession of them. If you are in possession of any of these Steelpan Stout bottles, please contact us and we will replace them for you!
If you have any questions or would like to make arrangements to replace your bottles, please contact us at firstname.lastname@example.org or email@example.com
Thank you for your understanding and continued support!