- When we re-hydrated the yeast we did so in 2 cups of water, as opposed to one cup. I don't think this is a problem and one home brewer I spoke to did not think so either.
- A few times that we checked the temperature of the yeast water, we did so with a thermometer that had been washed, but not sanitized.
- During the chilling of the wort I stirred the wort some to cool it. Unfortunately, I dropped the spoon in the wort. I used my hands to grab the spoon out of the hot wort. I didn't get burned or anything, but the spoon handle and my hands could have contaminated the wort.
- When I cleaned the brew kettle I noticed a burned blackness in the center bottom of the kettle. The malt extract must not have been stirred-in well enough. That burning could cause off-flavors. A fellow brewer suggested warming the malt next time so that the syrup is not so thick.
Here is a thread from the HomeBrewTalk.com beginners forum that offers some comfort and perspective regarding brewing mishaps: What are some of the mistakes you made...where your beer still turned out great?