Life is too short for mediocre beer. And if you're brewing ten gallon batches and get it badly wrong, that's a shedload of mediocre beer to get through.
I'm not sure when I last ditched a batch, but this particular beer was a disaster from start to finish. It started with the recipe. A good idea, badly executed.
The idea of a low gravity easy-drinker with a nice hop combo appealed, but the idea of pairing carahell malt with mild ale malt to create a bit more body than you might expect from a lightweight beer, was a bad one. The sickly sweet malts completely dominate this beer and the hops fail to punch their way through.
I overshot on the gravity too, so it wasn't the small beer I was hoping for and the combination of malts made for a much darker beer than the software predicted, so it wasn't as pale as anticipated either.
To add insult to injury, I also took the beer off the yeast too early. Pressure of work made me use a window of opportunity that was far too early, so there's some diacetyl to add into the mix too. Lovely.
So all in all, a pretty poor effort, both in design and execution. I'm ditching all the bottles and will make a decision on the other half of the batch (which is kegged) in the next couple of days. I'm pondering whether to chuck in a load of dry hops to the keg, to see if this makes it more a amenable brew.
Anyhow, I've brewed again since revisiting a recipe that won me a bronze at the National Homebrew Competition a few years back. I'm not sure why I've taken so long to re-brew this one, but at least I can be hopeful of some decent beer to drink in a few week's time.