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Old 08-10-2009, 02:09 AM   #1
chase
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Default Berliner weisse and DMS question.

I made a berliner weisse yesterday, using only a short boil and kind of an extended cool down (my IC was leaking so I tried to fix it). I'm worried about DMS.

I opened up the fermentor today to take a look, and it wreaks of cooked broccoli or some other vegetable. Is it possible that this stink is DMS or is it just the smell of a bad infection.

I used the "handful of grain" method to infect it, so god knows what all is living in there now.

Any thoughts? Should I be concerned?

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Old 08-10-2009, 03:15 AM   #2
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Eh just give it time. On my no boil BWeiss there is zero DMS, but the temps (outside of the decocted portions) never reach above 170F, so perhaps my beer is just full of SMM and none of the offensive DMS.

Using the handful of grain to infect it is going to give you results all over the board, so you are simply going to have to be patient and see.

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Old 08-14-2009, 01:22 PM   #3
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Due to the long cool down, that smell of cooked broccoli (yum!) is DMS. If your wort temp, during cooling, stays between 160 and 110 (I know that's not exact but close) for a prolonged period DMS will appear.

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Old 08-19-2009, 09:54 PM   #4
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That's too bad. I'm going to let it hang around for a while anyways and see what happens. It is starting to develop some sourness. Maybe it will help cover it up a little. Thanks.

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Old 08-23-2009, 08:16 AM   #5
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dms? smm? please?

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Old 08-23-2009, 10:41 AM   #6
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dms? smm? please?
How to Brew - By John Palmer - Common Off-Flavors
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Old 10-22-2009, 12:36 PM   #7
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I had some serious DMS-like aromas (skunky broccoli) initially on one of my BW as well. It was either an infection (enterobacter, zymomas, or something) or the yeast putting off some sulphur aromas. After a few weeks the fermentation has died down and I can't smell it anymore, so maybe everything is OK. I worry that it will pop up again with some carbonation. I've read DMS is very volatile, so I'm hoping it will evaporate with an extended time in the fermenter (eg. 2 months), and maybe some beano to thin out the beer (so the volatile components are more likely to escape), and maybe some fruit to cover it up.
Next time I'm using a different sacc yeast that doesn't produce sulphur, and I'm going to make sure the pH of my lacto starter is <3.8, where enterobacter is less likely to survive.

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Old 08-03-2010, 03:42 AM   #8
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For my first BW I used the no-boil technique, cooled to 90F within 15min, let the lacto take hold for two days before adding the yeast, etc etc. I got a *funky* smell coming out of the carboy as soon as the lacto started to bubble (before the yeast was added). I would describe it as smelling like a sea scallop that has been left in the garbage for a day. I left the beer in primary for a month and bottled, and it's plenty sour, but even five months later it has a noticeable level of that smell, and an associated weird off-flavor. I'd call it a toned-down version of the smell that was coming out of the fermenter. One guy said it smelled like baby wipes. I chalked it up to maybe stressing out the lacto (I split a vial of White Labs lacto between two carboys).

Which brings us to today. I have another no-boil BW going with the exact same aroma being thrown off. I upped my wheat percentage to 60% and lautered directly into my kettle with the immersion chiller going, so I would hope that any DMS is mitigated. I also made a 2L starter for my lacto about two weeks before brew date and again I gave it a 2-day head start. Am I doomed to the same fate as last time? Since the smell is being produced right after adding lacto, it must either be a byproduct of the lacto fermentation (but since they're healthy lacto I would expect to get this smell in commercial BWs, which I don't), or it must be something in the wort (probably DMS, although I imagine I'm chilling as quickly as anyone else out there).

Has anybody had similarly persistent problems with nasty DMS or lacto byproducts in their berliner weisses? Or anyone who initially had this nasty smell/taste and had it fade away during aging? I'm starting to feel like the whole no-boil crowd is just yanking my chain...

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Old 08-03-2010, 06:17 AM   #9
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I just bottled my Berliner Weisse 20 minutes ago. I did the short boil method. When I opened the fermenter to bottle it, all I could smell was sourness, so I assume that was a good thing. I'd given the lacto 36 hours head start, and the airlock was bubbling as vigorously as it does when I pitch a 2l starter. When I was finished I took the fermenter to the basement sink to clean it, and I thought some of our cans had exploded. It absolutely reeked of creamed corn. I had some left in the bottling bucket so I poured it into a glass and chilled it, and yep. It smells and tastes like DMS soup, and for some reason none of that sour aroma from the fermenter translated to sour taste to help cover it up.

I guess I'll keep it for a few weeks and see where it's at, but I'm pretty resigned to the idea of pouring it all out now. I don't have any idea how to fix that except doing a full length boil, which I'll do next time. Unless you're doing the no-boil/decoction method, I don't see a reason to not boil for 90 minutes and just hop it at 15.

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Old 09-17-2012, 07:05 PM   #10
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maybe try throwing some bottle dregs in it to see if some brett will improve it?

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