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Old 06-15-2012, 06:19 PM   #1
progmac
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Default off flavors in dark beers

i've had many successful brews, but the couple of times i've made dark beers, they haven't come out right.

this last one was the newcastle clone in our recipe section.

i tasted it at bottling and it was delicious.

i tasted it last night (3 weeks) and it had the same off-flavor as a porter i made (the first beer i ever made - i chalked the problem up to inexperience at the time). the best way i can describe the flavor is that it makes the beer sharp. i suppose the off flavor would be astringency, although i'm not that good at labeling particular off-flavors.

with this beer i used 1099 whitbread. the other was nottingham. i noticed the whitbread fermented fast down to target FG but i still had a few floaties after 3 weeks but bottled anyways. this one was a partial mash with four pounds of grain. i mashed around 152, sparged around 170. the other was extract with steeping grains, steeped around 160 (hot). with my last, the off-flavor remained even after 6 weeks in the bottle.

so anyhow this exact same flavor i've only noticed in two beers i've made, and they were both dark beers.

i've looked into my water quality, and cincinnati's is actually quite good for brewing, both per Dan Listermann and based on the published data, which puts the pH right in the target range.

any thoughts?

oh, the good news is, i finally got a good cold break and have a nice clear beer. i didn't even use a wort chiller

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Old 06-15-2012, 06:25 PM   #2
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Despite the water report in your area, tap water is a main source of off flavors. I had the exact same issue with my tap water and my beers. Since switching to bottled water, the off flavors are gone. I made the same beer with different water sources and the tap water was considerably worse than the Poland Spring.

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Old 06-15-2012, 06:32 PM   #3
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Quote:
Originally Posted by sully20331 View Post
Despite the water report in your area, tap water is a main source of off flavors. I had the exact same issue with my tap water and my beers. Since switching to bottled water, the off flavors are gone. I made the same beer with different water sources and the tap water was considerably worse than the Poland Spring.
what kind of off-flavors and with what kind of beer?
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Old 06-15-2012, 06:42 PM   #4
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Two beers- a nut brown and an Irish stout. They had a bite to them... When I rebrewed and used bottled water the bite was gone and the brews turned out to be crowd favorites. In fact, my father had both and thought they were two totally different beers even though it was the same recipe.

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Old 06-15-2012, 08:14 PM   #5
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wow - so you also weren't having this issue with lighter beers? i might as well try it.

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Old 06-15-2012, 08:17 PM   #6
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Had the same issue with my pale ale and blonde ale. And rebrewed without tap- again solved the problem. Hope it is as much of an easy fix for you!

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