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Home Brew Forums > Home Brewing Beer > General Beer Discussion > Camphor taste
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Old 09-14-2009, 05:59 PM   #1
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Default Camphor taste

We brewed the extract version of http://www.homebrewtalk.com/f66/cent...10-gall-42841/ on 8/9. It is a 10 gal. batch with 5 gal. in primary for 1 week and in secondary for 2 weeks. The other 5 gal. had 3 weeks in primary only. I wanted to see if secondary made any difference. Hit the target OG and FG. Bottled all of it 2 weeks ago and thought we would see how it was coming along. Bottles from both fermenters have a stong camphor taste. Very unpleasant. I know this is still green but I also have read that this beer is supposed to be drinkable in a shorter time.

So, what would cause this taste and will it clear up with more time?

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Old 09-14-2009, 06:47 PM   #2
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Did you use DME, or LME?

If it were LME, was it fresh?

More than likely it just needs longer conditioning, however, there is always a possibility of older LME causing off-flavors.

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Old 09-14-2009, 07:04 PM   #3
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I used DME from the LHBS.

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Old 09-16-2009, 09:35 PM   #4
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So nobody knows how this taste could develop? I have searched for "camphor" and had no result. This is my 9th batch and all have been brewed and fermented in the same basic way, same water, place and environment. Once I tasted it, I had my son-in-law taste it without telling him it had any kind of off flavor. He said it tasted like Campho-Phenique coldsore medicine which is what I thought also.

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Old 09-16-2009, 09:51 PM   #5
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I've noticed that taste in some beers too. I'm told that it comes from using bleach to clean your equipment and not rinsing well enough, but I sort of think it might have something to do with reusing old yeast.

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Old 09-16-2009, 10:00 PM   #6
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Don't use bleach and I have yet to re-use yeast.

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Old 09-17-2009, 01:13 AM   #7
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Sounds like a possiblity of chlorinated water, or high fermentation temperatures, or both.

Using water with chlorine or chloramines (which doesn't boil off) can cause medicinal "band aid" flavors. so can some yeast fermented at a too-high temperature.

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Old 10-26-2009, 10:24 PM   #8
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Sooooo ..... here is another example of "never dump your beer!". I have let this sit for 5 more weeks and tried one last night. Much better now. The camphor taste is gone but there is still a very slight bandaid taste. But not so bad that I didn't finish the glass. I will let this sit for some more time and see how it does.

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