New Giveaway - Wort Monster Conical Fermenter!

Home Brew Forums > Home Brewing Beer > General Beer Discussion > Dealing with bad beer...an experiment in not killing myself




Reply
 
LinkBack Thread Tools Display Modes
Old 06-06-2012, 07:53 PM   #1
runningweird
HBT_SUPPORTER.png
Feedback Score: 1 reviews
 
runningweird's Avatar
Recipes 
 
Join Date: Dec 2009
Location: State Line, PA, Pennsylvania
Posts: 2,084
Liked 85 Times on 62 Posts
Likes Given: 47

Default Dealing with bad beer...an experiment in not killing myself

So, I have had several batches - far more than I would like to admit - turn out badly. I mean undrinkable because of a bandaid like medicinal quality that kills any hop aroma or bitterness. These beers finish sweet even if they are at desired FG. These beers all taste the same - even when they are fermented at different temps or with different yeast. Even giant hop bombs that should be close to 100 IBU taste sweet and malty even with mash temps in the low 150 148 range.


I grind my grain in the garage - so I started doing so outside. Still not better.
I replaced all my fermenters and bleached the crap out of my fermentation freezer. still no fix.


I started trying to fix this by bleaching/vinegaring my carboys and replacing all plastic parts/hoses. I got a good batch here and there and continued to be frustrated. I thought it might be my plate chiller - I recirculate boiling wort through it for at least 15 minutes every boil and clean it out afterwards - I even started baking it. Still no 100% fix.



I am drinking a big double stout that turned out great, but in the tap next to it is a maibock that tastes like absolute sh^t. I have about a 30 percent success rate and this is simply unacceptable.

I was so convinced I had an infection- But I then started looking at my water.
I have a cistern which is usually full of nice clean rain water but at times is filled with water we get from the local water supplier - which happens to use chloramines. I believe that while my water tastes fine it is ruining my beer - and today I brewed a batch of Cascade Munich smash to prove that idea.

I added camden powder to my mash, sparge, and any water that touched my equipment. I starsan sprayed and covered in foam everything in my garage. The plate chiller was heated in the oven at 350 degrees earlier this morning and then had boiling wort recirculated through it for at least 30 minutes.

It is in the fermentation chamber now - I will give it a week and then if FG is there and everything has cleared out I will taste it and rack to keg. If it doesn't taste like problem beer I will rejoice and do my happy dance. If it doesn't work I will be buying some spring water and trying to brew at a friends house to see if the problem is environmental.


I make a lot of skeeter pee/lemon wine. I use the same fermentation vessels that I do for beer. I assume that if these batches are turning out fine that the chloramine in the water is interacting with the grain and making bad things happen.

I am slightly tipsy on this stout and am rambling so I will check back in when I keg/dump this batch



runningweird is offline
 
Reply With Quote Quick reply to this message
Old 06-06-2012, 08:06 PM   #2
eastoak
Senior Member
HBT_SUPPORTER.png
Feedback Score: 0 reviews
Recipes 
 
Join Date: Jan 2011
Location: oakland, california
Posts: 3,138
Liked 143 Times on 135 Posts
Likes Given: 79

Default

have you tried buying/making RO water? i use an RV filter i bought on amazon for $20 or so and it works great.



__________________
eastoak is offline
 
Reply With Quote Quick reply to this message
Old 06-06-2012, 08:37 PM   #3
runningweird
HBT_SUPPORTER.png
Feedback Score: 1 reviews
 
runningweird's Avatar
Recipes 
 
Join Date: Dec 2009
Location: State Line, PA, Pennsylvania
Posts: 2,084
Liked 85 Times on 62 Posts
Likes Given: 47

Default

Quote:
Originally Posted by eastoak View Post
have you tried buying/making RO water? i use an RV filter i bought on amazon for $20 or so and it works great.
My water supply is run through a uv filter and a carbon filter - I don't think that the cheaper filters are RO

I will be buying a full batch worth of RO water if this batch doesn't turn out properly.
runningweird is offline
 
Reply With Quote Quick reply to this message
Old 06-06-2012, 08:43 PM   #4
Jayhem
Feedback Score: 0 reviews
Recipes 
 
Join Date: Dec 2011
Location: Culpeper, VA
Posts: 2,538
Liked 247 Times on 199 Posts
Likes Given: 1128

Default

If it's not chemical contamination and it's not your process than your water is all that's left. Good luck! I have used nothing but my well water and so far I have not made a bad batch. :fingerscrossed:

__________________

Next up: The Hops of Wrath (DIPA)
Primary: Amber Rain (Dry Hopped Spring Amber Ale)
Secondary:
Bottle Conditioning: Spring '14 Kolsch, Swamp Monkey Belgian Golden Strong, Vienna Lager

Jayhem is offline
 
Reply With Quote Quick reply to this message
Old 06-06-2012, 08:43 PM   #5
neko
Feedback Score: 0 reviews
Recipes 
 
Join Date: Oct 2008
Location: Portland, OR
Posts: 572
Liked 18 Times on 16 Posts

Default

Quote:
Originally Posted by runningweird View Post
I have about a 30 percent success rate and this is simply unacceptable.

If it doesn't taste like problem beer I will rejoice and do my happy dance.
BUT...

What if this next batch is a "30 percent success" beer???
__________________

Ring ding dong. Ring a ding-ding-ding dong

"We have invented the world's largest laser system" -Ahnold

neko is offline
 
Reply With Quote Quick reply to this message
Old 06-06-2012, 08:49 PM   #6
tgreene7
HBT_LIFETIMESUPPORTER.png
Feedback Score: 0 reviews
 
tgreene7's Avatar
Recipes 
 
Join Date: Jun 2007
Posts: 91
Liked 5 Times on 4 Posts

Default

I had one batch of beer come out with a strong band aid flavor. I had used DME, i think it was due to a shortened boil time.

Never had the problem with LME, or All grain. All equipment was the same.

__________________
tgreene7 is offline
 
Reply With Quote Quick reply to this message
Old 06-06-2012, 09:39 PM   #7
runningweird
HBT_SUPPORTER.png
Feedback Score: 1 reviews
 
runningweird's Avatar
Recipes 
 
Join Date: Dec 2009
Location: State Line, PA, Pennsylvania
Posts: 2,084
Liked 85 Times on 62 Posts
Likes Given: 47

Default

Quote:
Originally Posted by neko View Post
BUT...

What if this next batch is a "30 percent success" beer???
Then I won't know will I?!

If it turns out well I will brew another when I keg it to see if the second batch turns out well.

if both are good I will conclude that i might have fixed the problem.
__________________

My 6 Tap Long Draw Tower Build:
http://www.homebrewtalk.com/f35/long-draw-salt-water-chilled-beer-tower-271578/

runningweird is offline
 
Reply With Quote Quick reply to this message
Old 06-06-2012, 10:15 PM   #8
Wynne-R
Feedback Score: 0 reviews
Recipes 
 
Join Date: Aug 2009
Location: Texas
Posts: 866
Liked 74 Times on 59 Posts
Likes Given: 72

Default

Get rid of the bleach. get some Star-San. Phenols usually come from chlorine.

__________________
Wynne-R is offline
 
Reply With Quote Quick reply to this message
Old 06-06-2012, 10:23 PM   #9
runningweird
HBT_SUPPORTER.png
Feedback Score: 1 reviews
 
runningweird's Avatar
Recipes 
 
Join Date: Dec 2009
Location: State Line, PA, Pennsylvania
Posts: 2,084
Liked 85 Times on 62 Posts
Likes Given: 47

Default

Quote:
Originally Posted by Wynne-R
Get rid of the bleach. get some Star-San. Phenols usually come from chlorine.
I use star san religiously. The bleached items were all rinsed with hot water and cleaned thoroughly after an oxyclean bath.

I might make an ro batch before the other one is done just to see what happens...
__________________

My 6 Tap Long Draw Tower Build:
http://www.homebrewtalk.com/f35/long-draw-salt-water-chilled-beer-tower-271578/

runningweird is offline
 
Reply With Quote Quick reply to this message
Old 06-06-2012, 10:28 PM   #10
Dan
HBT_SUPPORTER.png
Feedback Score: 0 reviews
 
Dan's Avatar
Recipes 
 
Join Date: Oct 2010
Location: Hanford, CA
Posts: 5,673
Liked 1682 Times on 1048 Posts
Likes Given: 2443

Default

Quote:
Originally Posted by Wynne-R View Post
Get rid of the bleach. get some Star-San. Phenols usually come from chlorine.
+1

Starsan is much simpler than bleach, no worries about rinsing it well enough like bleach.


From John Palmer's How to Brew

Quote:
Medicinal
These flavors are often described as mediciney, Band-Aid™ like, or can be spicy like cloves. The cause are various phenols which are initially produced by the yeast. Chlorophenols result from the reaction of chlorine-based sanitizers (bleach) with phenol compounds and have very low taste thresholds. Rinsing with boiled water after sanitizing is the best way to prevent these flavors.


__________________
Dan is offline
 
Reply With Quote Quick reply to this message
Reply


Quick Reply
Message:
Options
Thread Tools
Display Modes


Similar Threads
Thread Thread Starter Forum Replies Last Post
Starbucks to experiment with beer? fishkid General Beer Discussion 78 01-24-2012 11:49 PM
First True Beer Experiment!!!!!!!! kkocher13 General Beer Discussion 2 03-30-2011 02:10 PM
Is the 'best by' date killing the beer list concept? NorCalAngler General Beer Discussion 27 09-19-2010 11:19 PM
Is beer killing our planet? doctorRobert General Beer Discussion 40 07-20-2010 03:39 PM
Foam is killing my bottled beer! Bandulu General Beer Discussion 17 12-16-2008 03:29 PM



Newest Threads