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Old 08-25-2011, 01:08 AM   #1
Dane
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Default Metallic/Astringent OFF flavors in all my batches, absolutely stumped, please help me

OK, I'm absolutely fed up with this ongoing problem I've been having. I've dumped over 30 gallons and cannot find the source. My latest dumpage was a wit that had the same taste. I can only describe it as a bit tart, minerally, maybe metallic, it's just off, here are my conclusions.

1. Bad co2 or co2 lines: It's a new batch of co2 so.. Checked my lines, all clean, regulator is clean, taps, etc. However I brewed a stout that came out fine on the same co2

2. Abbrasive scrubbing of the keggle. I don't this this is highly likely, I've always scrubbed it out and had great beer

3. Bad storage of my grain but this last batch was fresh ground from Northern Brewer

4. Overcarbing the brew, but this batch is on day one at 15 psi and has that taste

5. The local water: I have a nice filter that has worked great but I moved to a different part of town and used RO water last, same taste.

6. Forgetting to purge the O2 out of the tank: I forget to do this often but when I do it never results in a consistent foul taste. I've forgotten to purge on many beers that turned out fine

7. Bad beer lines: I switched them all out, same

I've boiled down this problem to two options. One is not regulating my PH mash and sparge water, I never have. The other is forgetting to purge giving the brew an off flavor.

I've noticed that this problem has only occurred on the lighter beers. It's been either my blonde's or wit's. The hoppier darker beers always turn out great.

Man I'm stumped can anyone offer other idea's? I know this is a long thread and lots to read but this problem is really really pissing me off, especially watching my beer go down the drain over and over.

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Old 08-25-2011, 01:36 AM   #2
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I think you need to start eliminating some of those possibilities. Start by figuring out which point in your system might be causing this. It looks like your not sure if its the kegging system or whether its occurring at some point in your brewing.
I would start by eliminating the kegging system by bottling your next batch and go from there.

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Old 08-25-2011, 01:56 AM   #3
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Well I've read that a slight metallic flavor can be noticed from oxidized beer. Astringency can come from over sparging and too high PH or too high of mash temps. Or mashing too long I use 5.2 and am happy. Some don't like or use it. Some say it causes salty beer. I tasted it. It is slightly, but even still a little salt in 5 gallons is negligible at best.

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Old 08-25-2011, 02:02 AM   #4
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Have you considered that you pitched your yeast and fermented at too high a temp?

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Old 08-25-2011, 02:13 AM   #5
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try a different kettle

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Old 08-25-2011, 03:12 AM   #6
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I climate control all my brews through a johnson control unit, it's not the typical hoof prints of bad fermentation. The kettle is a converted stainless keggle, I'm quite positive it is sound, even after abrasive scrubbing. It may be a combination of high mash temps( I have a RIMS system) and can jump up into the 156 on a 152 mash and I fly sparge at 170 for 60 everytime. Nonetheless, I have brewed dozens on my system, one placing silver, and I cannot figure it out.

Of course I can go with the eliminating problems by bottling a batch, pain in the ass and a shame when I have a dual tower kegerator but it may come down to this. Is it the process or the kegerator. I've never been this stumped and disappointed in my brew, sucks

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Old 08-25-2011, 03:21 AM   #7
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Quote:
Originally Posted by elpenoso View Post
I think you need to start eliminating some of those possibilities. Start by figuring out which point in your system might be causing this. It looks like your not sure if its the kegging system or whether its occurring at some point in your brewing.
I would start by eliminating the kegging system by bottling your next batch and go from there.
Good advice right here. Eliminating certain aspects will help you narrow down what it is you're looking for.
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Old 08-25-2011, 03:26 AM   #8
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How bout this? How much time before you are deciding this problem? There are so many variable,its wise to write down everything you do when making a batch,your whole process from cleaning to drinking.

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Old 08-25-2011, 03:28 AM   #9
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I think it has something to do with your water/PH and lighter kilned malts. You say that your dark beers come out great and only your lighter beers have the issue. If it was bad sanitation/fermentation practices I would think all your beers would have the problem. It must be really bad though because I can't imagine dumping 30 gallons unless it was nastiest, infected beer.

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Old 08-25-2011, 03:37 AM   #10
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Phunhog View Post
I think it has something to do with your water/PH and lighter kilned malts. You say that your dark beers come out great and only your lighter beers have the issue. If it was bad sanitation/fermentation practices I would think all your beers would have the problem. It must be really bad though because I can't imagine dumping 30 gallons unless it was nastiest, infected beer.
I am also leaning to this. Have you thought about doing an extract batch with your water? or even with spring water from the store? Maybe you could do 2 half batches - one with your water and one with Store bought. Do same recipe, yeast and ferm temp and see what happens.

You could get ph strips for your mash, or maybe a water report of you water? These are all pricey options, so maybe (if you already have the equipment) bottle the next batch like elpenoso suggested

At the Very least, take a LOT of notes. If you already are, double or triple it. Then start looking at the patterns. If it is water related there are TONS of variables - you didn't mention mash to grain ration (could affect ph) or how many total quarts/liters you are using per lb/kg of grain.

Hope this helps
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