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Old 05-29-2012, 04:47 PM   #1
Jsbeckton
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Default What Happened to My Beer?!?!

Ok, a while back I had a nice clear APA kegged but I needed room in the freezer to force carbonate a few kegs of IPA. So I took the keg of APA, already carbonated, and disconnected it from the CO2 and put it in another freezer at serving temp to store while the IPA was carbonating. After 2 weeks I put the APA back in the original freezer, hooked it back up to the CO2, and drew a beer. Terrible!

The once crystal-clear beer was now cloudy, darker, and tasted terrible. The nice malt character was replaced by a sharp, somewhat astringent, fizzy taste. By this time the beer was about 3 months old or so but I have no idea how the beer went so bad so fast without leaving the keg? A friend said that it tasted oxidized and that was probably what happened. But this didn't really make sense because the keg was never opened.

In the end I dumped it and chalked it up to an freak mystery. Now this past weekend I had a keg of blonde ale that I had brewed with a friend about a month ago. To split the keg he said he used a jumper (I wasn't there, but I trust him) to push half from the original to his keg. After 2 days i went to draw a beer and it was the same thing. Cloudy, much darker, and with that odd taste.

At least this time there was a transfer so of course a possibility that it was oxygen, but given the similar result I wanted to make sure it was not something else.

Anybody ever have this happen? From what i have read the typical tell that it is oxygen is a cardboard taste which i really don't get. Does oxyginated beer also change color and become cloudy? Could this have really happened this fast?

FYI, I also tend to cut the CO2 and purge the relief valve a bit before drawing a beer to limit foam (I do have 6' lines). Not sure if this is a problem.

Any help wouldd be greatly appreciated, both times this has occured just when the beer was really starting to taste great so it's sucha shame to lose it.

Thanks,
Josh

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Old 05-29-2012, 04:53 PM   #2
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I don't keg and not really sure of the whole process but the taste you describe sounds like carbonic acid which is associated with over carbonation.

Perhaps the CO2 that was left in the keg when you disconnected and moved it over saturated the beer?

Just a thought....

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Old 05-29-2012, 05:05 PM   #3
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I don't know what happened to yours but I know my kid off gassed every one of my kegs.

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Old 05-29-2012, 05:20 PM   #4
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Sounds like the yeast sediment in the bottom of the keg was stirred up when the keg was moved. In my experience, even the slighted movement of a keg will cause this to happen. When it happens, it will take a day or three to clear and then all will be well again. I would have given it some more time to settle (unless you did, then never mind) before dumping that first batch. At any rate, let this batch settle for a spell and I think you'll find that it will be back to normal taste and color.

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Old 05-29-2012, 10:38 PM   #5
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I will try waiting a bit longer but it sat for 2 days before I tried it on Monday.

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Old 05-29-2012, 10:58 PM   #6
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It's stories like this that set me back a few steps from getting into kegging. I'd like the convenience of it but the additional cost of CO2, and the (what seems like) endless line of problems makes me wonder if it's really worth. it.

To the OP hope you figure out what happened, sorry I can't offer anything constructive.

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Old 05-29-2012, 11:12 PM   #7
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Quote:
Originally Posted by DoubleAught
It's stories like this that set me back a few steps from getting into kegging. I'd like the convenience of it but the additional cost of CO2, and the (what seems like) endless line of problems makes me wonder if it's really worth. it.

To the OP hope you figure out what happened, sorry I can't offer anything constructive.
A little off topic and not trying to high jack but I agree! Everyone talks about going to keg and then I read all these threads about all these problems and expenses and I just stick with bottling, it's cheap, I'm efficient at it and I've never had to dump a batch for any reason or any infection issues to contend with!
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Old 05-29-2012, 11:25 PM   #8
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+1 for yeast sediment getting stirred up. If I even bump a keg it stirs up some sediment and takes a few days to settle down. Then after a few days I have to pull a few pints to get it crystal clear again. It always does get better though. Just try not to move a keg unless you have to. Also, I have heard that if you rack to a secondary and fine with gelatin, you don't have this problem. I have never tried it but if you know in advance you are going to be moving a keg a bunch it may be worth trying.

duboman and Doubleaught,
I have been kegging for 3 years now and have never had to dump a batch. Once you know what you are doing there are really no problems. I have it down now to where I spend 1/3rd the time kegging that I did bottling let alone not having to worry about dealing with all the bottles. Plus, I know it is all mental but pulling a pint off a draft just seems like it tastes better than pouring a bottle. At least to me it does. If it is all in my mind oh well.

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Old 05-30-2012, 12:41 AM   #9
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One of the things I've learned from kegging is that it's really best to try to leave as much of the yeast behind in the fermenter as possible. There's always going to be some that settle out in the keg, but it helps to be as careful as possible when transferring and to not let the syphon get down into the trub. Although I don't do it, as rjsnau mentioned, a short secondary (or a cold crash) and some gelatin before transferring to the keg wouldn't be a bad idea.

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Old 05-30-2012, 02:16 AM   #10
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Quote:
Originally Posted by duboman View Post
A little off topic and not trying to high jack but I agree! Everyone talks about going to keg and then I read all these threads about all these problems and expenses and I just stick with bottling, it's cheap, I'm efficient at it and I've never had to dump a batch for any reason or any infection issues to contend with!
Interesting, as I decided to ditch bottling and start kegging about a year ago mainly because I had more than one batch become overcarbonated to the point that I lost more than 50% of each bottle to foaming. This after doing due diligence with online priming sugar calculators and spending hours carefully bottling each batch. Nah, kegging is great. Takes little time to properly clean and care for, with no risk of bottle bombs to boot. The only drawback I can see is there is a little bit of a learning curve. I lost a few pints worth over the first few batches doing things out of sequence. Let me tell you how fun it is to get beer in the face and clean all of your equipment a few different times. Oh well, it made me learn that much faster I guess!
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