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Old 04-08-2011, 10:40 PM   #1
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Default 5 weeks in the primary, still has a "green apple" smell

So I'm making an English ESB, using Safbrew S-33 yeast. Everything so far has gone well, but it has been in the primary for 5 weeks and it still has a rather strong "green apple" smell, which I think means it has Acetaldehyde and the beer still needs time to condition.

I'm willing to wait, but I'm getting worried about the amount of time it is spending in the primary. Should I transfer to secondary and wait it out there? Should I bottle and age it out in the bottles? Or should I just leave it in the primary until I don't smell the green apple anymore?

I did leave my lid on loose for this beer instead of tightening it all the way down, at least for the first couple of weeks. I did this because I heard it aids in removing CO2 during fermentation. I didn't think it would be a problem because I had heard of the CO2 "blanket" that protects the beer from the oxygen.

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Old 04-08-2011, 10:43 PM   #2
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You just need to get it into the bottles, so it can carb and bottle condition.

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Old 04-08-2011, 10:50 PM   #3
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I've dealt with this twice. Once, I had to dump the batch. I bottled and it was still nasty a month later. Dumpola. Maybe it would have recovered, but I'm not getting any younger so I'm not waiting.

Second time was a barleywine. I think it has finally, after 2 years, lost most of that green apple.

What I would do if I had this happen again is grow a big yeast starter, then add it to the beer, along with a pound of DME. Acetaldehyde is an intermediate alcohol that should get cleaned up by the yeast. No idea why this doesn't happen sometimes, but I'm throwing more good yeast at it next time.

Revvy might be right, don't want to argue there, but in my experience bottle conditioning didn't help (much).

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Old 04-25-2011, 11:08 PM   #4
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Alright, I have an update. I didn't mention this in the original post, but there are actually 2 batches that are green applefied. One is the ESB, the other is an Arrogant Bastard clone. I've given them a few weeks more in the fermenter to see if they would clean up (they didn't). I bottled up the Arrogant Bastard like I normally would, and tonight I'm going to transfer the ESB and give it a pound of DME and some S-04 yeast. I'll follow up and let everyone know what worked and what didn't. Should be enlightening, even if nothing works.

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Old 04-26-2011, 01:06 AM   #5
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Isn't green apple caused by high fermentation temps and can't really be "aged" out.

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