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Home Brew Forums > Home Brewing Beer > Bottling/Kegging > keg hopping to salvage a beer?
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Old 03-14-2011, 01:01 AM   #1
Kidder
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Default keg hopping to salvage a beer?

Well, I think I finally got an infected or oxidized batch of beer. A few weeks ago I did the BYO Stone Pale Ale clone (AG). Fermented 2 weeks, then in the secondary for another week. I kegged it last week and tasted it this weekend and it just tastes stale and of cardboard. I don't think it's had enough time to show signs of oxidation though, right? I did create some bubbling when I racked to the keg but I didn't think it was that bad. The day that I racked to the keg I noticed small white patches on the surface of the beer in the carboy but shrugged it off.

At any rate, the beer is pretty much undrinkable regardless of what happened. Do you think "keg hopping" would make the beer a little more tolerable or should I not waste my hops? I have a ton of hops in the freezer...Citra, Cascase, Williamette, Amarillo, Columbus, etc. I'm really considering throwing in a half ounce.

Thoughts?

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Old 03-14-2011, 01:06 AM   #2
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I'm still a noob but I have heard of people mixing not so great batches with commercial beers to help them out and also heard of scooping out the mold or whatever on top (there is not any mold that will grow in a beer that will hurt you) and giving the yeast time to fight off the off flavors.

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Old 03-14-2011, 03:55 AM   #3
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I'll probably just dump the batch. I have a really good feeling it is an infection. When I was racking to the secondary, a piece of tape that was on the carpet just happened to attach itself to my hand. Without knowing it was on my hand, I switched hands to grab onto the autosiphon and the piece of tape dropped into the beer in the primary. I started to panic and quickly reached in and removed it from the surface.

If it is an infection I'm pretty sure it came from that tape. It had a good bit of pet hair on it and I follow proper sanitation practices. This will be the first in all of my batches. I'll give it some more time but I think it'll just get worse and worse. I bottled 7 bottles of it so it'll be interesting to see if they are infected as well. If not, then something happened during the kegging procedure. We'll see.

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Old 03-14-2011, 03:58 AM   #4
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I have done a lot worse than that with no infections. I would bottle it all or set the whole keg aside for a couple months. Worst that could happen is you dump it all later knowing it wasn't gonna turn out. What if those few bottles turn out great?

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Old 03-14-2011, 03:59 AM   #5
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I have no idea if you have an infection, but I brewed a Stone Pale Ale clone last year and it tasted like crap. I wound up dry hopping 5 gallons with Amarillo and 5 gallons with Citra. My wife likes it and others like it as well, I'd rather drink my other beers.

What I determined was that I don't like Athanum hops.

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Old 03-14-2011, 04:23 AM   #6
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Quote:
Originally Posted by samc View Post
I have no idea if you have an infection, but I brewed a Stone Pale Ale clone last year and it tasted like crap. I wound up dry hopping 5 gallons with Amarillo and 5 gallons with Citra. My wife likes it and others like it as well, I'd rather drink my other beers.

What I determined was that I don't like Athanum hops.
My LHBS didn't have Ahtanum hops at the time so I used Amarillo.

Maybe I will set it aside but I only have two kegs total so that only leaves me with one...unless I buy another one. I didn't spend a lot of money on the batch, so it's not a huge loss.
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Old 03-14-2011, 05:58 PM   #7
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I should also mention that the keg that it's in smelled bad prior to cleaning (shaking) with One Step. I forget if I sanitized it prior to storage. In hindsight, I should've scrubbed the heck out of it instead of just shaking the One Step solution in the keg. Maybe it's picking up off-flavors from the keg? I generally always scrub the inside of my kegs before racking but decided not to this time.

Should I rack it back into a carboy, in hopes that those off-flavors will dissipate?

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Old 03-14-2011, 07:36 PM   #8
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Amarillo instead of Athanum, I think you got lucky!

I'd certainly try moving it out of the keg, then do a better cleaning job on it and fill it with water and let it sit for a few days, then taste. If it tastes ok, you might want to carb up the water and taste to see if any off flavors are coming from the CO2 side.

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Old 03-15-2011, 02:23 AM   #9
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I racked it back to the carboy tonight and cleaned the heck out of the keg. There was some previous beer residue stuck to the inside of it. Possible source of infection right there. I cannot believe I didn't clean the keg. Shame on me I guess.

We'll see how better or, most likely, worse it's going to get from here on out.

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Old 03-24-2011, 04:41 AM   #10
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Well, I cracked open a bottle the other night and it tastes exactly like it did in the keg. Maybe I'll try dry hopping what's in the carboy, perhaps with a high alpha acid hop lika Citra or Columbus? It may make it tolerable to drink. What do I have to lose at this point?

Some good news though - I racked my Hop Rod Rye to the secondary tonight and it tastes absolutely amazing already. Just finished the dry hop additions. First time using a Better Bottle; so far I like it a lot, easy to clean and no worries of it slipping out of my arms while cleaning it. I also kegged the Blue Balls Belgian Wit tonight and it tastes great as well. No off-flavors with either of those beers. I'm set for the next month now.

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