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Old 05-04-2012, 05:34 AM   #1
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Default Metallic taste from keg

I think I have a keg issue. I brewed an IPA and put it's been in the keg about 10 days. The first couple of days, the beer was GREAT, I was really excited to have 5 gallons of it, now I'm afraid something with my keg/CO2 has ruined my batch.

The flavor is very metallic and leaves the tongue very dry. But this only occurred within the last few days, so I know it isn't an issue in my brew day process.

Some people say carbonic acid will cause this, but I left a glass out and swirled it around until I got a lot of the CO2 out, and the metallic dryness was still there.

I had read someone mentioned they got this flavor when they were nearing the end of their CO2 bottle, and mine is about empty. I have a hard time understanding how that could be a cause though.

Maybe there is rust in my keg? Anyone else have a great beer turn metallic in their keg?

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Old 05-04-2012, 02:22 PM   #2
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This is almost always due to over carbonation.

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Old 05-04-2012, 03:21 PM   #3
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Originally Posted by thargrav View Post
This is almost always due to over carbonation.
will it also leave that dryness on the tongue?
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Old 05-04-2012, 06:51 PM   #4
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I poured a glass and let it sit for nearly 3 hours so the carbonation would come out of solution. It still has an unpleasant bitterness that leaves a dryness on the tongue that wasn't there the first few days in the keg.

Any other things that could cause this?

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Old 05-04-2012, 09:22 PM   #5
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I've gotten that with newly carbed kegs and also with particular yeasts-- I loved Notty for awhile until I noticed persistent bite that disagreed with my palette

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Old 05-04-2012, 09:41 PM   #6
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I've gotten that with newly carbed kegs and also with particular yeasts-- I loved Notty for awhile until I noticed persistent bite that disagreed with my palette
It was really good the first couple days in the keg, when it wasn't fully carbed yet. Fermentation was good, 1056 with a starter on a stirplate. Bummed that it went south so fast in the keg. I have had several bad kegged batches lately and my last brew I bottled is really good.
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Old 05-04-2012, 09:54 PM   #7
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Quote:
Originally Posted by jbsg02 View Post
I poured a glass and let it sit for nearly 3 hours so the carbonation would come out of solution. It still has an unpleasant bitterness that leaves a dryness on the tongue that wasn't there the first few days in the keg.

Any other things that could cause this?
Trouble is that what you might be tasting isn't CO2 (which would all come out of solution), but dissolved H2CO3. Its the H2CO3 (carbonic acid) that can give it the bitterness flavor. Given enough time all that H2CO3 will convert back to water and CO2, but its possible that just because all of the bubbles are gone, doesn't mean the carbonic acid is.

All of this isn't to say that there might not be something else wrong. But, if I'm looking for the simplest explanation (and also as it turns out the simplest solution), I'd have to guess its just a carbonation thing. Give it a week or two to equilibriate everything, then try it again and see if its still tasting off. On a similar topic, I didn't see if you'd mentioned how you carbed this. Did you do the set-and-forget, or shaking method?
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Old 05-04-2012, 10:01 PM   #8
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Originally Posted by erikpete18 View Post
Trouble is that what you might be tasting isn't CO2 (which would all come out of solution), but dissolved H2CO3. Its the H2CO3 (carbonic acid) that can give it the bitterness flavor. Given enough time all that H2CO3 will convert back to water and CO2, but its possible that just because all of the bubbles are gone, doesn't mean the carbonic acid is.

All of this isn't to say that there might not be something else wrong. But, if I'm looking for the simplest explanation (and also as it turns out the simplest solution), I'd have to guess its just a carbonation thing. Give it a week or two to equilibriate everything, then try it again and see if its still tasting off. On a similar topic, I didn't see if you'd mentioned how you carbed this. Did you do the set-and-forget, or shaking method?
I did some light swirling when I first put it on gas, nothing vigorous. Had it at 30 psi for the first day then released gas and hooked it back up at 10 psi.

Interesting to hear your carbonic acid theory, I will give it some more time. Is this something common with force carbing?
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Old 05-04-2012, 10:07 PM   #9
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It doesn't sound like its overcarbed, but it should balance out over time. I think the carbonic acid also reacts with other stuff in the beer at first, giving it some of those flavors. I know my first keg or two I was "sampling" and "checking for carb levels" right after I put it on gas and noticed a distinct bite. I can't say that it was carbonic acid or yeast in solution, but anymore I give it a good 3 weeks at serving pressure before I try any, and haven't had the problem since.

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Old 05-04-2012, 10:10 PM   #10
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Some of my early beers that were lighter styles had a slight metallic taste which ended up being the unfiltered well water I was brewing with. I switched to filtered water and the flavor vanished.

[edit] I have also noticed a slight metallic quality when I use Amarillo hops as a flavor addition. I like it for dry hopping, but not so much for flavoring. I've only noticed it with Amarillo.

But yeah, you're probably tasting carbonic acid. Some people are sensitive to it.

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