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Old 09-23-2009, 11:09 PM   #1
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Default Can I save my ESB from WY1968?

Hello all,
I've been brewing awhile, but I'm new to the forum, so any help you can give me would be great.

I have tried brewing two ESBs, both using Wyeast 1968. The first was a partial mash recipe, and it turned out kinda gross. At the time I blamed it on the LME.

Fast forward many delicious ales. Now I now better. Several weeks ago, I brewed an all-grain ESB, deciding to try again, and I pitched some 1968. I live in an apartment, so I kept the fermenter cool using the tshirt/water bath method to ward off some of the diacetyl that may have killed my first ESB. The yeast was still very active, attenuation was on the high side according to my calculations, but after resting in a secondary for a couple of weeks, the flat beer tasted nice so I primed (dextrose) and bottled it. Now, about six weeks after bottling, it has that same funny taste, which I assume is diacetyl. I think it's kind of a sweet, funky flavor, not necessarilly "buttery," but maybe--I'm not an expert on this flavor, as none of my other beers have had it (save the other esb).

I did not keep the bottles extra cool, so I may have gone wrong there. My apartment stays around 75-78 F during the day in the summer. Is there anything I can do to save the flavor of this beer? Do you guys think that taste is diacetyl? Should I just skip making anything else with 1968 until I have a basement/large cooling system?

Thanks for any advice!
DF

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Old 09-24-2009, 02:13 AM   #2
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Now, about six weeks after bottling, it has that same funny taste, which I assume is diacetyl. I think it's kind of a sweet, funky flavor, not necessarilly "buttery," but maybe--I'm not an expert on this flavor, as none of my other beers have had it (save the other esb).

I did not keep the bottles extra cool, so I may have gone wrong there. My apartment stays around 75-78 F during the day in the summer. Is there anything I can do to save the flavor of this beer? Do you guys think that taste is diacetyl? Should I just skip making anything else with 1968 until I have a basement/large cooling system?
1968 works fine for me at 65*F. This yeast strain can get pretty estery, I am wondering if you were still too warm and you just have too many esters and that is what you don't like. It does produce some diacetyl, but as long as you don't rack to secondary too early (it likes 2 weeks in primary) or ferment too cool diacetyl is unlikely to be a big problem. Priming 75-80 is not a problem.

See my cooling system in my sig...
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Old 09-24-2009, 03:45 PM   #3
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Possibly estery, but it's not really fruity or banana-y. The strange thing was I did try it before I bottled, and it was tasty. Maybe I should have just enjoyed it flat

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Old 09-24-2009, 06:18 PM   #4
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Some of the English strains I find the esters are mineral-like and can be harsh or metallic tasting to me at excess levels. As you said diacetyl is buttery, that doesn't sound like your issue to me... but without tasting your beer I can't be sure.

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Old 09-25-2009, 05:23 AM   #5
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I think you may be right... harsh/metallic is a pretty good description, but it's not one that I would have thought of myself. I guess I need to get better control over the temperature before I go try this again.

Is there a food or something that might complement a highly-ester-y beer? What about another suggestion about how to still enjoy the other 4 3/4 gal?

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Old 09-25-2009, 05:26 AM   #6
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Which of the other English yeasts might be good to try for a bitter that may be fermented on the higher end and not have as much off flavor?

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Old 09-25-2009, 05:41 AM   #7
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Fermentis S04 - try to brew in the cooler months and stockpile until you can control your temps.

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Old 09-25-2009, 06:39 AM   #8
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WLP023 Burton Ale. I use the same cooling methods as you and have similar interior apartment conditions (though I also use ice packs int he water and you didn't mention that). The bottle aging temp shouldn't matter as long as it's not super high. I have mine at room temp.

The Burton Ale has made me a nice ESB and Irish Red, and though it IS estery, it's not over the top IMO. Definitely not the taste you are describing.

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Old 11-16-2009, 11:58 PM   #9
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Default 1028?

How about WY1028 London Ale? Would there be any advantage, ester-production-wise, to switching to it?

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Old 11-17-2009, 12:13 AM   #10
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The London Ale is awesome..... ferments in 48-72 hours. Beer is crystal clear in like a week. Got a batch of winter warmer in bottles now.

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