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Old 07-28-2012, 07:21 AM   #1
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Default Rotten smell dunkelweizen

I brewed dunkelweizen and it got some strange rotten smell.

Recipe:

Batch Size (fermenter): 37,00 l
Estimated OG: 1,056 SG
Estimated Color: 48,3 EBC
Estimated IBU: 32,6 IBUs
Boil Time: 60 Minutes

Ingredients:
------------
Amt Name Type # %/IBU
4,60 kg Pilsner (2 Row) Ger (3,5 EBC) Grain 1 51,7 %
3,70 kg Wheat Malt, Ger (4,5 EBC) Grain 2 41,6 %
0,60 kg Chocolate Malt (886,5 EBC) Grain 5 6,7 %
100,00 g Styrian Goldings [4,50 %] - First Wort 6 Hop 3 32,6 IBUs
1,0 pkg Hefeweizen Ale (White Labs #WLP300)


Mash Schedule: Decoction Mash, Single
Total Grain Weight: 8,90 kg
----------------------------

Beta amilase rest - 62,0 C - 30 min
Alpha amilase rest - Decoct 10,24 l of mash and boil it - 72,0 C - 45 min
Mash Out- 77,0 C

Sparge: Drain mash tun, Batch sparge with 1 steps (25,09l) of 77,0 C water
------------

It fermented at 64F first 10 days, after that I increased temperature to 70F for 2 days and crash it to 50F 2 days prior to bottling.

I tasted it at bottling day and smell was so notable that I couldnt drink even small sample.

Now, after 3 weeks in bottles that smell is decreased but it is still there. Taste is ok, somewhat undefined but I can assign that to short maturation time, there is little of rotten after taste but almost inappreciable, so it is drinkable.

I"ve never had similar smell in my beer and I really don't know what could be reason for that, but I really want to detect possible cause of it.

Possible reasons are:
- infected starter- I stepped it in 3 steps so it is possible that I picked up some bacteria in between (even I watch for disinfect environment when working with yeast).
- pH of mash was 6.0- my tap water is hard and for this recipe I didn't make anything to manage it.
- slow cooling time- I had some problems with my water supply and it took almost 90 minutes to cool the wort.

According to these reasons, it is possible to have some tannins (high pH) and DMS (infection, slow cooling time, pilsner malt boiled for 60 minutes even I always boil it for 60 mins and never have problems..).
I suppose smell it is not from tannins, but it can be from DMS..

Any opinion is highly appreciative.

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Old 07-28-2012, 05:01 PM   #2
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DMS will produce a sulfur like, rotten corn like smell especially with your grain bill and is very difficult to get rid of, it may age out over time, it may not. I would put the bottles somewhere and forget about them for a month or two and then try one

The best way to eliminate it is by a very vigorous boil and preferably 90 minutes.

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Old 07-29-2012, 08:40 AM   #3
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Thanks.
I used to boil pislner 60 minutes before without getting this smell. Maybe it is result of short boil and long cooling this time...
I noticed that smell is slowly vanishing, I"ll leave them in fridge for month or so and try it again.

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Old 07-29-2012, 12:40 PM   #4
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The very high pH isn't good, but it wouldn't give you "rotten" smell, it would be more astringency and puckering on the finish as well as harsh.

Often a rotten type of smell is yeast health related, like autolysis. If it's getting better, though, it probably isn't that so that's a good thing.

DMS is pretty distinctive- have you ever had Rolling Rock beer? That's DMS in a bottle. It doesn't usually get better, either.

Sorry I wasn't much help.

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Old 07-29-2012, 12:57 PM   #5
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Do you boil with your kettle covered (eg by a lid) in order to retain heat?

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Old 07-29-2012, 01:59 PM   #6
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You used hefe weizen yeast. I don't know much about the specific yeast you used but my hefeweizen yeast (wyeast weihenstephan) was a huge sulfur producer. Like rotten eggs, but mixed with the clove and bananna esters it really stunk like sh!t the sulfur dissapated and turned out really great

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Old 07-29-2012, 04:34 PM   #7
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I had the same problem with a saison I brewed a couple of months ago. I do PM, and I did a 90-min steep/mash instead of a 90min boil. It's getting better - we brewed in May, bottled in June. It was unbearable when we bottled it, but now it's nearing drinkable.

Given that, DMS seems like it might be a culprit.

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Old 07-30-2012, 04:23 PM   #8
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Lid was off all the time. I can get good rolling boil and I maintain it for 60 mins. Never had this smell in kolsch with similar grain bill (even more plisner malt) and 60 mins boil.

I suppose rotten smell got something with interaction of yeast strain and slow cooling time.

Slow cooling time can increase forming of DMS, but it should be scrubbed out during fermentation. Since I used WLP300 from my frozen yeast bank there could be lower number of cells than I supposed (25% viability), so even with stepping I ended with large under pitching (probably more than suggested under pitching for hefe).
If there was smaller yeast amount, fermentation wasn't vigorous as it supposed to be, so DMS couldn't be scrubbed out and I ended with some of it in bottles... indicator to low pitching can be high-side FG- 1.018 which I referred to decoction and long alpha amylase rest so more unfermentable sugars are created...

As said, hefe yeast produce huge amount of sulfur which mixed with present DMS can be reason of rotten smell..

I know that I am probably over concluding with DMS, but that is tickling me since I brewed hefe with same yeast and fermentation temps and none of them had similar smell..

It is not problem if I have to dump this batch (which I wont since I got patience to wait), but I really want to know what caused this flavor.. process, ingredient, interaction of both... this is why competitions are great, if I had them in my country I would probably get few bottles and take them to competition with one question- what is the reason??

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Old 08-21-2012, 05:56 AM   #9
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Just to make notice on this, maybe someone will find it helpful.. after almost 1 month in fridge rotten egg smell is disappearing away.
Now it is hard to tell there was any, and dunkelweizen is turning into real star.
I suppose wpl300 with possible DMS formation was main reason of sulfur smell.

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Old 08-21-2012, 12:18 PM   #10
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Quote:
Originally Posted by diS View Post
Just to make notice on this, maybe someone will find it helpful.. after almost 1 month in fridge rotten egg smell is disappearing away.
Now it is hard to tell there was any, and dunkelweizen is turning into real star.
I suppose wpl300 with possible DMS formation was main reason of sulfur smell.
Glad to hear things are improved! Since the smell is essentially gone I would dismiss DMS and contribute it to the poor yeast health and long cooling time since DMS very rarely will ever go away completely and it will linger with more of a taste then a smell.
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