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Old 08-16-2012, 05:57 PM   #61
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Stop. You're getting to the point of harassment.

This is a forum for discussion, not for inquisitions. Either post to be helpful, or walk away. Thanks!
Yikes! Sorry!
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Old 08-16-2012, 06:10 PM   #62
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Yikes! Sorry!


It is all good man. I definitely want to track down the cause of off-taste and this thread has given me a few things that I know I can watch more closely...notably... using a yeast starter, lower pitch temps, and lower fermentation temps.
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Old 08-16-2012, 06:15 PM   #63
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It is all good man. I definitely want to track down the cause of off-taste and this thread has given me a few things that I know I can watch more closely...notably... using a yeast starter, lower pitch temps, and lower fermentation temps.
Those are good starts, though you don't need a starter with dry yeast.

I apologize if I missed it, but have you been able to isolate the flavor in a certain type of beer?

Like, are your porters fine but your pales aren't?

That could help isolate whether it's ingredients, process, or water.
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Old 08-16-2012, 06:21 PM   #64
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SWMBO and I have been running into the same sort if vague "off" taste in our brews. We were thinking maybe it had to do with the priming sugar, but thanks to this thread and some more digging around over the last couple of days, we've zeroed in on our fermentation temps. Our past brews were fermented at room temps upwards of 75 degrees, which was totally okay according to the kits/recipes, but apparently not so good (and the kits used Nottingham, which Yooper specifically pointed out as terrible at those temps).

Our Mocktoberfest, which is two-and-a-half weeks in the primary, is in the basement at 68-70, so hopefully that'll have less of the "off" taste. I'm going to take a swig of it before we prime/bottle, so that should tell us whether the off flavors are introduced before or after it hits the bottle (and, if there aren't any off flavors, or they're less pronounced, then the temps are likely the culprit).

Either way, I'll be picking up a bin to make a swamp cooler this afternoon. Worst case, I'll have a $10 bin in which to store all my homebrewing stuff.

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Old 08-16-2012, 06:23 PM   #65
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Those are good starts, though you don't need a starter with dry yeast.

I apologize if I missed it, but have you been able to isolate the flavor in a certain type of beer?

Like, are your porters fine but your pales aren't?

That could help isolate whether it's ingredients, process, or water.
Well, it really seems like in the beginning most all my beers had this off-taste. 7 years later, I really only notice it here and there and the only beer I have right now (or had, I finished off last night) that I noticed it in is my Rye Pale Ale. But it seemed to be more noticeable the longer I had that beer and as some of the hop characteristic wore off.

Like others have said, It might not exist in my other beers or just be hidden by hop or fruit additions. I have a few other older beers bottled I could open to see if I notice it there. Although I doubt I would notice it in my Quad... but would be a good excuse to open one of those jewels.
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Old 08-16-2012, 07:52 PM   #66
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When to pitch yeast is very yeast specific as well as the temperature to ferment it at.

You mentioned it grows as it sits in the keg. Do you have a brush to clean the dip tube in the keg? I have read stories where people get odd tastes in some of their beers. They were able to trace it to a particular keg and found a dirty dip tube. It's an important step to do in cleaning your keg. Only take a couple of minutes to remove the liquid out port and clean it with the brush that will cost around 6.00 or so.

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Old 08-16-2012, 08:09 PM   #67
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My 2 cents: Clean your beer lines. You said you use Star-San on them but that only sanitizes. Run beer line cleaner through the lines. Disassemble and soak/clean the faucets and the disconnects. If you need to, you can change out the beer line relatively cheaply.

All of the other advice will help you brew better beer, too, of course.

L

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Old 08-16-2012, 08:21 PM   #68
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A proper identification of the taste, is a very important step to correct it. Getting it judged can really point you in the direction of the cause, then correction better than most anything else that has been suggested... most of the answers are really basic steps to getting better beers, but really just stabs in the dark to the cause.



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Stop. You're getting to the point of harassment.

This is a forum for discussion, not for inquisitions. Either post to be helpful, or walk away. Thanks!
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Old 08-16-2012, 08:32 PM   #69
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your "homebrew taste" could be from your water, the common base ingredient, or your yeast if you always use the same strain. If you always use dry nottingham or us05, buy a liquid culture and give it a try and try a different brand of extract. But since the problem gets worse its probably an infection. If you are topping up with unboiled tap water, that could easily be the source of the contamination. Give full boil a try if you have the equipment (you will need it for all grain), or preboil your top up water the day before. You could try bottling a few pints and store them warm and see how much worse the problem gets. Maybe you have a serious infection somewhere in your line or kegs and the refridgeration is suppressing it to some extent. All grain is super fun and I can't believe you've been brewing 7 years and haven't been tempted to give it a go yet ...so do it if it interests you...but....it probably won't eliminate your problems but rather add a bunch of new ones.

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Old 08-16-2012, 11:28 PM   #70
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I wouldn't make that assumption. In fact, I would suggest if he's making bad beer with extract, he will make REALLY bad beer with AG. The AG process complicates things tremendously. I brewed extract for 20 years before going AG in the Spring of 2011. I was making consistently awesome brews in my opinion with extract. Only switched to AG to add more excitement to my brewing. My advice is for him to fix his "homebrew" taste problem (whatever that mean) before switching to AG.

I'm not saying or assuming that Mikey_Dawg is making good or bad beer. My point was, and is, that simply because one is an extract brewer those beers do not have to have a "homebrew" taste and that high quality extract beer can in fact not only be very good with no unusual flavors or defects that would immediately label them as homebrew. My advice was actually the same as yours. Without identifying the taste and its source simply switching from extract to AG would likely not solve the problem. On the other hand I would not make the assumption you did with the blanket statement that AG brewing "complicates things tremendously". I'd like to know your reasons for reaching that conclusion. IMO while the AG process does add the time, effort and the additional science of mashing to the equation the positive side benefits of a full boil combined with mechanical wort chilling eliminate some of the potential problems encountered from extract brewing; such as the color & flavors tied to a partial boil, the less-than-ideal chilling methods often used and the addition of untreated, unboiled top-off water to the concentrated wort.
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