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Home Brew Forums > Home Brewing Beer > Extract Brewing > Barely off flavor???
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Old 10-22-2011, 07:46 AM   #1
ChadChaney
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Default Barely off flavor???

Ok, here is the deal, I have an odd, barely noticeable off flavor/aroma in a few of my brews. Here is some history/background that may help. I am a partial extract brewer, 5 gallon batches, steeping grains, good sanitation, know the processes, no odd happenings during brew day. In the last 6 months, I have brewed several batches and 2 have come out with a faintly odd aroma and really small taste oddity. I do not even know how to describe it, lol. The beers are good, color, flavor, head, lacing, and hydrometer readings on target. People that try them are super pleased, actually have people that want me to brew for them, but to me, I notice something that should not be there! The beers brewed are a kit of Raspberry wheat, and at bottling I split the batch and only added the Raspberry to half(for my wife) and a Rogue Brutal IPA kit.
My problem(s) is in describing the off aroma/taste. It is more prevalent in the wheat than the Brutal, but it is there still. Not buttery, not funky, just not sure what it is. I fermented both at about 70* stable. No starters, different yeast strains for both, and I am confused...
Both beers are free of floaties and age doesn't not help or hinder then aroma. The best way I can describe it is... I dont know, ugh, sharp maybe metallic or chemical like. Anyone have any ideas? One beer was bottled, one was kegged, same aroma, its the aroma more than taste, bye the way. It is driving me nuts! I just want to make better beer, any help appreciated!

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Old 10-22-2011, 03:22 PM   #2
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Sharp, metallic, chemical flavors could all have different sources. But they could easily all tie to more of a metallic flavor. Does it taste tinny or coin-like? If so, it could possibly be the result of poorly stored malts. More likely it would come from your brewing equipment. (Bottle caps can cause this as well, but one of your beers was kegged.) Your water could also be part of the problem. Does it have a high iron content? Or is it particularly alkaline, with a pH over 9? If the latter is true, and you are using an aluminum pot, you could be leaching very small amounts of metal into your beer.

What are you using as a sanitizer? If it is bleach or some other chlorine-based product, it can reach with phenols created by the yeast, creating chlorophenols (of course!), which can have a mediciny, band-aid like flavor. Be sure you are rinsing carefully, ideally with boiling hot water to reduce this.

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Old 10-27-2011, 06:48 PM   #3
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I think I have found the culprit! After racking a brew out of dry-hopping secondary and washing the bucket, I went to put it away today and noticed an odor in the bucket still. I thought, I know that smell, it;s the one in my beers! It is like a hop/cleaner aroma, finally nailed it, it is so distinct that I knew it the minute I smelled it! Smells like the soap I used did not get rid of all the hop aroma/resin/oil in the bucket and has a hint of soap to it. So I guess my dumb a** should be washing with something especially for brewing, duh..

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Old 10-27-2011, 06:51 PM   #4
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Also explains why the flavor came through in the wheat/rasp wheat since they are lightly hopped brews...

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Old 10-27-2011, 09:08 PM   #5
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That's why I always use PBW & star-san for everything. And every single time I clean the FV's,I also take out the spigots & clean them,the seal(s),& lock lug with PBW & Aquarium lift tube brushes. The smell goes away for me when I do that. So that's the area that is harboring the "old beer odor" as I think of it. Clean the spigot mounting hole as well. Nice clean fermenter smell after that.
I soak all my tubes in PBW as well,then rinse with tap water & hang over a chair to dry before storing. Gotta keep'em clean folks.
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Old 10-28-2011, 06:30 AM   #6
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Yeah, dumb, dumb mistake, I got so caught up in the recipe building, parts and equipment, etc, I forgot the most important thing, sanitation...Live and learn I guess. I have some B-brite on hand, will work as well as PBW?

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Old 10-28-2011, 03:14 PM   #7
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Imo,PBW is def better.
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Old 10-28-2011, 06:19 PM   #8
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Cool, I will definitely get some today!

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