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Old 04-11-2013, 09:46 PM   #1
Acyr90
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Default All my batches have a sharp 'bite' to them

The best way to describe it is a little acidic tasting. I've done 2 batches now and they both have that same sharp characteristic to it.

Both extract kits, both dry yeast. First time I fermented too hot, 70-75. 2nd time I watched it more carefully and kept it around 65 degrees. My first thought was too hot of fermentation, but the 2nd batch has the same ill effects and was properly controlled.

2.5 weeks primary, 3 weeks bottled. Most recent one was fridged for 5 days and the first one has been in the fridge for weeks and it still has the bite to it.

I looked up my tap water company and they use chlorine, not chloramine, so it should boil out and not effect the flavor. If anyone understands what I'm talking about with this 'bite' and could offer some insight on what it could be that would be great.

Edit: when I say extract I mean the kits with malt extract, steeping grains, and hops to boil. Not the canned hopped malt extract ones.

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Old 04-11-2013, 10:20 PM   #2
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If it helps I looked up the two yeasts I used. The first one was a left over Mr Beer dry ale yeast (Bought some extract and messed around with my own recipe in a 2 gal batch) and the 2nd was the Muton's dry yeast that came with my Midwest Irish red extract kit. After looking up these yeasts, they both seem crappy. Could this contribute to the off flavors? Maybe instead of Acidic it's more of a yeasty off flavor? Will more aging help clear them?

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Old 04-11-2013, 10:29 PM   #3
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a lot of people who use extract will pick up some sort of bite/twang/whatever you want to call it from the extract. How are you adding the extract, are you using liquid extract or DME? Are you adding it to the boil for the full 60 mins? This could play a big part in what you are picking up. I think you are right to also look towards the water, yeast, and fermentation temps. Obviously the warm ferment will add off flavors, but since you are picking it up on the one fermented at cooler temps it seems like the problem is somewhere else. I'm no expert on water chemistry but there are certain compounds that can contribute to off flavors. One simple option is to buy a 2.5g thingy of bottled spring water for a couple bucks and use that next time. I typically use bottled water for my AG batches. As for yeast, the cheapo dry yeast that comes with the kits is often not that great. I'd suggest grabbing something else, if sticking with dry go with notty or S-05 or whatever works for you. This might not fix this exact problem but it could certainly improve the quality of the brew you're making for a relatively low cost. If pinching pennies just read up on yeast washing and you can re-use some of your yeast from previous batches.

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Old 04-11-2013, 10:35 PM   #4
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check these threads out:

http://www.homebrewtalk.com/f37/extract-twang-303678/
http://www.homebrewtalk.com/f37/extr...ng-what-54434/
http://www.homebrewtalk.com/f37/poss...anation-32621/

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Old 04-11-2013, 10:36 PM   #5
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I have a batch going right now using WLP300 (hefe) so if that comes out good I'm hoping it was just poor temp/yeast. As for the extract The Irish red (2nd batch) used 5lb liquid 1lb dry (if I recall correctly) and the first one I also split it, but don't remember the split (had liquid sitting around, bought a little more dry to get desired gravity.)

If my current one comes out poorly, the next thing I was going to try was swap to bottled water. I also added a campden to the water before getting started to eliminate any possible chlorine/cholramine off flavors.

I was thinking about taking a bottle down to the LHBS and seeing if they could dissect it

Edit: Thanks for those links, I'll definitely read up on em later today and hopefully find some positive information.

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Old 04-11-2013, 10:56 PM   #6
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Sounds like it could very well be a water issue. Pick up some RO water for your next batch and give that a shot. The malt extract has all the minerals the brew will need so there is no need to try to make any additions to it...if you were all grain, that would be a different story. If want to use tap water you should at least run it through a carbon filter or get some campden tablets to remove the chlorine. Even if the chlorine is removed, other minerals in your water could be throwing it off, so I would at least try one batch with the RO water. If you are still getting that "bite", then you can start looking into other issues.

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Old 04-11-2013, 11:00 PM   #7
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I added a campden tablet to the water beforehand on the batch that's going right now so we'll see if that helps in any way. If not I'll definitely try picking up some bottled water jugs for my next brew and see if it's a water issue.

In the meantime I took the bottles out the fridge and am gonna let em sit for a few more weeks and see if things are improving.

Keep the suggestions coming, every bit helps in narrowing down the culprit.

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Old 04-11-2013, 11:04 PM   #8
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yeah definitely check those links on extract twang since you used LME for both batches. You may be picking up some of that, especially if you were boiling the extract for very long. When I was doing extract batches I always boiled it for the full 60 mins and didn't notice it but my palate doesn't seem to be very sensitive to some of these things.

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Old 04-11-2013, 11:09 PM   #9
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I would steep for however long it recommended (15-30 minutes), remove from heat & add LME + DME, turn heat back on and boil for 60 minutes with the hop additions as directed, cool then pitch. I'm not sure what those threads say because I haven't had a chance to read em, but I definitely will later tonight because it seems to be related.

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Old 04-11-2013, 11:16 PM   #10
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Acyr90 View Post
If it helps I looked up the two yeasts I used. The first one was a left over Mr Beer dry ale yeast (Bought some extract and messed around with my own recipe in a 2 gal batch) and the 2nd was the Muton's dry yeast that came with my Midwest Irish red extract kit. After looking up these yeasts, they both seem crappy. Could this contribute to the off flavors? Maybe instead of Acidic it's more of a yeasty off flavor? Will more aging help clear them?
Yes, those are crappy yeast strains alright. That could be part of it. But I wonder if your water has lots of bicarbonate and that's where some of the sharpness is coming from.

If this next batch comes out ok, then you know it was the yeast. If it's still got that "bite", then I'd suggest using purchased water. Those "water machines" in some grocery stores and Walmarts produce cheap reverse osmosis water, and that would be a great choice for water for brewing.
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