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Old 10-25-2010, 04:27 PM   #1
tobrew
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Default Fermentation to warm now have off flavor

Brewed a Summit EPA and the fermentation got way to warm 78 degrees. It was at that temp for a good day. Moved it to a cooler romm but when I tasted it last night it had an off flavor and smell. Not sure how to describe the taste or smell. Is there anything I can do to it? Dry hop??
Thanks for any advice.
mIke

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Old 10-25-2010, 04:32 PM   #2
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It sounds like you are tasting it in the fermenter? If that is the case, do nothing. Dryhop because you want to dryhop, NOT because you think something is wrong.

It really is hard to judge a beer until it's been about 6 weeks in the bottle. Just because you taste (or smell) something in primary or secondary DOESN'T mean it will be there when the beer is fully conditioned (that's also the case with kegging too.)

The thing to remember though is that if you are smelling or tasting this during fermentation not to worry. During fermentation all manner of stinky stuff is given off (ask lager brewers about rotten egg/sulphur smells, or Apfelwein makers about "rhino farts,") like we often say, fermentation is often ugly AND stinky and PERFECTLY NORMAL.

It's really only down the line, AFTER the beer has been fermented (and often after it has bottle conditioned even,) that you concern yourself with any flavor issues if they are still there.

I think too many new brewers focus to much on this stuff too early in the beer's journey. And they panic unnecessarily.

A lot of the stuff you smell/taste initially more than likely ends up disappearing either during a long primary/primary & secondary combo, Diacetyl rests and even during bottle conditioning.

If I find a flavor/smell, I usually wait til it's been in the bottle 6 weeks before I try to "diagnose" what went wrong, that way I am sure the beer has passed any window of greenness.

Lagering is a prime example of this. Lager yeast are prone to the production of a lot of byproducts, the most familiar one is sulphur compounds (rhino farts) but in the dark cold of the lagering process, which is at the minimum of a month (I think many homebrewers don't lager long enough) the yeast slowly consumes all those compounds which results in extremely clean tasting beers if done skillfully.

Ales have their own version of this, but it's all the same. Time is your friend.

If you are sampling your beer before you have passed a 'window of greeness" which my experience is about 3-6 weeks in the bottle, then you are more than likely just experiencing an "off flavor" due to the presence of those byproducts (that's what we mean when we say the beer is "green" it's still young and unconditioned.) but once the process is done, over 90% of the time the flavors/smells are gone.

Of the remaining 10%, half of those may still be salvageable through the long time storage that I mention in the Never dump your beer!!! Patience IS a virtue!!! Time heals all things, even beer:

And the remaining 50% of the last 10% are where these tables and lists come into play. To understand what you did wrong, so you can avoid it in the future.

Long story short....I betcha that smell/flavor will be long gone when the beer is carbed and conditioned.

In other words, relax, your beer will be just fine, like 99.5%.

You can find more info on that in here;

Of Patience and Bottle Conditioning.

Just remember it will not be the same beer it is now, and you shouldn't stress what you are tasting right now.

Our beer is more resilient then most new brewers realize, and time can be a big healer. Just read the stories in this thread of mine, and see how many times a beer that someone thought was bad, turned out to be fine weeks later.

http://www.homebrewtalk.com/f39/neve...en-beer-73254/

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Old 10-25-2010, 04:33 PM   #3
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Are you saying it's bottled & carbonated? Or are you tasting it before it's done.

If the former, then you should try to determine what the 'off-flavor' you're tasting is in order to diagnose the issue in order to prevent it from happening again. Saying it tastes 'off' doesn't give anyone enough info to be of any help.

If it's the latter - leave it alone and stop worrying about it. I think it's a good idea to taste your beer at the stages where you're forced to do transfers or take samples... but only so you can learn how the beer progresses. It shouldn't taste the way you expect it to yet... it's not done.

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Old 10-25-2010, 04:37 PM   #4
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Tasted it after the fermentation was complete. The best I can descrbe the taste is like a bandaids smell...

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Old 10-25-2010, 04:57 PM   #5
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I'm working with a similar issue, except mine got to 90 for about a day. Immediately cooled it to low 70s then build a "son of fermentation chiller" and let it ferment in the secondary at a consistent 68 for another week. Now it's kegged and I'm letting it age another 2-3 weeks. Tried some Friday night and it's getting better.

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