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Old 08-19-2009, 09:50 AM   #1
Cotabas
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Default my beer taste like wine...

... but at least it has alcohol in it. i used a brew craft extract can of newcastle brown and 3 lbs of dry light malt extract. i didnt use the yeast it came with i used a safale 04 something like that, the blue pack. i added it when the wort got to 78, it fermented quick started after a few hours. after probably 15 - 20 hours it was down to 1.5 to 2 mins between bubbles in the airlock so i switched it to a secondary where i never see the airlock bubble. i tasted when i switched it to the secondary, it tasted a little winey and a little sweet. by winey i mean that dark wine acohol taste maybe?. its been a week now i tasted it again it was more winey (i think) and the sg was 1.045 (just got a hydrometer). should my secondary airlock bubble? should i leave it in my secondary or bottle it? what makes the winey taste? how can i get rid of it?

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Old 08-19-2009, 11:20 AM   #2
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It may taste winey or sweet from your fermentation temperatures. Fermenting that hot will cause the yeast to produce lots of esters and give you a fruity taste.

Also, with a FG of 1.045, there are a lot of residual sugars left and that can be adding to the sweetness, almost making it taste cloyingly sweet or like a dessert wine.

Personally, I let my airlock completely stop bubbling in my primary, give it a few more days, and then transfer it off the yeast to a secondary just to give it a chance to clear some more. An airlock is not a good gauge of fermentation. The wort can be fermenting away still and show little to no signs in the airlock. I have had a Wit still bubbling for a week after the airlock stopped.

Your best gauge is to take a hydrometer reading and when its stable for 3 days, then rack it to a secondary. The airlock may have stopped, but you when you open the lid of your primary, you may still see lots of bubbles breaking the surface

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Old 08-19-2009, 11:48 AM   #3
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thank you that is very helpful chode720. is there anything i can do to save the taste of my current beer? will time fix it?

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Old 08-19-2009, 01:04 PM   #4
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+1 on leaving it extra long in the primary - it will only help the beer.

At this point I think your best bet might be just to leave it in the secondary for a few weeks, though Im sure someone with more experience can guide you a little better.

Either way, it sounds like its drinkable, so good job!

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Old 08-19-2009, 01:32 PM   #5
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I think your hydrometer reading is wrong. At 1.045, it wouldn't taste winey.

Take another reading- you can use a sanitized turkey baster or a wine thief to take out a sample and put it in the cylinder. Make sure the hydrometer floats- add enough beer to ensure it's not resting on the bottom. Spin it gently so that it's not sticking to the side, then bend over and read the hydrometer at eye level. I'm betting it's much, much lower than 1.045.

The "winey" taste is probably coming from the hot fermentation. 78 degrees is very hot for an ale. It probably got even hotter during the most vigorous part of fermentation. As a result, it can have kind of a hot alcohol taste to it. It'll still be fine to drink, but that's where the flavor is probably coming from.

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