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Home Brew Forums > Home Brewing Beer > Beginners Beer Brewing Forum > Tannin Issues
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Old 07-23-2013, 03:34 AM   #1
bacchusmj
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Default Tannin Issues

So Ive been doing all-grain for about 9 months and rocked out about 12 batches. 9 of them have been amazing and 3 of them had an issue that I really couldnt put my finger on, but I think I figured it is Tannins (probably from excess mash temp).

Looking at my notes it appears the 3 beers in question were the 3 beers I mashed out. The others I simply mashed, then batch sparged with 168 degree water. I may have an issue with my thermometer, since the mashouts were all at 205 which is what beersmith has told me is the right temp (as a sidenote, those three beers I had much better efficiency).

In my review I have a couple questions:

1) Mashout --> should I feel the need to mashout? My process has been to add a quantity of near-boiling water just after my mash, stir and rest for ten minutes) efficiency has been better, beer has been bad.

2) can you detect tannins before bottling/kegging or are they higlighted by carbonation? I ask this because at least two of the beers tasted fine before bottling or kegging and now the tannin taste is terrible.

3) Is there any other sources of tannins that I might be missing in my trouble-shooting?

Thanks in advance.

(Signed) MY Mouth feeling like Im sucking on grape skins.

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Old 07-23-2013, 03:36 AM   #2
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FWIW, the beers with tannin issues were a German Alt (really bad), a Pride of Ringwood Pale ale, and a Brown Ale. All very different grain bills, hops, yeasts, etc.

Im currently sipping a sample of a cascade amber that is 14 days old and I taste no tannin at all (and this one was mashed out)

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Old 07-23-2013, 04:02 AM   #3
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I seriously doubt your problems are due to tannins. I have read that tannins are extracted by a combination of high mash temperatures, ph and time. The combination is unlikely in homebrewing.
Even so putting near boiling water on your grains will not raise the temperature to levels where tannin extraction would be a problem.

I don't bother with a mash out. From what I have read it has little effect on the beer.

I am not sure of the origin of your problems but I don't think tannins is it.

And 14 days from when? Bottled or kegged? Seems very young - likely to get even better with time!

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Old 07-23-2013, 05:21 AM   #4
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Im guessing it is tannin from the flavor Im getting. basically a grape skin/burnt tea flavor.

the 14 days was from pitching. Still young at 1.065, just drinking my sample. not bottled or kegged, still at around 1.025

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Old 07-23-2013, 11:59 AM   #5
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The mash out temp is definitely high; something is probably not configured correctly in beersmith. A mash or sparge pH above 6 is also said to cause tannin extraction. I've read that pH and temperature and pH is more likely the cause than temperature alone. Also, over crushing your grains can lead to tannins.

I think tannin extraction is certainly possible on a homebrew scale. Experienced homebrewers in my brew club had tannin issues when doing a partigyle brew. They measured a high pH during the small beer's sparge which caused tannin issues. That's just one example, but as listed above temperature and pH can extract tannins from the grain's husk. I believe this can happen regardless off scale.

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Old 07-23-2013, 04:50 PM   #6
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How much could over-crushing the grains have todo with tannin extraction? I've been doing a lot of tinkering with my crush in an effort to get better efficiency and maybe I went too far.

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Old 07-23-2013, 05:12 PM   #7
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FWIW I had the same problem with the grape skin tannin taste in everything from a porter to pale ale. I finally solved it when I started using RO water and salt additions. I have friends that brew with the same source tap water with no issues.
IMO brew your next batch with RO from the water dispenser at your neighborhood supermarket. And follow the basic recommendations in the water primer here:
http://www.homebrewtalk.com/f128/bre...primer-198460/


Good Luck and Prost M8B

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Old 07-23-2013, 05:28 PM   #8
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I would def go with RO as Magic8 stated. I had a serious battle with a Tannin taste but I think I have killed it. That turned out to be (I think) a heater element problem. Do you brew electric or propane? I think I was scorching my brews but I never thought it tasted as other describe it on the site. Even so over the same trail and error I went to RO with some gypsum and calcium chloride. I can get a very smooth tasting beer and balance the pH very well. If you are in a tannin battle then getting a meter like Hannah checker would be worth the $30 on amazon. I now have a much better understanding oh pH and what effects it.

People speculate over crushing can release but I am not sure. You can just sparge rather than mashout. People def question the need to increase temps for any other reason than stopping the conversion. Time does increase pH in my experience and sitting longer can have pH creep up a bit but only to an extent.

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Old 07-24-2013, 01:52 AM   #9
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SInce I batch sparge I think Im gonna stop mashing out all together, opting instead to just put the runnings on the burner and get them heating up.

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