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Old 02-24-2011, 10:14 PM   #1
rwabdu
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Default what did i do, and is it to late now?

I brewed a Weizenbier from a kit. i bottled half of it from primary at three weeks. the other half i put in secondary an it has been there for almost two weeks. today I sampled what was in my secondary and it smelt strongly of apples and tasted very different than it had at the end of secondary, not beer like at all, much more like cider. it also may have been darker.

It didn't taste terrible, but it certainly wasn't what i was expecting, any idea what happened? and can i make it better?


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Old 02-24-2011, 10:27 PM   #2
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That sounds like acetaldehyde which has a cidery flavor and usually smells of green apples. This is a typical yeast by-product and the yeast should take care of it on its own which means you need to leave it alone for a little longer. It might be a little too late for the beers you bottled as they don't have a lot of yeast in each bottle and the yeast that is there is now eating the priming sugar...but if you let the bottles sit for 3 or even more weeks, it should be ok. In secondary, again you removed the beer from most of the yeast but there should still be enough to take care of the acetaldehyde.

It also happens in high sugar recipes but I wouldn't think a wheat beer would be that high in sugar, unless you decided to add some corn sugar to your wort lol

What temperature range did you ferment at?


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Old 02-24-2011, 10:31 PM   #3
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I didn't add any sugar. I don't use temp control but my basement is about ranges from 65-70F
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Old 02-24-2011, 10:39 PM   #4
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Without knowing the yeast strain, that seems to be a good range for ale.

I say the best thing for you to do now is keep the bottles and secondary closer to the upper part of that range to get the yeast eating and cleaning that up. You can also try to shake the bucket A LITTLE to get the yeast moving again. You don't want to aerate the beer but just get it moved around a little. You can also try to shake each bottle to get the yeast going again.
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Old 02-24-2011, 10:46 PM   #5
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yeah i dont know the yeast strain, the kit didnt say. im going to sample it again. it will be interesting to see the difference with the half i bottled after secondary, those didnt have ANY acetaldehyde smell at all. thanks for the tips.
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Old 02-24-2011, 10:46 PM   #6
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Contamination can also produce cider-like characteristics.
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Old 02-24-2011, 10:58 PM   #7
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.... thats what i am afraid of. But its just hard to imagine that it got contaminated after the fermentation stopped because it was pretty good two weeks ago when i bottled part of it. then again acetaldehyde wouldn't normally develop at this point in the fermentation either.

i went to check it again just to see if i was crazy, but it really does, its unmistakable even to my untrained nose. too weird. im going to give it a gentle stir. its it kinda exiting thinking about the chemistry thats happening tho, i love chemistry.

if it doesn't go away, will it be ok to drink still? i mean it doesn't taste terrible.
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Old 02-24-2011, 11:06 PM   #8
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Yeast do strange things. I wouldn't rule out the production of acetaldehyde in secondary...okay, personally I would, but you don't have to. Beer is always susceptible to contamination, even when alcohol is present, just less likely. I thought contamination when you mentioned transferring to secondary.
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Old 02-24-2011, 11:08 PM   #9
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well my dad just smelt it and said it smells like a good strong beer, no hint of apples at all even tho i still smell apples. I'm just going to leave it alone and bottle it on schedule and see

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Old 02-24-2011, 11:15 PM   #10
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Quote:
Originally Posted by rwabdu View Post
well my dad just smelt it and said it smells like a good strong beer, no hint of apples at all. I'm just going to leave it alone and bottle it on schedule and see
Sounds like a plan.


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