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Old 03-28-2007, 03:05 AM   #1
Mar 2007
Posts: 3

I've noticed that when I finish a glass of my beer, put it down on the counter and come back 5 minutes later and sniff the glass, there's a "stale" beer aroma. I know that all beer will get to that point eventually through oxidation, but the commercially brewed beers I drink do not get that stale smell nearly as quickly.

I attribute my problem to oxidation, perhaps during transfers. I transfer from primary to secondary and from secondary to a keg. I'm as careful as possible during transfers, and start my siphons by pushing a bit of CO2 into the top of the carboy cap with a racking cane.

I dry hop in secondary almost always.

Any feedback or advice appreciated.


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Old 03-28-2007, 03:07 AM   #2
Yuri_Rage's Avatar
Jul 2006
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Sure sounds like oxidation, but your brief description of your procedures seems to eliminate that as the cause. I'm not sure where to point you, but I do know that oxidized beer smells and tastes like wet cardboard. Does that help?
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Old 03-28-2007, 11:42 AM   #3
zoebisch01's Avatar
Nov 2006
Central PA
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I am a bit confused. Are you saying that this is when you are done drinking it? If so that happens to everyone I think. The film left in the glass always smelled odd to me after it was empty on all beers. Is this what you are talking about? If so and it is not when you are actually drinking it, don't worry about it.
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Old 03-28-2007, 11:47 AM   #4
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Oct 2005
Beautiful Beaumont, TX, TEXAS!!!!!!
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We are missing the obvious here. hy the hell is the glass EMPTY, and why are you smelling it?
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Old 03-28-2007, 11:59 AM   #5
McCall St. Brewer
Sep 2005
West Monroe, Louisiana
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The only solution I can think of is to refill your glass. Then you won't have that stale smell any more.

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Old 03-28-2007, 03:34 PM   #6
Dec 2005
San Diego
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I guess homebrew has more stuff in it, to give it more flavor and more aroma. So more stuff to smell later too?
So far, I've had more experience thinking than I've had don't think they are mutually exclusive, do you?

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Old 03-28-2007, 04:40 PM   #7
Dec 2005
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Have you tried washing your hands?
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Old 03-29-2007, 01:36 AM   #8
Mar 2007
Posts: 3

Ok. Ok. I get the point.

But you know what, I've gone back to one of my Brewing in Style series books (Pale, Terry Foster), and I think I might know the problem - the fermentation temperature was too high, which can result in the stale, wet cardboard smell.

I brewed this batch in January and my basement was sitting at around 60. My experience with American Ale II, is that below 68 it pretty much stops working, so I tried to keep the temp up with a 60 watt utility light next to the carboy. I came down at one point and my the fermometer on the outside of the carboy was reading 76 - too high.

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