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Old 01-03-2013, 07:37 PM   #1
Eman24dx
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Default Might Have Screwed Up

I brewed an Irish Red. Followed brewing & sanitation instructions to a T. After 13 days in primary it tasted awesome, like ready to drink awesome, and I racked to secondary to free up primary. When I went to bottle 10 days later the beer tasted much worse than it did out of the primary. It tasted sour and nothing like the deliciousness that came from the primary. Is this common? Could beer taste great and get worse 10 days later?

Now my only thought why or how I could have made a mistake is the glass carboy which came in the mail from Midwest might have not been cleaned or sanitized before the transfer. I find this hard to believe because I have been super anal and Star Saned the S**t out of everything but I do not remember cleaning the new carboy. I would say its 50/50 on whether I did or not. Would this (new never used, or cleaned/sanitized) carboy led to an infection? I didn't see any signs of infection or anything crazy just a noticeable change in taste. Been bottled 4 days now, 2 bottles were clear so i could see whats going on and nothing odd in the bottle just the usual particles settle to bottom.

Please help.


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Old 01-03-2013, 07:54 PM   #2
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It sounds like it's an infection. Infections often cause sour tastes due to the bacteria lacto bascillus (sp?) producing lactic acid. If you didn't sanitize the carboy you transfered it into then I would say there is about a 99% chance that is where the infection came from (the other 1% would come from whether or not you sneezed it when transfering it). There are tons of bacteria and potential bugs just floating on dust particles in the air so I can only imagine what a carboy thats been collecting dust in a warehouse and then handled by Billy and Buddy down in the shipping department might have on and in it. In the future I wouldn't bother using a secondary at all and I would DEFINITELY make sure to sanitize EVERYTHING. If you can't remember if you sanitized it, just do it again for good measure. 2 extra minutes isn't worth a whole batch of beer.

On the up side, now you can call it a Sour Irish Red and tell people it's supposed to taste like that!


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Old 01-03-2013, 08:03 PM   #3
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Give it some time. Generally a tartness or sour is not a good sign, but people have been known to have an off day when tasting. If you are lucky you might be ok.

Next time maybe a little less RDWHAHB and a bit more attention to sanitizing?
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Old 01-03-2013, 08:05 PM   #4
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As anal as I have been I feel like I had to clean/sanitize it but that was a good 72 beers ago and I really have no memory about that day besides thinking what a pain it was racking to a secondary.

I guess what I am asking is does beer ever taste great after fermentation and then get worse closer to bottling? If this batch is ruined I will not be happy...
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Old 01-03-2013, 08:21 PM   #5
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A lot of times "green" beer will have a green apple taste to it caused by acetalaldehyde. The yeast usually clean this up and it only gets better with time though. Overcarbonation can cause a beer to taste sour or have a carbonic "bite" to it, but you said it tasted sour before you bottled it right? So that's probably not it. The only thing I can think of that will cause a beer to start tasting worse (especially in a sour way) is an infection. If that is the case I would be careful with the bottles. Bacteria can eat certain sugars that yeast can't which might cause the bottles to pressurize more than you expected just from the yeast metabolizing the priming sugar. This could lead to overcarbonation and potentially bottle bombs.
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Old 01-03-2013, 08:47 PM   #6
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Wait it out and see. Or just bottle it and see if it's better cold and carbed. And whatever you do get that next batch started!
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Old 01-09-2013, 02:29 PM   #7
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Not sure if I know how to post a picture or not but I tried to upload a picture of my beautiful, delicious, non-infected, "Tyrone McCarthy's Irish Red"

Turns out I must have cleaned/sanitized the carboy or been extremely lucky. Although after 8 days in the bottle I could tell it was a tad green it was still one of the best beers I have ever had. Beer Gods helped on this one...



[IMG]C:\Documents and Settings\ejg\My Documents\IMG01099-20130106-1904.jpg[/IMG]
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Old 01-09-2013, 02:48 PM   #8
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Eman24dx View Post
Not sure if I know how to post a picture or not
Click on manage attachments, choose a picture file, click upload and then close the window attachments window and continue your post as normal. It should post underneath.
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Old 01-09-2013, 02:49 PM   #9
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Can't see the picture, but that is awesome! I'm glad it worked out for you! It just goes to show that no matter how hard we try to screw up our beer, it usually turns out pretty great anyway.
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Old 01-09-2013, 06:01 PM   #10
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Will try to post the picture again


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