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Old 04-04-2013, 04:28 PM   #1
Nov 2009
Bologna, Italy
Posts: 45

After making four completely undrinkable batches of beer, I've finally found the cause of my problem: my ****ing aluminum pot.
In each batch there was an incredibly powerful metallic aftertaste, and in some cases it was overpowering in the nose as well. Horrific stuff, I never finished a single bottle of any of these batches.
Now over the course of these last few batches I had eliminated all possible other variables, I had changed from using tap water to bottled water, I had stopped using my cooler mash tun for fear that the metal pieces in it were corroding and leaching metallic flavors, and I have cleaned and cleaned and cleaned my aluminum pot(one of two pots I use.) Each batch was using different grains, different hops and different yeasts. At the end the only variable that was left was the aluminum pot that I was still using. I didn't use it for my most recent batch, and the beer has turned out wonderfully.

So I just wanted to post this to let people know that aluminum pots can leach metallic flavors if in poor condition, and these flavors can be strong enough to completely ruin your beer. My advice is to either avoid aluminum or make sure you really take care of it well. I personally won't be using any more aluminum in my brewing process.
Anyone else with a similar experience?

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Old 04-04-2013, 04:31 PM   #2
Post Hoc Ergo Propter Hoc
Revvy's Avatar
Dec 2007
"Detroitish" Michigan
Posts: 40,926
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Nope. Love aluminum. Lot's of us use it with great results. Sounds like operator error to me.

Did you create an aluminum oxide coating by boiling water in it first? That's all you need to do to avoid metallic flavors....

Also DON'T SCRUB the pot.
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Old 04-04-2013, 04:31 PM   #3
mean old man
GrogNerd's Avatar
Oct 2012
Sterling, VA
Posts: 6,241
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don't scrub your aluminum pots!

need to oxidize them by boiling a full pot of water for an hour

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Old 04-04-2013, 04:41 PM   #4
Nov 2009
Bologna, Italy
Posts: 45

I did not boil water in it first, but before I started getting the flavor I had made quite a few successful batches with it. Then the aluminum flavor started creeping up on me. Could not boiling water in it when I first started using it to brew have lead to the eventual off flavors I've been getting from it?
If I did a boil in it now should I be able to get an oxide coating?

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Old 04-04-2013, 05:30 PM   #5
Pratzie's Avatar
Sep 2012
Northeastern Pennsylvania
Posts: 1,621
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yeah scrubbing will take the oxide off causing issues. I just upgraded to keggles but before that i had a 22 quart aluminum pot for partial boils. I found out just before my first batch that it could be an issue so i boiled a few gallons before i did the first batch of wort and haven't had an issue since. u can always see the line of the oxide layer too.
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