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Old 10-28-2013, 03:14 PM   #1
Oct 2013
Montreal, Qc
Posts: 56
Liked 5 Times on 5 Posts


As my 3rd batch until I started homebrewing, I designed a APA, using:

2-row (76%)
munich malt (16%)
caramel 40 (8%)
Galena hop (13% AA, bitterness) (60min boil)
Cascades hop (aroma 15min)
Safbrew S-33 --> I used this yeast to restart a stuck fermentation batch

According to beersmith, the IBU was supposed to be ~70.

While taking the OG (1.060), I tasted the wort and it was REALLY bitter, wondering if it was too much!

Fermentation went fine and I bottled the batch 16 days later, with a FG of 1.020, which is a little higher than expected (BS = 1.017). BUT, my concern is that when I tasted the flat beer, the high bitter taste was almost gone.. it was like a "normal" beer..

What could lower the bitter taste?

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Old 10-28-2013, 09:46 PM   #2
May 2013
Seal Beach, California
Posts: 558
Liked 75 Times on 59 Posts

Both the bitterness and aroma of hops fades over time and it's my understanding that this can happen in the fermenter too.

That said, I can't think of a reason why it would fade as much as you report it has over a mere 16 days.

Sorry I'm not being more helpful. Maybe somebody who knows more about brewing than yours truly (I'm still pretty new) can provide greater insight.

Good luck!
Drinking: Hefeweizen
Carbing/Conditioning/Aging: Nothing
Fermenter #1 (6.5g): Empty
Fermenter #2 (6.5g): Biermuncher's Cream of Three Crops
Fermenter #3 & #4 (1.0g): Empty

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Old 10-28-2013, 10:28 PM   #3
terrapinj's Avatar
Dec 2010
Santa Monica, CA
Posts: 2,415
Liked 170 Times on 126 Posts

i've given up on tasting pre-ferm samples for the most part - it's usually very sweet with a raw hop flavor/bitterness - they never represent what the final beer tastes like and I think a bit of that also has to do with misc trub and debris in the sample

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Old 10-29-2013, 01:48 AM   #4
beergolf's Avatar
Jan 2011
collingswood, nj
Posts: 5,941
Liked 1167 Times on 798 Posts

It will change with carbonation. Your BU:GU ratio is 1.17 so it should be pretty bitter. You are in IPA not APA range.

Wait until it is carbed up and report back. I will bet it is fine.

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Old 10-30-2013, 07:40 AM   #5
Sep 2012
Honolulu, Hawaii
Posts: 47
Liked 1 Times on 1 Posts

I've noticed the same thing with my post boil wort. It's really harshly bitter and awful tasting and then after primary everything is fine.

My guess is that the more harsh hop compounds (along with a decent portion of the alpha) are bound up by the yeast during fermentation. It's similar to the reason that Vinnie recommends removing the beer from the yeast before dry hopping. I'd bet that a hef yeast cake would taste orders of magnitude less bitter than a pale ale yeast cake, even more than the difference between the actual beers.

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Old 11-18-2013, 12:53 PM   #6
Oct 2013
Montreal, Qc
Posts: 56
Liked 5 Times on 5 Posts

I bottle the beer 3 weeks ago. I tasted one after the first week of carbonation and it was OK, a little sweet and bitter. I tasted an other after 2 weeks and I noticed a shy change bitterness. 3 weeks later, there is a significant change on taste and head retention. It looks like it is getting better every week, as the bitterness seems to cover the sweetness.

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