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Old 12-05-2013, 09:06 PM   #1
Moshmeister
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Hi all,

I've just tasted my first brew, a Coopers Stout kit. I fermented at 22-23c for 3 weeks then carbonated in bottles for 4 weeks. I was very careful with sanitising etc. and followed all the advice from this very site.

The beer has carbonated but there's a very strong taste that is hard to describe that ruins the beer. To try and describe it... you know that smell when you're touring a brewery? It tastes like a strong version of that. It's like that distinct smell of the wort (beer, but something extra in there).... but stronger. It's almost like red wine in a way.

Could anyone please shed some light on what I might have done wrong? I know the fermentation temperature is a bit higher than ideal but it's still within the guidelines so can't imagine it caused such a strong effect.

The beer is barely drinkable sadly.

Mosh



 
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Old 12-05-2013, 09:12 PM   #2
Clonefan94
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Did you check gravity readings to make sure the beer fermented?

Water quality may have been an issue as well, Chlorine. But the strong wort smell makes me think the beer didn't ferment out fully.


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Old 12-05-2013, 09:17 PM   #3
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I would highly recommend trying other brands. My first beers were mr beer (used to be coopers) and they were all bad. Just keep with the hobby and know that practice really does make a difference. Check our some of these extracts kits and see if one of these would be worth trying.

http://www.northernbrewer.com/shop/b...sc&order=price
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Old 12-05-2013, 09:19 PM   #4
Moshmeister
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Yep the beer definitely fermented - I took gravity readings and left it for 2 weeks after the FG was stable to 2 days in a row. I also used bottled water so that shouldn't be an issue.

 
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Old 12-05-2013, 09:20 PM   #5
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You might also think about letting it sit a while more. Seven weeks from the start of fermentation is not very long for a stout. Let it sit for another month, then try another one. Aging will probably do it some good.

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Old 12-05-2013, 09:20 PM   #6
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My dad did a couple of Coopers batches and those seemed to have a wine like taste to them as well. I've heard some people mention that the instructions given by Coopers aren't really the greatest and that there are better ways to brew it. Maybe try other extracts from other companies and see if you get the same results.
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Old 12-05-2013, 09:22 PM   #7
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I feel your pain. The same feeling of dread washed over me last year after tasting my st. patty's day stout. Bleck! Gross! Give it time. Dark beers can take a while to develop in the bottle. In my case, it took a good 6 months + for the beer to really get good. Put your young stouts aside for the moment and move on to your next brew. Try them again in a few months. You may be surprised with how their flavor evolves.
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Old 12-05-2013, 09:25 PM   #8
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Also, did you use the yeast that came with the Cooper's kit? Those kits are pretty notorious for shipping with fairly substandard yeast, which can definitely have an impact on your finished product. Next time around, try a kit from Northern Brewer, or Austin Homebrew Supply, or one of the more well known Internet homebrew supply shops - they tend to have high turnover, so their ingredients are fresher, and they also use a much higher grade of yeast than you'll typically find in a Cooper's kit.

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Old 12-05-2013, 09:26 PM   #9
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Several things are common for new brewers using extract kits:

1. Fermenting at too high a temperature = off flavors
2. Bacteria contamination = off flavors
3. Extract kit "twang" flavor. Every one I did from kits had this, I noticed the difference right away when I went all grain.
4. Old yeast = underpitching can lead to off flavors in beer. I brewed a brown ale that didn't have enough healthy yeast used and the yeast stressed and produced some nasty chemical cleaner type off flavor that made me pour out 90% of that batch!

Practice makes perfect! I wasn't happy with my first beer either but now I make a couple recipes that are truly worthy of a tap handle at the local pub!
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Old 12-05-2013, 09:28 PM   #10
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Sorry, not good at immediate recognition of metric temps. 22 - 33 C is a pretty huge range. And you are already at the top of a good temp at 22. If it got up to 33 during fermentation, even just getting a degree or more above 22, that would be my first guess as to you main problem.

Try to keep it below 20, optimally you'd want it at 18 C for best results.

Once you get up in that 22 and above, (72F and above) temps yeast start throwing off odd flavors.


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