Spirit crushing defeat - Home Brew Forums
Register Now For Free!

Home Brew Forums > Home Brewing Beer > Extract Brewing > Spirit crushing defeat

Reply
 
Thread Tools
Old 01-24-2014, 09:21 PM   #1
695fingers
Recipes 
 
Jun 2013
Richmond, Virginia
Posts: 5
Liked 1 Times on 1 Posts



At this point I feel as though I want to give up and throw in the towel. All but two of my batches have ended up with the same, nearly undrinkable off flavor. To me it tastes plastic/medicinal . . . my wife says it tastes soapy but in either case every beer ends up tasting the same after about the 3 week mark. Straight out of the fermentor my last few batches have tasted pretty good. But given time they all degrade into the same flavor.

So far I have been doing extract batches. My fermentation is temperature controlled and I am pretty meticulous with cleaning and sanitation. According to my local water reports my tap water has chlorine/chloramines in it. So after finding this out I treated all my water with Camden tablets. No dice. Same ruining off flavor. OK so maybe the Camden wasn't working correctly I thought. Next batch I use all distilled water. Errr wrong after 3 weeks same flavor.

Next thought was maybe there was some bacteria or such in either my auto siphon,hoses or bottle filler. I clean them all extra thorough and my next batch is a cider. Turns out great! Problem solved! Nope, brew up the next batch tastes great as its coming out of the fermentor and now . . . yep you guessed it same plastic/medicinal flavor that masks everything else.

I don't know what to do and feel like giving up at this point. This forum is awesome and I would love any advice that anyone has as to what is going on and how I can fix it.

 
Reply With Quote
Old 01-24-2014, 09:26 PM   #2
Hello
HBT_SUPPORTER.png
 
Hello's Avatar
Recipes 
 
Aug 2013
Raleigh, North Carolina
Posts: 11,455
Liked 3402 Times on 2291 Posts


Don't give up.

From John Palmer, "These flavors are often described as mediciney, Band-Aid™ like, or can be spicy like cloves. The cause are various phenols which are initially produced by the yeast. Chlorophenols result from the reaction of chlorine-based sanitizers (bleach) with phenol compounds and have very low taste thresholds. Rinsing with boiled water after sanitizing is the best way to prevent these flavors."

Do you use bleach?

Others may also suggest that the taste is associated with an infection such as brettanomyces. Any signs of an infection at all? What is your fermentation vessel?

Little by little, I think this site can help you break down your process and the possible source. Have you fermented in anything else and gotten the same taste?

 
Reply With Quote
Old 01-24-2014, 09:29 PM   #3
johngaltsmotor
Recipes 
 
Dec 2010
Toledo, Ohio
Posts: 879
Liked 197 Times on 130 Posts


Okay, you say it tastes great coming out of the fermenter and 3 weeks later it sucks. What do you do after the fermenter? Are you bottling or kegging or secondary?
__________________
Pigs are magical creatures... they turn vegetables into BACON!!

 
Reply With Quote
Old 01-24-2014, 10:01 PM   #4
Crashola
Recipes 
 
Feb 2013
Posts: 26

Edit. Sorry -- i originally suggested using distilled water. I had the same issue. My wife even described a soapy taste too. Switching to RO water solved my problem.

 
Reply With Quote
Old 01-24-2014, 10:19 PM   #5
695fingers
Recipes 
 
Jun 2013
Richmond, Virginia
Posts: 5
Liked 1 Times on 1 Posts


Thanks for the replies.

Quote:
Originally Posted by Hello View Post
Do you use bleach?
Nope. No bleach just PBW and starsan.

Quote:
Originally Posted by Hello View Post
What is your fermentation vessel?

Little by little, I think this site can help you break down your process and the possible source. Have you fermented in anything else and gotten the same taste?
I have been fermenting in the same 6.5 gallon fermenting bucket. I have gotten the same off flavors except for two ciders which turned out pretty good. My next thought was replacing the bucket and auto siphon/tubing in case something had taken root that I haven't been able to get rid off.
Quote:
What do you do after the fermenter? Are you bottling or kegging or secondary?
After fermentation was done it was going into bottles. My totally awesome wife bought me a kegging set up for my birthday! So the last one went into a keg.

 
Reply With Quote
Old 01-24-2014, 10:26 PM   #6
fuzzy2133
HBT_SUPPORTER.png
 
fuzzy2133's Avatar
Recipes 
 
Nov 2012
Morgan Hill, CA
Posts: 2,189
Liked 410 Times on 316 Posts


Tubing is cheap not a bad idea to replace it. Any scratches in your fermentation bucket?
__________________
I think the people who do stand in line for beer; they need to get a hobby, they need to get out and see the world a little bit more. -John Holl-

 
Reply With Quote
Old 01-24-2014, 10:29 PM   #7
JBOGAN
HBT_SUPPORTER.png
 
JBOGAN's Avatar
Recipes 
 
Jan 2013
Rochester, Michigan
Posts: 584
Liked 110 Times on 71 Posts


What kits did you use?fermentation temps?Boil schedule?

 
Reply With Quote
Old 01-24-2014, 11:19 PM   #8
695fingers
Recipes 
 
Jun 2013
Richmond, Virginia
Posts: 5
Liked 1 Times on 1 Posts


Quote:
Originally Posted by fuzzy2133 View Post
Tubing is cheap not a bad idea to replace it. Any scratches in your fermentation bucket?
No scratches that I can see or feel.

Quote:
Originally Posted by JBOGAN View Post
What kits did you use?fermentation temps?Boil schedule?
Mostly kits from some of the bigger online shops (NorthernBrewer, Austin Homebrew) and a batch from my LHBS. Along with being from different places they have been different styles as well. My fermentation temps have all been in accordance with the yeast used.I have an old chest freezer for temp. control. As far as the boil schedule they have been pretty standard. I have been doing full volume boils with late extract additions and adding the hops at the prescribed intervals.

 
Reply With Quote
Old 01-24-2014, 11:43 PM   #9
flars
HBT_SUPPORTER.png
Recipes 
 
May 2011
Medford, WI
Posts: 6,996
Liked 1184 Times on 983 Posts


Quote:
Originally Posted by 695fingers View Post
At this point I feel as though I want to give up and throw in the towel. All but two of my batches have ended up with the same, nearly undrinkable off flavor. To me it tastes plastic/medicinal . . . my wife says it tastes soapy but in either case every beer ends up tasting the same after about the 3 week mark. Straight out of the fermentor my last few batches have tasted pretty good. But given time they all degrade into the same flavor.

So far I have been doing extract batches. My fermentation is temperature controlled and I am pretty meticulous with cleaning and sanitation. According to my local water reports my tap water has chlorine/chloramines in it. So after finding this out I treated all my water with Camden tablets. No dice. Same ruining off flavor. OK so maybe the Camden wasn't working correctly I thought. Next batch I use all distilled water. Errr wrong after 3 weeks same flavor.

Next thought was maybe there was some bacteria or such in either my auto siphon,hoses or bottle filler. I clean them all extra thorough and my next batch is a cider. Turns out great! Problem solved! Nope, brew up the next batch tastes great as its coming out of the fermentor and now . . . yep you guessed it same plastic/medicinal flavor that masks everything else.

I don't know what to do and feel like giving up at this point. This forum is awesome and I would love any advice that anyone has as to what is going on and how I can fix it.
Campden tablets will not rid your water of chloramines. Switch to distilled or RO water if you don't have access to well water. Give it another go.

 
Reply With Quote
Old 01-24-2014, 11:50 PM   #10
Foosier
 
Foosier's Avatar
Recipes 
 
Aug 2012
Indianapolis, IN
Posts: 515
Liked 99 Times on 78 Posts


NO, NO, NO. Campden DOES get rid of chlorine AND chloramines. That is the preferred solution if you are not using RO water. Please check the Brew Science sticky if you have questions on proper campden usage.

IslandLizard Likes This 
Reply With Quote
Reply
Thread Tools


Similar Threads
Thread Thread Starter Forum Replies Last Post
Carapils in the mash. Doesn't that defeat the purpose? DrHop General Techniques 18 08-19-2012 04:23 AM
2011 Cider notes - Victory from the jaws of Defeat hroth521 Cider Forum 24 08-03-2012 02:46 AM
Will starsan defeat jet dry? RogueGoose85 Equipment/Sanitation 8 05-01-2011 05:12 PM
Complete defeat on a double batch (w/pic) NogLager Beginners Beer Brewing Forum 12 01-18-2010 04:29 AM
How to defeat oxidation? brett General Techniques 20 12-23-2007 07:21 PM


Forum Jump