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Old 04-12-2008, 01:27 AM   #1
brewgrl
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Default Newbie Q: What does "green" beer taste like?

so, like any good newbie I've been reading the brewing books by Palmer and Dave Miller and they both talk about beer tasting "green" after 1-2 weeks in the bottle (ie not ready).

I'm wondering if any of you more experienced brewers could describe this taste? Is it more of an aftertaste? obvious or subtle?

Thanks!


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Old 04-12-2008, 02:17 AM   #2
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I dont think anyone can really answer that question "green" is any negative flavor that disappears after aging. It also varies a lot depending on the style, a strong alcohol beer might have a hot alcohol taste while a lighter beer might have yeasty flavor. I guess the only difference between a green beer and a bad beer is if the bad flavor disappears after a while.


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Old 04-12-2008, 02:34 AM   #3
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Strong alcohol, strong hops, lots of yeast flavor many other unpleasant flavors are around when a beer is young. Depends on the style of the beer. If a beer tastes bad and is young give it more time. If a beer has had plenty of time to age and tastes bad there is nothing much you can do.
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Old 04-12-2008, 02:50 AM   #4
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........... you can learn to like it though. I always drink some when bottling and when hydrometer testing. I drink one after a week and another at two weeks. It is kind of like a ritual for me, bottling a few 12 ounce samples and when I am brewing next week "here is to last weeks brew!"
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Old 04-12-2008, 02:52 AM   #5
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Taste your brew at 2 weeks and compare it to 3 weeks and 4 weeks. I always sample an early bottle to see how beer matures. Different beers mature differently. Some brews taste great at 3 weeks, others 3 months. You may ask, "Why didn't it taste that great at 3 weeks? Green beer probably." Otherwise, the tastes/flavors have not gelled yet. Maybe the beer will seem a little harsh, a little sharp, and just need a little more time to get together. If you have not started yet, you'll never experience this phenomenon until you brew. Peace.
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Old 04-12-2008, 03:11 AM   #6
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It's kind of like...Irony. It's pretty hard to describe but you'll know it when you see it....or taste it as the case may be.

My best comparison is:
Green beer is like putting all the raw ingredients for chicken soup in a bowl and trying to eat it.
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Old 04-12-2008, 04:48 PM   #7
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Thanks, everyone, that definitely helps. I've had my first brew, an amber ale, in the bottle for just under 2 weeks and would definitely describe it as tasting "sharp" and possibly unbalanced, but not really bad/contaminated/spoiled.

Another question if anyone's still reading...
when do you move your beer into the fridge for storage? Do you keep tasting it until it seems balanced and then chill it down? Does aging continue much in the fridge, or are you just trying to maintain the pre-fridge result?

Cheers.
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Old 04-12-2008, 05:22 PM   #8
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Quote:
Originally Posted by brewgrl
Thanks, everyone, that definitely helps. I've had my first brew, an amber ale, in the bottle for just under 2 weeks and would definitely describe it as tasting "sharp" and possibly unbalanced, but not really bad/contaminated/spoiled.

Another question if anyone's still reading...
when do you move your beer into the fridge for storage? Do you keep tasting it until it seems balanced and then chill it down? Does aging continue much in the fridge, or are you just trying to maintain the pre-fridge result?

Cheers.
You move it in after you decide that you're ready to drink it....A good description is when the beer is at your "pre-chill result." But it is a good idea (though I rarely manage to subscribe to it ) is to chill them for a week before drinking. It helps further clear the beer.
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Old 04-12-2008, 05:23 PM   #9
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Aging does continue in the fridge, but at a slower rate. If you aren't strapped for space you should wait to move it to the fridge until your ready to drink it. I am strapped for space, so my kegs spend some of their time aging in the fridge. In bottles your biggest battle is to make sure you don't cool it down before it gets carbonated.
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Old 04-13-2008, 04:57 AM   #10
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Just wondering, does homebrew beer ever lose the green taste totally? More so for me its the "yeasty" after taste. My nutbrown after 4-5 weeks still has a slight tang to it. Commercial beer has non wat so ever.


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