What is wrong? Two bad brews - Home Brew Forums
Home Brew Forums > Home Brewing Beer > Beginners Beer Brewing Forum > What is wrong? Two bad brews
Cool Brewing Giveaway - Supporting Membership Drive & Discount

Reply
 
Thread Tools
Old 10-30-2008, 08:37 PM   #1
packin
Recipes 
 
Jun 2008
Posts: 7


I am very bummed out by the quality of my first two brews, and I can't pin down what exactly is wrong.

I bought the equipment kit from Austin Homebrew and I brewed my first beer in July, a hefeweizen using an AHS kit with Weinstephaner yeast. I followed John Palmer's book for the most part. I left it in the primary for 4 weeks, bottled, then tasted after 2 weeks. There was a funky taste to it that I'd describe as almost dishsoap. It was also slightly bitter, and the fruitiness I was expecting was not that big. The lack of fruitiness I can attribute to fermenting at around 65 degrees, but I'm not sure about the dishsoap taste. Overall this brew was decent I guess for my first time.

Fast forward to the end of August, I decided to brew the second kit that I had bought at the same time as the first one in July to see if I could get rid of the offending taste. This was the Texas Blonde Ale. As far as I could tell I did everything the same as the Hefe, except I only left it in the primary for 2 weeks, then transferred to secondary for an additional 2 weeks. I was fairly careful about siphoning the beer with my auto-siphon... and the only oxidization that could have resulted was from the air that gets into the auto-siphon at the very end of the siphon (like trying to get the remnants of a drink with a straw).

I bottled the blonde at the end of September and tasted it 2 weeks later. Much to my dismay it tasted like cleaning solvent, even worse than the taste I had with my Hefe. It is undrinkable as it makes the belly rumble a bit. Now, a month later, the flavor has not improved at all.

I have also recently tasted the Hefe since I saved a few, and the weird taste is still there. It's a bit worse now in fact, and not something that I'd serve to anyone except myself.

Any ideas as to where this weird taste is coming from? I should also say that I used tap water to top off both of these beers.

Thanks for any help in solving this mystery so that I can actually brew good beer!



 
Reply With Quote
Old 10-30-2008, 08:43 PM   #2
Pivzavod
Recipes 
 
Sep 2008
Brooklyn, NY
Posts: 969
Liked 4 Times on 4 Posts


Maybe you left sanitizing solution in your primary?


__________________
Old school or the new, doesnt mean a thing if your heart's not true!

Primary: 04/29 Pomegranate Nectarine Apfelwein, 05/23 Petite Saison
Secondary:
Kegs drinking: AHS Midnight Wheaten Stout 03/18 - 04/14 - 04/28,
Kegs conditioning: 01/29 - 04/29 Cranberry Apfelwein, 04/29-05/23 Petite Saison
RIP: 11/07-11/28-01/29-05/04-11/17 Flanders Brown Ale

 
Reply With Quote
Old 10-30-2008, 08:45 PM   #3
irunxcjm
Recipes 
 
Nov 2007
Olathe, KS
Posts: 136
Liked 1 Times on 1 Posts


What are you using to clean your equipment and bottles? I basically just rinse my bottles with water and sanitize with Starsan.

 
Reply With Quote
Old 10-30-2008, 08:46 PM   #4
hcarter
Recipes 
 
Oct 2008
Columbus Ohio
Posts: 341
Liked 1 Times on 1 Posts


From John Palmer's How to Brew

"Soapy flavors can caused by not washing your glass very well, but they can also be produced by the fermentation conditions. If you leave the beer in the primary fermentor for a relatively long period of time after primary fermentation is over ("long" depends on the style and other fermentation factors), soapy flavors can result from the breakdown of fatty acids in the trub. Soap is, by definition, the salt of a fatty acid; so you are literally tasting soap."
__________________
Creag `An Tuirc
A Highlander likes two things naked. The other's Scotch.
- Howard
http://www.homebrewtalk.com/f39/how-...ctorial-76101/

 
Reply With Quote
Old 10-30-2008, 09:11 PM   #5
packin
Recipes 
 
Jun 2008
Posts: 7

Quote:
Originally Posted by Pivzavod View Post
Maybe you left sanitizing solution in your primary?
I am positive that I dumped it all out as I had lurked on this forum for quite a while and read stories from people who poured their wort into the sanitizing solution. Yet, maybe the remaining solution gave it this effect?

Quote:
Originally Posted by irunxcjm View Post
What are you using to clean your equipment and bottles? I basically just rinse my bottles with water and sanitize with Starsan.
I was using the stuff that came with the AHS kit. It was a no-rinse sanitizer. The first batch I scrubbed the bottles and the rinsed them out, then sanitized. The second batch I only rinsed out, then sanitized.

Quote:
Originally Posted by hcarter View Post
From John Palmer's How to Brew

"Soapy flavors can caused by not washing your glass very well, but they can also be produced by the fermentation conditions. If you leave the beer in the primary fermentor for a relatively long period of time after primary fermentation is over ("long" depends on the style and other fermentation factors), soapy flavors can result from the breakdown of fatty acids in the trub. Soap is, by definition, the salt of a fatty acid; so you are literally tasting soap."
I know I said a soapy flavor, but it's more of like a cleaning solvent flavor. A little bit sharper than the taste of soap. Plus, I only had the blonde ale in the fermenter for 4 weeks which as I understand shouldn't have caused any problems. I've also tasted the beer directly from the bottle, and it tasted the same.

Thanks for the replies, please keep them coming.

 
Reply With Quote
Old 10-30-2008, 09:18 PM   #6
homebrewer_99
 
homebrewer_99's Avatar
Recipes 
 
Feb 2005
Atkinson (near the Quad Cities), IL
Posts: 17,781
Liked 123 Times on 95 Posts


I would look into your fermenting temps getting too high...

How to Brew - By John Palmer - Common Off-Flavors

I can vouch that if you leave an inch or so of beer on a yeast cake in a primary bucket and the temps get over 70 it will produce a solvent odor and flavor to the beer on top.
__________________
HB Bill

 
Reply With Quote
Old 10-30-2008, 10:37 PM   #7
telemarc
Recipes 
 
Oct 2008
Posts: 178

I though that the consensus here was that it is ok for your brew to come in contact with wet StarSan. I remember a few people saying this. My thinking is that it is ok if my racking tubes, cane, bottles are ok even if the StarSan has not dried. Any thoughts?

 
Reply With Quote
Old 10-30-2008, 11:11 PM   #8
carnevoodoo
Recipes 
 
May 2007
San Diego, CA
Posts: 4,260
Liked 17 Times on 16 Posts


Quote:
Originally Posted by telemarc View Post
I though that the consensus here was that it is ok for your brew to come in contact with wet StarSan. I remember a few people saying this. My thinking is that it is ok if my racking tubes, cane, bottles are ok even if the StarSan has not dried. Any thoughts?
yes, it is perfectly fine for your beer to come into contact with starsan.

 
Reply With Quote
Old 10-31-2008, 03:27 AM   #9
Austinhomebrew
Recipes 
 
Mar 2007
Posts: 1,923
Liked 120 Times on 99 Posts


Which sanitzer are you using? Are you using too much? Even though you don't have to rinse it wouldn't hurt to very briefly rinse.

Forrest

 
Reply With Quote
Old 10-31-2008, 03:41 AM   #10
Austin_
Recipes 
 
Mar 2008
Nashville, TN
Posts: 809
Liked 10 Times on 10 Posts


Quote:
Originally Posted by Austinhomebrew View Post
Which sanitzer are you using? Are you using too much? Even though you don't have to rinse it wouldn't hurt to very briefly rinse.

Forrest
I tend to agree. Even though I use the suggested amount of iodophor and it shouldn't harm me or the beer I will still rinse my stuff once. Maybe I'm just scared of chemicals, but anything that stains my counter or smells like that can't be all that great for you or beer, but then again, I could be wrong..... (IODOPHOR).



 
Reply With Quote
Reply
Thread Tools


Similar Threads
Thread Thread Starter Forum Replies Last Post
Ratio: Good brews vs Bad brews daveooph131 Beginners Beer Brewing Forum 49 09-12-2012 12:19 AM
Always the wrong place wrong time OHIOSTEVE Winemaking Forum 7 10-04-2009 07:07 PM
Many Small Brews, or Few Big Brews? Jefe General Techniques 9 11-09-2006 03:32 AM
rut row...I think I may have done something wrong wstein Beginners Beer Brewing Forum 13 07-07-2006 12:25 AM
Home Brews compared to Micro Brews Genghis77 Sampling and Critiquing and Beer Swapping 23 01-26-2006 02:30 PM


Forum Jump