Altbier taste like hefe

Homebrew Talk - Beer, Wine, Mead, & Cider Brewing Discussion Forum

Help Support Homebrew Talk - Beer, Wine, Mead, & Cider Brewing Discussion Forum:

This site may earn a commission from merchant affiliate links, including eBay, Amazon, and others.

hilljack13

That's what she said!
HBT Supporter
Joined
Jun 29, 2023
Messages
910
Reaction score
1,222
Location
AL
Pulled a sample of my altbier. Fermented with K97, recommended from the recipe as a German ale yeast. The taste is almost exact to a hefe. Is this normal for this type of yeast? If that is the case I would have just rather brewed another hefe as I do like them. Sorta disappointed in the altbier.
 
Yeah, sounds like it wasn't the right yeast choice, and if it was done a little warm that particular yeast's flavors will be even stronger.

I have never used that yeast so I can't say what the characteristics are exactly. But it's the first thing I'd be looking at.
 
yes, same beer from link. I only kegged it a few days week ago and have it in the fridge to condition. I noticed the same thing when i kegged and was hoping the taste would settle out. Temps were steady at 67-67F

Screenshot 2024-05-31 074119.png
 
About all you can do is try a different yeast next time... hopefully what you have tastes good even if it's not what you wanted. I do know that feeling of disappointment.
True, first time using this yeast. I remember having some German ales when I lived there, but that has been a while. I had expectations of something different is all. Still very drinkable.
 
yes, same beer from link. I only kegged it a few days week ago and have it in the fridge to condition. I noticed the same thing when i kegged and was hoping the taste would settle out. Temps were steady at 67-67F

A week isn't enough to know whether it'll get better. Do not dump it. Give it another few weeks or more. You may be surprised. I bottle condition, but I've learned to not open a first bottle until 3wks. 2wks can be ok, but it's better at 3.
 
There's a guy in my brew club who routinely wins medals and has won 2 BoS with his K97 Altbier. It's definitely not the wrong yeast. Personally, I'm not a huge fan of it for Altbier, but it should make a fine one.
 
What part of a weizen are you tasting? Esters, clove, mouthfeel or general yeastiness? K-97 can be hard to drop, but you'd notice that in the glass. I'm not a fan of this yeast due to the snow globe effect, but I tend to agree you might have a cross contamination if you taste phenols or strong banana esters. Esters might dissipate over time, phenols are there to stay.
 
What part of a weizen are you tasting? Esters, clove, mouthfeel or general yeastiness? K-97 can be hard to drop, but you'd notice that in the glass. I'm not a fan of this yeast due to the snow globe effect, but I tend to agree you might have a cross contamination if you taste phenols or strong banana esters. Esters might dissipate over time, phenols are there to stay.
My descriptions are not the best. I would have to say it has that fruity sorta banana taste, the typical hefe but not near as strong as a a purpose brew hefe.
 
It kind of reminds me of stressed fermentation then. I've had that before with strains that shouldn't do that typically either (e.g. Nottingham), but I underpitched and very poorly controlled temperature. I'm not into pressure fermenting so I don't know whether you added too much pressure or pitched too little yeast. It could also be an old or bad batch.
That said, the ester you take for banana might also be another ester that isn't far off hence your perception, but I'd still regard that as stressed fermentation. I've only really stressed K-97 once in a mini test and I mostly got rubbing alcohol and canned corn flavour (it was 50% corn). Those flavours really overpowered the rest though, so I don't remember anything else. It did tell me that this yeast doesn't like deviation from the optimal conditions. Bread yeast would probably have fared better on that test.
 
Just checked the date, good till 3/2025. Haven't had any issues before with dates getting close to what was printed so might be a bad batch. If so I have 5 (not 4 as previously posted) packs to do something with. Pressure rose naturally during fermentation and hit 12 PSI before dropping to 0 after fermentation was done. Didn't really carb up too much either.
 
I was just throwing it out there. I've never really had issues with dry yeast past their due dates if they were kept cold. Still, manufacturing can go wrong.

Given a quick Google search 12 PSI should be fine. Did you hit that number very early on? Perhaps too early? I'm not sure if this particular yeast is just too finicky and will not deal with any kind of pressure early on or other sightly suboptimal conditions. Maybe others have more info on that.
 
I think the psi hit 12 after a few days. I can't remember fully, but I did purge out the O2. When I did I didn't leave the pressure in but let it rise naturally.
 
I've used a few so-called German ale yeasts and can't say I've been mad keen on any of them, usually just don't seem to leave the beer dry enough. My most recent batches were made with k97 on the basis it at least has good attenuation stats, even if it takes an age to drop out.
Last one I made, I used a Fermzilla, pressure around 12 psi, temperature 18 Celcius. Left it two weeks, cold crashed (lagered?) another four in the vain hope it would clear. Forced some on a German mate who is from Dusseldorf. He said it's authentic, tastes just like Uerige, which it does, a bit, at a stretch :)
Anyway, the point I'm trying to make is there doesn't seem, to me, to be anything wrong with the yeast or the process you used.
 
My descriptions are not the best. I would have to say it has that fruity sorta banana taste, the typical hefe but not near as strong as a a purpose brew hefe.
Your beer is infected with something else. K 97 doesn't produce banana.
 
Altbier with k97. Fermented at 60°. Best beer I’ve brewed. Recipe was Jamil’s cowboy alt recipe. Nothing like a Hefe.
Mine hovered around 67-68F in the closet. At least it was constant. I'll have to keep in mind to do a lower temp. Maybe try a 1 gal and see if that helps.
 
Back
Top