First Batch Tastes Like Cider?!!??!

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xt-lee

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Hello,

I have a question regarding my first batch of beer. I used Coopers Mexican Cerveza extract kit with 1.2k of Dextrose. The expiry date was not passed. I used filtered water.

I made sure I always sterilized my equipment. I used the 2 step fermentation with glass carboy. My OG was 1,044 and the FG was 1,008. The beer was always around 22c.

I didn't take excessive time to bottle nor did I splash by beer.

It has been just over 2 weeks and I decided to try a first beer. The beer has carbonation and foam when poured.

The problem is the taste. I find the beer to have a cider taste. Normally I like beer nice and cold, but this beer seems even worse when cold and I have a hard time drinking it. However it does contain alcohol as I did get a boot from it.:drunk:

What causes this cider or appley taste?
 

Blender

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The taste is probably associated with the use of the dextrose. You will make far better beer using malt extract.
 
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xt-lee

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Malt extract eh...hmmmm Isn't the kit mostly malt?

I was reading somewhere that the taste could be caused by stale extract?

Will the taste go away or will it stay?
 

ScoutMan

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Exactly, post your recipe, but odds are there is too much sugar. More than 20% dextrose in a recipe will end up cidery. Might consider adding fruit if you just can't stomach it as is. I did a Canadian Pilsner once that wound up this way and became SWMBO's favorite beer with the addition of huckleberries....
 
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xt-lee

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The retailer is telling me to ignore the kit instructions and follow their's. The sell me a 1.5kg bag of dextrose and tell me to remove 1 an 1/3 cup for priming.

I just started the Coopers Brewmaster IPA kit. The kit called for 500g of Malt extract and 300g of dextrose. I used the 1.5k bag of dextrose and removed 500g as well as the 1 and 1/3 cup, then put the rest into the mix and ended up with a OG of 1,044.

I hope I didn't ruin this batch by adding too much sugar.
 

Blender

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My first beer making journey was a Cooper's kit with 2 lb of dextrose and one can of extract. It tasted bad but some of that must have been due to my inexperience because I can't beleive that people like the taste. What temps are you fermenting at?
 
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xt-lee

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I may be a bit over doing it with the "cider" statement, but I just tried another and the only way I can explain it is an apple-ish flavor. As if a bit of apple juice was added to the glass. Although my dad loves it and wants to take it off my hands right now...LOL:mug:

As I said my temps were always around 22c even at the start of fermentation.
 

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I would fault the sugar first and then the slightly high fermenting temps (ambient + heat generated with fermentation) along with the kit yeast, if you used the kit ueast.
 
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xt-lee

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My concerns are... will the taste change say in 2 more weeks?

Also did I add too much sugar to my new batch of IPA beer?

Should I ignore the retailer's instructions? They are the largest in Canada apparently for beer and wine making equipment.
 

redpale

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xt-lee said:
My concerns are... will the taste change say in 2 more weeks?
I'm still very new myself and have read more than I've brewed - but Papazian (in his book) blames cidery flavors squarely on the use of too much dextrose. I doubt the flavors will go away over time but I'm guessing they may diminish slightly.

I've figured from what I've read so far to stay away from added sugar for the most part, unless you're shooting for a really light color/body while still retaining a significant ABV.

I did try a beer like that, but used a lb. of honey instead of dextrose. That batch is still conditioning, so I'll let you know how it turns out :confused:
 

SteveM

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It is most likely the sugar (dextrose). Even if your retailer is the biggest in the world, he is steering you wrong. Don't use it any more except for priming at bottling time. If you are an extract brewer, use all extract for fermenting from now on.

Remeber the German beer purity laws: Malted barley, yeast, hops and water. Nothing about dextrose. Keep that in mind as a rule of thumb (not a law, a guideline) and try to approximate it. Be suspicious of anyone who pushes you in a different direction.
 

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That's right- I NEVER use sugar in my beers (except for priming). Never, ever. Yes, it's cheaper and it'll boost the alcohol content cheaply. But, then you'll get a cidery beer. If you used 500 gm of malt extract, and 300 gm of sugar, your beer is nearly half sugar! I use about 4 ounces of corn sugar for priming, but that's it.

Some people do use honey, molasses, sugar, etc, and have done so sucessfully. It's just something that I don't like the taste of at all.

For your next batch, I suggest you post your recipe on the board, and ask for suggestions. You'll get some experienced brewers telling you if it's something that will be good, or not so good. Also, post your instructions, so we can help you tweak it.

Lorena
 

SteveM

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Oh...I forgot to mention that, yes, it could get better over time. This is only a guess, though, based on the fact that most brews get better over time. Giving it away to someone who likes it might be the best bet in the end anyway.
 

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I'm going to sound very un-EAC, but there ARE some circumstances where the addition of corn sugar to a batch is perfectly fine. Unfortunately, this really isn't one of them.

However, if you're making something with a huge OG that you want to still finish reasonably dry (like an Imperial IPA), adding some corn sugar is perfectly acceptable within limitations (~10% of total fermentables). For most "regular" beers, though - corn sugar should really only be used for priming.
 
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xt-lee

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Now I am worried! I just finished bottling another batch (Morgan's Drought) and started a new one (Coopers Brewmaster IPA). The IPA one has 500g of light dry malt extract and what seems to be around 700g of dextrose.

I hope I didn't create 2 more cidery concoctions.

:confused:
 

SteveM

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I could see you were heading that way with your earlier posts, which is why I jumped in. Hope for the best, is my advice.
 
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xt-lee

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Thanks for all the advice, I'll let you all know it turns out.

Most kits ask for dextrose or sometimes dry malt. What should I use in place of the dextrose when they ask for 1kg?
 

the_bird

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xt-lee said:
Thanks for all the advice, I'll let you all know it turns out.

Most kits ask for dextrose or sometimes dry malt. What should I use in place of the dextrose when they ask for 1kg?
Use a kilo of DME.
 
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xt-lee

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I meant to ask about the priming sugar also.

In the kits I've used, they call for 8 grams per liter of dextrose for priming. I was using 1 & 1/3 cups which is roughly 300g. Is that ok?

The caps make a louder than usual pop when opening, but I didn't see any explode....yet!
 

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I (and most people) use 3/4 cup of corn sugar for priming with consistently good results. If you use DME for priming, use 1 1/4 cups; if using straight dextrose, I'd back off to the 3/4 cup.
 

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xt-lee said:
I meant to ask about the priming sugar also.

In the kits I've used, they call for 8 grams per liter of dextrose for priming. I was using 1 & 1/3 cups which is roughly 300g. Is that ok?

The caps make a louder than usual pop when opening, but I didn't see any explode....yet!
I use 4 ounces for priming 5 gallons. Those beers are pretty well carbonated, which I like. I don't know how much 4 ounces is by cups- maybe 2/3 cup or so? I don't know the metric system very well- I'm guessing that it's 125 grams?
 
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xt-lee

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I couldn't resist trying another beer from the "Cidery" batch...lol
What could I do to this "Cidery" batch to change it's flavor? Someone mentioned adding fruit? How would I go about changing the flavor?

I'd rather change it's flavor than watch it all go down the drain pint by pint!!! :tank:
 

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xt-lee said:
I couldn't resist trying another beer from the "Cidery" batch...lol
What could I do to this "Cidery" batch to change it's flavor? Someone mentioned adding fruit? How would I go about changing the flavor?

I'd rather change it's flavor than watch it all go down the drain pint by pint!!! :tank:
Well, there isn't much you can do, since it's bottled. You can age it a bit, and it might be a little more drinkable in a month or longer. You can also drink it very, very cold and that can mask some of the off-flavors. If you used 300 grams of priming sugar, I would suggest keeping all the bottles cold anyway. That's about twice as much priming sugar as should be used, if you're doing 5 gallon batches. (If it's a 10 gallon batch, never mind ;)

If you have a friend who likes this beer (and I did have a friend who liked my one not-so-good batch), encourage them to drink up!

Maybe try it with a squeeze of lime? People do that with Corona and it seems to improve the flavor. Otherwise, I'm out of ideas.
 

Rodanrodanadana

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xt-lee said:
Should I ignore the retailer's instructions? They are the largest in Canada apparently for beer and wine making equipment.
Most of the stores in Kingston concentrate on wine, and they don't seem to know too much about that either. If it was a beer supplies only store, I would be worried that they told you to use sugar. Like the stores around me, they may only carry the canned kits and no DME, so without the sugar you couldn't use their kit.

It's the same with the wine, they just use the champagne yeast because they want it to always work, make alcohol and to save money. People making the canned beer kits may use sugar over malt extract to save money.

Maybe the retailers know that a good proportion of people who get serious about the hobby soon stop using the canned kits anyhow, so the primary market for these stores are the people who want to make cheap beer rather than good beer? I don't know. I am not at that point yet :)


Put it away somewhere until the summer. Perhaps a really hot day will improve its charm.
 

david_42

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There is another possibility: Acetaldehyde - "A flavor of green apples or freshly cut pumpkin ... needs more time to condition."

Dextrose is much less likely to produce a cidery flavor than sucrose (table sugar)
 
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xt-lee

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Rodanrodanadana said:
Most of the stores in Kingston concentrate on wine, and they don't seem to know too much about that either. If it was a beer supplies only store, I would be worried that they told you to use sugar. Like the stores around me, they may only carry the canned kits and no DME, so without the sugar you couldn't use their kit.

It's the same with the wine, they just use the champagne yeast because they want it to always work, make alcohol and to save money. People making the canned beer kits may use sugar over malt extract to save money.

Maybe the retailers know that a good proportion of people who get serious about the hobby soon stop using the canned kits anyhow, so the primary market for these stores are the people who want to make cheap beer rather than good beer? I don't know. I am not at that point yet :)


Put it away somewhere until the summer. Perhaps a really hot day will improve its charm.
Most people around here (Montreal, Canada) brew cheap beer it seems. They want a recipe that's cheap, fast and tastes reasonable.

I e-mailed Coopers and they wrote me back. The gave me quite a bit of information and left me thinking about it after. One thing they said was that my retailer doesn't seem to be in tune with my needs and I couldn't agree more.

I on the other hand have come to enjoy the taste of beer. Since Sleeman came on the market here, all we had were the domestic brown bottle piss water.

My favorite is Sleeman Drought and I'd like to reproduce it, or clone it if you will. Anybody have a recipe for that kind of beer?

I will hold off at least another month before trying the beer again.
 
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xt-lee

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Just thought I'd post a follow up to my batch of cider! I tried one yesterday which would be the 30 day in bottles mark.

The beer seems much better. It's less bitter, has much less appley taste however, I still taste some of it in there. I'd say another 2 or 3 weeks and this batch will be great. As is, it's quite drinkable and friends seem to like it. I guess I'm just too picky!

I'll post more info on the next taste test, if they are not all gone by then! :mug: :drunk:
 

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xt-lee said:
Just thought I'd post a follow up to my batch of cider! I tried one yesterday which would be the 30 day in bottles mark.

The beer seems much better. It's less bitter, has much less appley taste however, I still taste some of it in there. I'd say another 2 or 3 weeks and this batch will be great. As is, it's quite drinkable and friends seem to like it. I guess I'm just too picky!

I'll post more info on the next taste test, if they are not all gone by then! :mug: :drunk:
NOTE TO BREWER: Friends like anything!!!!According to my friends I've never made a bad beer. And yes we all make some bad beer, some I've made are so nasty, but I have a beer designation and I keep them in my beer locker as "Neighbor Beer":tank:
 
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xt-lee

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AHEM! Bumpity bump bump! lol

I may or may not be crazy! But, I am not sure if my beer is getting better or if I'm just liking it now...lol Anyway there are only 6 left for that batch. I'm keeping a couple to see what happens over the next month or 2.

My 2nd batch, The Morgan's Drought seems bitter with no apple taste. I'll wait a bit more for that one to condition. It's already over a month.

Now I'm looking into making a Budweiser clone recipe from DME. When they say .5g of hops for steeping, what do you steep with, a tea steeper?
 
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