Help for a Beginner

HomeBrewTalk.com - Beer, Wine, Mead, & Cider Brewing Discussion Community.

Help Support Homebrew Talk:

Rbrew

Member
Joined
Mar 1, 2021
Messages
5
Reaction score
0
I have been reading through this forum for the past year or two and I finally got to the point where I have some questions that I can't find the answers to through a search. A little background:

I started brewing with a Picobrew Z and recently graduated to a Grainfather. I started with absolutely zero knowledge of homebrewing so I slowly worked my way through 10 brews with the Z and I think all of them were drinkable but I wouldn't consider any of them good or great beers. I finished my first brew on the Grainfather with similar results - drinkable but nothing great and not matching the flavors or style I was going for. My most recent batch had some promising results by the numbers (at least I think they are promising). I did a rising step mash with Ondea Pro and Ceremix Flex and got OG of 1.070 and FG of 1.012. This was much better conversion with less grain than I have seen so far so that seems like a win to me. This recipe was 8lb Pale Rice Malt, 3.2lb Biscuit Rice Malt, and 1.6lb Crystal Rice Malt.

Now for the part that's making me feel like I've hit a wall.

Every brew so far, including my two with the Grainfather, seem to have a metallic/sweet smell with a sweet/caramel type taste. I'm really going for a crisp, dry pale ale or IPA and what I'm getting tastes more like an Amber-ish beer . The caramel type taste seems like it could be a good thing but maybe I just don't know how to explain it properly. Like I said previously, everything has definitely been drinkable but nothing I would call a good or great beer and definitely not what I'm going for.

I'm still a novice with my terms and knowledge so maybe there's a better way most of you could explain the smell/taste with my brews but I'm hoping that someone will have some advice based on my explanation. I'm really hoping to take the next steps to produce something great but I just can't past these off-smells/flavors.

If anyone is willing to offer advice - thank you! And please ask away for more info, I will try my best to explain what I'm doing.
 

ajm163

Well-Known Member
Joined
Jan 17, 2012
Messages
252
Reaction score
66
Location
Denver
Are you creating your own recipes? I know that is allot of fun but you may want to try some kits or some well tried recipes. start simple with an an APA or a blond with a fairly simple grain bill. It will be far easier to know what the problem is if you use a known good recipe. just looking at your last recipe that seems like allot of biscuit malt and crystal rice malt???? (ill be honest i didn't even know they made that)
 
OP
R

Rbrew

Member
Joined
Mar 1, 2021
Messages
5
Reaction score
0
Are you creating your own recipes? I know that is allot of fun but you may want to try some kits or some well tried recipes. start simple with an an APA or a blond with a fairly simple grain bill. It will be far easier to know what the problem is if you use a known good recipe. just looking at your last recipe that seems like allot of biscuit malt and crystal rice malt???? (ill be honest i didn't even know they made that)
I have almost always used a recipe - I think I only created my own once. The one above was this:
Lost Coast Pale Ale - All-grain - Gluten Free Homebrewing
 

ajm163

Well-Known Member
Joined
Jan 17, 2012
Messages
252
Reaction score
66
Location
Denver
OK well someone with much more GF experience than i have will have to chime in
 

skleice

Well-Known Member
Joined
Jun 27, 2017
Messages
329
Reaction score
155
Hey Rbrew,

I STRONGLY suggest you join the Zero Tolerance Gluten Free Homebrew Club on Facebook. It is by far the best resource for GF brewing with lots of discussion from 1000+ from homebrewers and professional brewers. Also videos, meetings, blogs, etc.

As for your beer, I'd bet that you are struggling with the same issue that many of us (myself included...also using a grainfather) are experiencing with rice malt. There seems to be an off flavor that develops at the very end of fermentation. No one is sure what it is and it has been frustrating. Most describe it as a celery/earthy flavor and it is very strong and takes over all hop/malt character. I'm moving towards a millet base going forward because I've recently dumped a couple of batches that were overtaken by this flavor.

Anyway, whatever the issue. ZT is the place to go. Hopefully, I'll see you over there. Cheers!
 
OP
R

Rbrew

Member
Joined
Mar 1, 2021
Messages
5
Reaction score
0
Hey Rbrew,

I STRONGLY suggest you join the Zero Tolerance Gluten Free Homebrew Club on Facebook. It is by far the best resource for GF brewing with lots of discussion from 1000+ from homebrewers and professional brewers. Also videos, meetings, blogs, etc.

As for your beer, I'd bet that you are struggling with the same issue that many of us (myself included...also using a grainfather) are experiencing with rice malt. There seems to be an off flavor that develops at the very end of fermentation. No one is sure what it is and it has been frustrating. Most describe it as a celery/earthy flavor and it is very strong and takes over all hop/malt character. I'm moving towards a millet base going forward because I've recently dumped a couple of batches that were overtaken by this flavor.

Anyway, whatever the issue. ZT is the place to go. Hopefully, I'll see you over there. Cheers!
Thanks for the advice! Although it's a bummer that there's no quick fix it would actually make me feel better if the off flavor is not necessarily something I'm doing wrong but a product of the rice itself and it sounds like I might not be alone. Would it make sense to run the same/similar recipe with an all millet grain bill?

As for the Zero Tolerance group - I have avoided Facebook for the past few years but I might have to dust off my old account just for this.

Thanks again!
 

skleice

Well-Known Member
Joined
Jun 27, 2017
Messages
329
Reaction score
155
Thanks for the advice! Although it's a bummer that there's no quick fix it would actually make me feel better if the off flavor is not necessarily something I'm doing wrong but a product of the rice itself and it sounds like I might not be alone. Would it make sense to run the same/similar recipe with an all millet grain bill?

As for the Zero Tolerance group - I have avoided Facebook for the past few years but I might have to dust off my old account just for this.

Thanks again!
You can easily sub millet, but keep 10-15% rice or use rice hulls for filtration.

I understand the Facebook thing. I'm not a fan either. I created an account with this name and use it solely for the ZT group. No friends, no annoying pictures of people's food, political posts, meme's, etc.
 
OP
R

Rbrew

Member
Joined
Mar 1, 2021
Messages
5
Reaction score
0
You can easily sub millet, but keep 10-15% rice or use rice hulls for filtration.

I understand the Facebook thing. I'm not a fan either. I created an account with this name and use it solely for the ZT group. No friends, no annoying pictures of people's food, political posts, meme's, etc.
Good idea!
 
Top