Quantcast

My beer has gone bananas?

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

Help Support Homebrew Talk:

gkeusch

Well-Known Member
Joined
Nov 23, 2007
Messages
166
Reaction score
8
I did an all grain batch, 10# pale 2-row, 1# oatmeal, added less than a pound of honey in the boiler (hop adds were fairly typical - don't think the specifics have anything to do with my problem).

While drinkable, I can discern a fruity aroma that I have never experienced before and a hint of what I can only describe as a banana flavor.

I Used White Labs pitchable ale yeast (was well within the use-by date and had been properly refrigerated). Initially I thought the yeast didn't start. Turns out that it had but I didn't know it because the pail lid seal was leaking and the CO2 was getting out that way instead of through the airlock. Because I had assumed the yeast didn't start I had already procured another vial of yeast to re-pitch with. So about two days after the first pitch I opened up the pail to re-pitch, saw that I had a good head of foam, and I should have just put a new lid on but since I had the new yeast in my hot little hand I went ahead and pitched it in anyway.

I pitched the initial yeast when the wort was about 173 deg. F and it cooled down to about 60 deg. F which was average ambient temp. for the cold end of my basement in January in Michigan.

Does anybody have an idea of why I got the fruity characteristics in this batch and what I could do differently to prevent it?

Thanks!
 

Lucky Dog Brewing

Well-Known Member
Joined
Apr 10, 2007
Messages
115
Reaction score
0
Location
Fremont, Ohio
I got a fruity hint from my last DME batch that I used honey in. I never experienced it before that time so maybe that I don't though.
 

Rudeboy

Well-Known Member
Joined
Jul 19, 2007
Messages
262
Reaction score
3
Location
Edmonton, Alberta
gkeusch said:
I pitched the initial yeast when the wort was about 173 deg. F and it cooled down to about 60 deg. F which was average ambient temp. for the cold end of my basement in January in Michigan.

Does anybody have an idea of why I got the fruity characteristics in this batch and what I could do differently to prevent it?

Thanks!
A Hundred and Seventy-three Degrees !:eek:
That might be your problem.
You should pitch at fermentation temperature. I'm suprised 173 didn't cook the poor little yeasties.

Rudeboy
 

mrkristofo

Well-Known Member
Joined
Sep 25, 2007
Messages
917
Reaction score
7
Location
Behind the zion curtain
Rudeboy said:
A Hundred and Seventy-three Degrees !:eek:
That might be your problem.
You should pitch at fermentation temperature. I'm suprised 173 didn't cook the poor little yeasties.

Rudeboy
I think that's precisely what it did...stressed them out, increased ester production, hence the fruity aroma.
 

knarfks

Well-Known Member
Joined
Jan 28, 2007
Messages
271
Reaction score
1
Location
Kansas
the yeast would die at 173 degrees. If he meant 73, there shouldn't be a problem. Also what yeast was it, that might be what the flavor is coming from as well?
 

Blender

Well-Known Member
Joined
Jan 6, 2006
Messages
3,106
Reaction score
8
Location
Santa Cruz, CA.
I am pretty sure that 173 degrees will kill yeast. Are you sure that is correct? What were the types of liquid you used, hefewiezen will definately give you distinct banana flavor.
 

srm775

Well-Known Member
Joined
Aug 23, 2007
Messages
1,370
Reaction score
4
Location
IL
gkeusch said:
I did an all grain batch, 10# pale 2-row, 1# oatmeal, added less than a pound of honey in the boiler (hop adds were fairly typical - don't think the specifics have anything to do with my problem).

While drinkable, I can discern a fruity aroma that I have never experienced before and a hint of what I can only describe as a banana flavor.

I Used White Labs pitchable ale yeast (was well within the use-by date and had been properly refrigerated). Initially I thought the yeast didn't start. Turns out that it had but I didn't know it because the pail lid seal was leaking and the CO2 was getting out that way instead of through the airlock. Because I had assumed the yeast didn't start I had already procured another vial of yeast to re-pitch with. So about two days after the first pitch I opened up the pail to re-pitch, saw that I had a good head of foam, and I should have just put a new lid on but since I had the new yeast in my hot little hand I went ahead and pitched it in anyway.

I pitched the initial yeast when the wort was about 173 deg. F and it cooled down to about 60 deg. F which was average ambient temp. for the cold end of my basement in January in Michigan.

Does anybody have an idea of why I got the fruity characteristics in this batch and what I could do differently to prevent it?

Thanks!
First, cool the wort down to a reasonable temperature (less than 80° and more like 65°-70°F). I'm fairly certain that pitching yeast at 173° killed them.

Also, you should be more specific with what type of yeast you used. Did you use White Labs Hefe yeast, English Ale yeast, etc. There are lots of different types of ale yeasts and all of them create different flavor profiles.
 

Nyxator

Well-Known Member
Joined
Sep 18, 2007
Messages
205
Reaction score
1
Location
Tempe, Arizona
I'm sure he meant 73 degrees guys. If he pitched at 173, there would be no fermentation... right?
 

Donasay

Well-Known Member
Joined
Oct 12, 2007
Messages
1,563
Reaction score
11
Location
Boston
At 173 a few of the buggers could survive, but they would be terribly stressed. When he said bananna flavor the first thing that jumped into my head was a high fermentation temperature, do you happen to have the thing next to your water heater or something...
 
OP
G

gkeusch

Well-Known Member
Joined
Nov 23, 2007
Messages
166
Reaction score
8
OOPS!! Fat fingers strike again - yes it was 73 deg. F pitching temp. - sorry for that distraction!

first pitch was Burton Ale Yeast WLP023
second was Pacific Ale yeast WLP041
The reason I didn't use the same one is simple - when I got to Bell's shop (Kalamazoo Michigan, home of Oberon, it doesn't get any better than that!) I had forgotten what it was I used the first time!
 

Hagen

Well-Known Member
Joined
Feb 13, 2008
Messages
392
Reaction score
1
Location
Spotsylvania, VA
Leave it in the primary at least three days longer next time. When the vigorous fermentation subsides, the yeast will re-absorb the diacetyl. If racked off the yeast cake too soon, there won't be enough cells to make an effective clean-up crew.
 
OP
G

gkeusch

Well-Known Member
Joined
Nov 23, 2007
Messages
166
Reaction score
8
Thanks, that makes sense. I moved it to secondary after one week, and only left it there a couple of days (guess you can tell I was all out of beer!) Never realized before about the "clean-up crew". What is a good practical time to leave it in the primary for a batch like I made? Does the use of a secondary play any role with the acetyls?
 

FSR402

Well-Known Member
Lifetime Supporter
Joined
May 30, 2007
Messages
2,811
Reaction score
30
Location
Jenison, MI
gkeusch said:
Thanks, that makes sense. I moved it to secondary after one week, and only left it there a couple of days (guess you can tell I was all out of beer!) Never realized before about the "clean-up crew". What is a good practical time to leave it in the primary for a batch like I made? Does the use of a secondary play any role with the acetyls?
I only use a secondary (clearing tank) when I'm dry hopping or will be aging a beer for a few months.
Other then that I leave it in the fermenter on the yeast for 2-4 weeks depending on the beer.
 

srm775

Well-Known Member
Joined
Aug 23, 2007
Messages
1,370
Reaction score
4
Location
IL
Hagen said:
Leave it in the primary at least three days longer next time. When the vigorous fermentation subsides, the yeast will re-absorb the diacetyl. If racked off the yeast cake too soon, there won't be enough cells to make an effective clean-up crew.
That's true, but you're really only going to get a significant diacetyl production when the ferment temp is too low (hence the d-rest with lagers). At 73° the yeast shouldn't go dormant and not continue to clean up the diacetyl.

Besides, excessive diacetyl wouldn't give it a banana flavor, but rather a butter or butter-scotch flavor and a slick mouthfeel.
 

Danek

Well-Known Member
Joined
Sep 12, 2007
Messages
1,275
Reaction score
17
Location
Sheffield, UK
Donasay said:
When he said bananna flavor the first thing that jumped into my head was a high fermentation temperature.
Exactly what I thought. My first beer fermented in the high 70s or low 80s, and it was banana-riffic.
 

WBC

Well-Known Member
Joined
Jun 22, 2007
Messages
2,164
Reaction score
10
Location
La Puente, CA
German Hefewizen yeast will create a bananna flavor if fermented over 70F. I would think there are other yeast that would do the same thing.
 

Schlenkerla

Supporting Member
HBT Supporter
Joined
Apr 18, 2006
Messages
16,778
Reaction score
5,862
gkeusch said:
Thanks, that makes sense. I moved it to secondary after one week, and only left it there a couple of days (guess you can tell I was all out of beer!) Never realized before about the "clean-up crew". What is a good practical time to leave it in the primary for a batch like I made? Does the use of a secondary play any role with the acetyls?
I rarely move my beer off the primary at 1 week. I generally wait until its done cranking out CO2. ~2-3 weeks. Then off to the 2ndary for a few more weeks. I mainly do this to get clean beer if its gonna be a see-through type.

Heffe's, wheat, and pitch black beers are ok in my book coming straight from the primary and to be cloudy.

When I first started this hobby I wanted to get the max out of the fermenter. It was common to have slightly cloudy beer w/ inch still left in the bottle.

Now, I'd rather leave some behind in the fermentor and have cleaner beer and I can pour virtually the whole beer into the glass and it looks pretty clear.

When I first saw this thread I thought you where making bananna beer. I got a new HB book that has a fruit beer recipe (Goin' Ape) w/ 4 oz of bannana chips at flameout & 5 lbs of sliced bananna in the 2ndary. I've been thinkin' of trying this.

:ban: :ban: :ban: :ban:
 

cheezydemon

Well-Known Member
Joined
Jun 13, 2007
Messages
1,917
Reaction score
15
Location
The "Ville"
Regardless, you can leave it for a few months and it will likely still reduce or remove the banana flavor.

Brew a cheap APA and quit rushing things!;)
 

Hagen

Well-Known Member
Joined
Feb 13, 2008
Messages
392
Reaction score
1
Location
Spotsylvania, VA
srm775 said:
That's true, but you're really only going to get a significant diacetyl production when the ferment temp is too low (hence the d-rest with lagers). At 73° the yeast shouldn't go dormant and not continue to clean up the diacetyl.

Besides, excessive diacetyl wouldn't give it a banana flavor, but rather a butter or butter-scotch flavor and a slick mouthfeel.
Ya know, I didn't even process that when I posted. I guess I'm just used to any off-flavor esters being related to warm fast fermentation and not enough time in primary.

Either way, lower fermentation temps and a good amount of time on the primary yeast cake will keep a handle on esters in ales.
 

Mr.TC

Active Member
Joined
Feb 21, 2008
Messages
41
Reaction score
0
Location
Usaf Academy
the yeast is the problem. They produced a more acetone alcohol and that is where you are getting you fruit from. I am guessing something like Juicy Fruit? You body does the same thing when you have diabetes. You produce a type of alcohol in your blood and you breath smells like juicy fruit. just FYI
 

knarfks

Well-Known Member
Joined
Jan 28, 2007
Messages
271
Reaction score
1
Location
Kansas
That would be ketones, not acetones, for diabetics and only when blood sugar is excessively high. I have heard of the juicy fruit flavor whether it be ketone or acetone, but haven't tasted it in any of my beers, but I have tasted the banana when fermenting too warm.(intentional with heffe's)

Not trying to be an EAC, crappy medical shows have me touchy about medical misinformation
 

Mr.TC

Active Member
Joined
Feb 21, 2008
Messages
41
Reaction score
0
Location
Usaf Academy
yes thats what i meant thanks for the correction. I was thinking of nail polish remover when I wrote that.
 

Latest posts

Top