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NSMikeD

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I am almost embarrassed to admit this, but figured I'd share as lesson learned. I think most of us start by using clone recipes of beers we like that we pull of the internet. Often we don't know why all the ingredients are being used since we have so many more variables about which to worry.

Recently, I brewed a SNPA clone from a recipe on the net. 2.5 gallon BIAB. Came close on the numbers, beer smith said it was right on target for the profile. Two weeks in the fermentor with a 3 day dry hop addition and then primed and kegged for two more weeks before cold crashing and tapping.

All was good until that first pint. SOUR!!!! MY BEER WAS INFECTED!!! I SUCK AT BREWING.

Or, so I thought. I spent hair pulling days researching off flavors and concluding lactic acid from bacteria ruined the beer. Only thing was, I really liked the beer and it reminded me of other micro brews I liked.

But since I was not expecting this pronounced flavor, I was blocked from the obvious and more concerned with the shame of liking bad beer and doubting my sanitization procedures.

The sourness I tasted was a delightful grapefruit citrus. And sure enough, I looked at my hop schedule and then went to a Cascade fact sheet and there was the magic word "grapefruit".

I went from poser to brewmaster over one word. lol

I had tweaked the recipe a little and was seeking to add a lot of aroma - plus I assumed the flavor would be a generic "spice" that I didn't realize I was adding a nice pronounced grapefruit note to the beer.

So, I am changing the recipe name in my BeerSmith to a better description and looking forward to making this beer again (a few friends said they really liked it, and went for refills passing up the Toasted Lager bottles that were in my fridge).

Trust your tastebuds and your procedures,
Use the ingredient facts sheets on the internet, they are awesome, and most importantly:


RDWHAHB


Anyone else care to share any similar experiences with the new folks?
 

Sillybilly

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When one of my first batches, which was also a SNPA clone, was done fermenting and ready to be bottled, I opened the lid of the bucket, stuck my head in there and took a huge whiff... WOW, that will wake you up! I thought it was an infection until I found online I was not the only person to have done that.
 

kev211

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When one of my first batches, which was also a SNPA clone, was done fermenting and ready to be bottled, I opened the lid of the bucket, stuck my head in there and took a huge whiff... WOW, that will wake you up! I thought it was an infection until I found online I was not the only person to have done that.
Thatll wake you up? Thatll knock you out!! haha I too have done the Co2 whiff. Now I do it to my friends to prank them. "Hey you wanna go smell fermenting beer? It smells great! Go stick your head in that chest freezer over there and inhale..." :ban:

OP good for you for sticking it out and doing some research instead of just dumping it. We have all been in similar situations and learning to be patient and troubleshoot will help you in the long run. Just curious though... How much cascade did you use?
 
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NSMikeD

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...... Just curious though... How much cascade did you use?
2.5 gallon batch:


.20 oz Magnum 12% 60 min
.38 oz Pearle 8.8% 60 min
.50 oz Cascade 6% at 15 minutes
.38 oz Cascade 6% at flame out
.38 oz Cascade 6% 3 day dry hop
 

Pappers_

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The sourness I tasted was a delightful grapefruit citrus. And sure enough, I looked at my hop schedule and then went to a Cascade fact sheet and there was the magic word "grapefruit".
This brings up perception issues and how our experiences impact our perceptions. This comes up here at HBT quite a bit, where someone will say my beer is 'watery' or my IPA is too 'bitter', when they don't really mean watery or bitter, but rather thin-bodied or astringent.

I'm pretty certain that the Cascade hops provided no sourness to your beer. Instead, the flavor and aroma of the Cascades reminded you of grapefruit, and your experience in eating grapefruit leads you to associate that flavor/aroma with being sour, hence you perceive sourness in your beer.
Thanks for bringing this up, its a good conversation topic.
 

kev211

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Huh, not to scare you back into infection, but I have a hard time believing that using cascade in that amount would result in so much grapefruit that one might discern it as being soured. But who knows? Palates detect different tastes in different ways so it may be just grapefruity. I wouldnt skimp on the sanitizing process for your next batch just to be sure that if it was infected that you killed that bug
 
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Huh, not to scare you back into infection, but I have a hard time believing that using cascade in that amount would result in so much grapefruit that one might discern it as being soured. But who knows? Palates detect different tastes in different ways so it may be just grapefruity. I wouldnt skimp on the sanitizing process for your next batch just to be sure that if it was infected that you killed that bug
I believe it. I've been palate-confused myself. Too much Amarillo Dry-Hop: A Cautionary Tale
 

kev211

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Make an all-amarillo IPA :) Grapefruit!


Or simcoe (I think the cat peed in my beer!).
See I get more lemon/lime from amarillo.

And luckily Im not one of the people who think simcoe smells like cat pee. :D

But thats the beauty of hops and palates. Everyone gets something different. My last award winning beer I took into the office to share with co-workers. It was an APA with citra and amarillo. I got everything from orange, to lemon, lime, grapefruit, and even pineapple. So people taste things different, which I think is fun
 

RM-MN

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See I get more lemon/lime from amarillo.

And luckily Im not one of the people who think simcoe smells like cat pee. :D

But thats the beauty of hops and palates. Everyone gets something different. My last award winning beer I took into the office to share with co-workers. It was an APA with citra and amarillo. I got everything from orange, to lemon, lime, grapefruit, and even pineapple. So people taste things different, which I think is fun
What? You didn't notice the mango flavor? Try again!:ban::mug:
 

RM-MN

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The sourness I tasted was a delightful grapefruit citrus. And sure enough, I looked at my hop schedule and then went to a Cascade fact sheet and there was the magic word "grapefruit".
If you like how Cascade gives you the grapefruit, try a batch dry hopped with a Cascade and Citra. The Citra hop seems to accentuate the grapefruit.:ban:
 

Terek

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if you are making a clone beer, and you change the recipe, then dont expect it to taste anything like what you are trying to clone. People put a lot of effort into tweeking there clones to be spot on.
 

csurowiec

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It's interesting how people's perceptions can be so different. I've used Cascade in a SMaSH beer and never thought grapefruit when drinking it. Now Amarillo I think is very strong grapefruit.
My favorite was a description someone wrote about a single hop Simcoe beer that they said "smelled like your cat ate your weed then peed on your Christmas tree."
 
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NSMikeD

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Tapped the John Palmers Elevenses grain/extract kit yesterday. I really love the subtle flavor by toasting the oats before mashing. Just the type of depth of flavors that take a basic craft beer up a notch without over doing it.


I prime/naturally keg my ales and condition at 63° - 68°*for about a month, then tapped them for 24 hours and serve at 47.5° (warmest setting on the DIY kegerator). Seems to do the job.

This is my second brew in a row that I can honestly say I really like and enjoy as much as or more than commercial beers.

I found another SNPA clone recipe (similar but with some changes - but still dominated by the late cascade additions) and brewing that tonight. Looking forward to see how this one compares to the grapefruit forward beer in my OP.
 

masskrug

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Huh, not to scare you back into infection, but I have a hard time believing that using cascade in that amount would result in so much grapefruit that one might discern it as being soured. But who knows? Palates detect different tastes in different ways so it may be just grapefruity. I wouldn't skimp on the sanitizing process for your next batch just to be sure that if it was infected that you killed that bug
I was thinking the same thing.
 
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