why do all my beers taste like saison

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HItransplant

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well not ALL of them, but the last few batches have all tasted very saison-y.

all the batches in question have been light ales, PA or IPA. Each and every one has tasted like what they were supposed to, prior to bottling, and all have the same off flavor after bottling and a few weeks of bottle conditioning.



It must have something to do with bottling, since both beers tasted great before they went in the bottle.

anyone have this happen to them?
 

BigEd

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If you are certain that no problems existed prior to bottling then my guess is the beer was infected by bacteria/wild yeast during the bottling phase. Bottling buckets, valves, tubing, siphons as well as the bottles themselves can all be considered suspects. Check all equipment and procedures, re-clean and sanitize and replace any parts, especially plastic, that might be old, scratched or otherwise suspicious.
 
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HItransplant

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If you are certain that no problems existed prior to bottling then my guess is the beer was infected by bacteria/wild yeast during the bottling phase. Bottling buckets, valves, tubing, siphons as well as the bottles themselves can all be considered suspects. Check all equipment and procedures, re-clean and sanitize and replace any parts, especially plastic, that might be old, scratched or otherwise suspicious.

thanks ed.
is it generally recommended to replace an autosiphon and/or bottling wand as well?

Im trying to nail down a process for bottling from a corny keg, avoiding the bucket all together (I hate plastic).
 

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I agree with Ed, but one other thing to consider is fermentation temperatures. Even the "cleanest" yeast strains can get phenolic if fermented at a too highf temperature. Bacterial contamination is more likely, though, giving a "clove" like flavor.
 
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HItransplant

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I agree with Ed, but one other thing to consider is fermentation temperatures. Even the "cleanest" yeast strains can get phenolic if fermented at a too highf temperature. Bacterial contamination is more likely, though, giving a "clove" like flavor.
yooper,
thanks for the input.

I thought about fermentation temps, but had written it off since the beer tasted fine before bottling-- could conditioning temperature cause this effect after bottling?

It is a "clove" like flavor... hmmm.

Ill also look at my bottle sanitizing technique... maybe thats the secret. I use all the same plastic for racking that I do to bottle (except the wand), so I would think off flavors wouldnt be found throughout the process if the tubing/autosiphon was the culprit.
 
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HItransplant

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another observation: all the bottles Ive opened have tasted different. Might be they are maturing.. might suggest bottle cleanliness as the culprit??
 

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How do you clean/sanitize everything post-boil ? Storage is also important, since storing an otherwise clean tool wet or improperly can introduce bacteria or wild yeast. Also, how do you store your bottles ?

I'm not convinced that the problem is necessarily at the bottling phase since bacteria/wild yeast can take a long time to start to manifest itself in off-flavours. Plus, when you sample beer before bottling, you are usually more forgiving of flaws and a beer that might be tainted by something might be thought of as needing a bit more time to mature. Not saying it's your case, but it can happen.

I had a similar problem early on in my brewing career (slight clove plus uneven carbonation) and trashing every plastic equipment post-boil made it go away. Old buckets make very nice tomato pots if you cover them up with somehting you know ;)
 

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I've recently been dealing with a similar issue, and I can't yet tell you I have it whipped. I bottled three batches last weekend so I'll know soon. As you analyze the problem consider this: the fact that the infection's effects become perceptible in the bottle doesn't mean that is where the infection occurred. Imagine a huge universe of food (the residual sugars in your beer, unfermentable by your chosen yeast strain), and a very, very small microorganism in very small quantities. It may take some time, perhaps weeks, for the microorganisms to reproduce to the extent that their wastes become perceptible. So it may be possible that an infection that you first perceive AFTER bottling occurred BEFORE bottling. Not saying that happened, but that you can't exclude the possibility. That opens up the possibilities of fermentor, starter or yeast handling sanitation, etc.
 

Homercidal

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I'd bleach bomb that bottling bucket and all hoses. Make sure to take apart the spigot completely and brush it out and soak in that sanitizer solution.

Rinse thoroughly with HOT water!
 

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I'd bleach bomb that bottling bucket and all hoses. Make sure to take apart the spigot completely and brush it out and soak in that sanitizer solution.

Rinse thoroughly with HOT water!
My hoses are about .$25/foot, and my spigot is $2.95. I ditched those buggers, along with airlocks, my bottle filler, et cetera.
 

psnydez86

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My very first batch was an APA that used wl english ale yeast, beer was 1.060 and I just threw the wl vial in without making a starter like I should have.... My beer tasted like a Belgian beer with very strong Clove taste... I think my stressed under populated yeast was the culprit... Under pitching also leaves a beer susceptible to bacterial contamination which due to my inexperience in cleaning AND sanitizing procedures at the time as I only cleaned equipment with easy clean... My beer eventually developed a plastic like off flavor accompanied by even stronger clove flavor.... Another thing that could cause these off flavors is chlorine in
your water leading to chlorophenol production. I didn't throw out my tubing or fermenter or anything and all my batches following turned out great but now I am sure to clean and sanitize!
 

tugbucket

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My hoses are about .$25/foot, and my spigot is $2.95. I ditched those buggers, along with airlocks, my bottle filler, et cetera.
This my approach. I had a Pale over the course of drinking two cases of it, get to gusher stage and develop almost a sharp bitter after taste. All the plastic tubing, siphon hoses, bottle tube racking cane in the trash. All replaced for about $10.
 
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HItransplant

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How do you clean/sanitize everything post-boil ? Storage is also important, since storing an otherwise clean tool wet or improperly can introduce bacteria or wild yeast. Also, how do you store your bottles ?

I'm not convinced that the problem is necessarily at the bottling phase since bacteria/wild yeast can take a long time to start to manifest itself in off-flavours. Plus, when you sample beer before bottling, you are usually more forgiving of flaws and a beer that might be tainted by something might be thought of as needing a bit more time to mature. Not saying it's your case, but it can happen.

I had a similar problem early on in my brewing career (slight clove plus uneven carbonation) and trashing every plastic equipment post-boil made it go away. Old buckets make very nice tomato pots if you cover them up with somehting you know ;)
I've recently been dealing with a similar issue, and I can't yet tell you I have it whipped. I bottled three batches last weekend so I'll know soon. As you analyze the problem consider this: the fact that the infection's effects become perceptible in the bottle doesn't mean that is where the infection occurred. Imagine a huge universe of food (the residual sugars in your beer, unfermentable by your chosen yeast strain), and a very, very small microorganism in very small quantities. It may take some time, perhaps weeks, for the microorganisms to reproduce to the extent that their wastes become perceptible. So it may be possible that an infection that you first perceive AFTER bottling occurred BEFORE bottling. Not saying that happened, but that you can't exclude the possibility. That opens up the possibilities of fermentor, starter or yeast handling sanitation, etc.

I hadnt thought about this possibility.. Ive been using the same plastic since i started (hoses, autosiphon, bottling wand, bucket, etc). I dont brew as often as some, but ive done a dozen batches or so...

is it generally suggested that the autosiphon also be ditched?
 
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HItransplant

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My very first batch was an APA that used wl english ale yeast, beer was 1.060 and I just threw the wl vial in without making a starter like I should have.... My beer tasted like a Belgian beer with very strong Clove taste... I think my stressed under populated yeast was the culprit... Under pitching also leaves a beer susceptible to bacterial contamination which due to my inexperience in cleaning AND sanitizing procedures at the time as I only cleaned equipment with easy clean... My beer eventually developed a plastic like off flavor accompanied by even stronger clove flavor.... Another thing that could cause these off flavors is chlorine in
your water leading to chlorophenol production. I didn't throw out my tubing or fermenter or anything and all my batches following turned out great but now I am sure to clean and sanitize!
I think past batches may have had that effect (of stressed yeast), so thats an interesting suggestion. My last two batches were both under 1060 and they both got two smack packs of wyeast yeast, so i dont think thats the issue. My temperature control isnt superb, however, so I havent ruled that out. My water is let out to sit overnight before brewing and I treat with campden tabs, so I think I have the chlorine issue under control.

I dont use o2, but with the starting gravity at or below 1060, my understanding is that aeration is enough.
 
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HItransplant

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as I continue to open bottles of my last 2 batches, I am still getting odd flavors. Some more things I have observed.

If the bottle seems to have a lot of sediment, it will have more of the off flavor. In other words, if I look at 2 bottles side by side, the one with a shorter cake of stuff at the bottom will taste better (less off flavor).

The majority of flavor is early on after pouring... if I let the beer sit in the glass, the flavor deminishes as the beer warms/degasses.

still trying to figure this one out.
any help appreciated.

HIt
 

jfr1111

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as I continue to open bottles of my last 2 batches, I am still getting odd flavors. Some more things I have observed.

If the bottle seems to have a lot of sediment, it will have more of the off flavor. In other words, if I look at 2 bottles side by side, the one with a shorter cake of stuff at the bottom will taste better (less off flavor).

The majority of flavor is early on after pouring... if I let the beer sit in the glass, the flavor deminishes as the beer warms/degasses.

still trying to figure this one out.
any help appreciated.

HIt
This, imho, confirms that you have something "wild" going on post-boil. Wild yeasts tend to be much more phenolic than domestic brewing yeast, throwing out medicinal flavours (band-aid, burnt rubber, clove). They also tend to be very slow flocculators as a whole. The bottles which have a tighter, more compact yeast cakes have probably less wild yeast in them, hence lesser clove flavours. Are the better tasting bottles less carbonated ?

Also, warmer serving temperatures and less carbonation can lend a rounder, maltier profile to the beer. If you serve your beer very cold and it is overcarbonated, the acidic/sharp bite of the dissolved CO2 can enhance the clove flavours and also help lift those aromas to the nose more readily via degassing.

Trash everything plastic that touches beer post-boil, control fermentation temperatures as well as possible, brew something low gravity and pitch healthy yeast on the next batch. If the problem is still there, we can begin wondering about other factors, most notably water.
 

JonnyJumpUp

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This, imho, confirms that you have something "wild" going on post-boil. Wild yeasts tend to be much more phenolic than domestic brewing yeast, throwing out medicinal flavours (band-aid, burnt rubber, clove). They also tend to be very slow flocculators as a whole. The bottles which have a tighter, more compact yeast cakes have probably less wild yeast in them, hence lesser clove flavours. Are the better tasting bottles less carbonated ?

Also, warmer serving temperatures and less carbonation can lend a rounder, maltier profile to the beer. If you serve your beer very cold and it is overcarbonated, the acidic/sharp bite of the dissolved CO2 can enhance the clove flavours and also help lift those aromas to the nose more readily via degassing.

Trash everything plastic that touches beer post-boil, control fermentation temperatures as well as possible, brew something low gravity and pitch healthy yeast on the next batch. If the problem is still there, we can begin wondering about other factors, most notably water.
I agree that this sounds like a mild infection. I'd rethink my sanitizing... I really like star-san. Switching up sanitizers will help if you happen to have introduced something that is resistant to what you are currently using. Un-likely but possible. I'd use one-step to wash everything, bleach anything that wasn't stainless and then star-san. Dont use bleach on stainless as it is not good for it. I would also relegate all my current hoses for non-beer contact uses and get new ones for any that touch beer.

One thing that helps to keep bottles clean is to rinse them immediately after you empty them. Then you don't have mold growing while they are waiting to be filled again.
 

akuyper

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I am agreeing with those who are saying mild infection. I have been having similar issues with my recent batches and am just now realizing that the off-flavor and unwanted aroma I am getting is similar to band-aid, aka Brett infection. These flavors have only become present after a couple weeks in the bottle and taste amazing coming out of secondary. I control fermentation temp very well and use Mr. Malty for pitching rates. In addition, most of my batches become over carbonated about 1.5 months after bottling. I am also going to go ahead and toss all of my post-boil plastic/vinyl that I use. I'll try to report back after I bottle my next batch to see if this helps.
 
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HItransplant

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This, imho, confirms that you have something "wild" going on post-boil. Wild yeasts tend to be much more phenolic than domestic brewing yeast, throwing out medicinal flavours (band-aid, burnt rubber, clove). They also tend to be very slow flocculators as a whole. The bottles which have a tighter, more compact yeast cakes have probably less wild yeast in them, hence lesser clove flavours. Are the better tasting bottles less carbonated ?

Also, warmer serving temperatures and less carbonation can lend a rounder, maltier profile to the beer. If you serve your beer very cold and it is overcarbonated, the acidic/sharp bite of the dissolved CO2 can enhance the clove flavours and also help lift those aromas to the nose more readily via degassing.

Trash everything plastic that touches beer post-boil, control fermentation temperatures as well as possible, brew something low gravity and pitch healthy yeast on the next batch. If the problem is still there, we can begin wondering about other factors, most notably water.
YESSSSS... you are describing every aspect of my problem.

I agree that this sounds like a mild infection. I'd rethink my sanitizing... I really like star-san. Switching up sanitizers will help if you happen to have introduced something that is resistant to what you are currently using. Un-likely but possible. I'd use one-step to wash everything, bleach anything that wasn't stainless and then star-san. Dont use bleach on stainless as it is not good for it. I would also relegate all my current hoses for non-beer contact uses and get new ones for any that touch beer.

One thing that helps to keep bottles clean is to rinse them immediately after you empty them. Then you don't have mold growing while they are waiting to be filled again.
I too love starsan, and wash my bottles religiously after pouring. Im wondering if my bottles are the issue, however, as the problem is not evenly distributed.

I am agreeing with those who are saying mild infection. I have been having similar issues with my recent batches and am just now realizing that the off-flavor and unwanted aroma I am getting is similar to band-aid, aka Brett infection. These flavors have only become present after a couple weeks in the bottle and taste amazing coming out of secondary. I control fermentation temp very well and use Mr. Malty for pitching rates. In addition, most of my batches become over carbonated about 1.5 months after bottling. I am also going to go ahead and toss all of my post-boil plastic/vinyl that I use. I'll try to report back after I bottle my next batch to see if this helps.
i too will do the same.

im also not going to bottle my next batch :)

do you guys recommend replacing my autosiphon as well?
 
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