Quantcast

Yeast off flavors

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

Help Support Homebrew Talk:

punk_rockin2001

Well-Known Member
Joined
Jan 31, 2009
Messages
149
Reaction score
3
Location
Charleston, IL
I've bottled 3 batches that have all used versions of Nottingham yeast and they all have very similar fruity flavors. The "worst" in particular was a high gravity barley wine that tastes and smells very very fruity. Banana in particular. The flavor is not offensive, but strange. When you open a bottle of the barley wine it smells like wine much more than a beer. Has anyone else had anything like this?
 

Parker36

Well-Known Member
Joined
Sep 22, 2007
Messages
4,740
Reaction score
24
Location
Lesotho
Probably high fermentation temps - that is normally where you get the fruity/bananery (is that a word?) esters. What are you fermenting at?
 

Yooper

Ale's What Cures You!
Staff member
Admin
Mod
Lifetime Supporter
Joined
Jun 4, 2006
Messages
74,337
Reaction score
11,963
Location
UP/Snowbird in Florida
Usually, the fruity flavors you describe come from fermenting at too-high a temperature. It's a more common problem in the summer. Under 70 degrees (fermenting temperature, not the ambient air temperature), nottingham usually gives a very clean beer with very little fruitiness. As the fermentation temperature increases, you definitely get more esters (fruitiness). I've used nottingham as low as 59 degrees with great results, but have noticed that it does get fruity after it gets above 68 degrees or so.

I have a stick-on thermometer on the outside of the fermenter to monitor actual fermentation temperature. I've had people tell me that their fermentating temperature is as much as 10 degrees over the ambient air temperature, in a very active fermentation. I've had it as much as 7-8 degrees higher inside the carboy as outside of it!
 
OP
P

punk_rockin2001

Well-Known Member
Joined
Jan 31, 2009
Messages
149
Reaction score
3
Location
Charleston, IL
The room that the fermenter was in was between 50 and 55 degrees during primary and secondary. I thought maybe the room was actually too cold, but its possible the temp inside was actually too hot? Its interesting you say that because the first 2 days of primary the carboy was warm to the touch. So next time I do a high gravity brew should I put the fermenter in an ice bath?
 

Yooper

Ale's What Cures You!
Staff member
Admin
Mod
Lifetime Supporter
Joined
Jun 4, 2006
Messages
74,337
Reaction score
11,963
Location
UP/Snowbird in Florida
The room that the fermenter was in was between 50 and 55 degrees during primary and secondary. I thought maybe the room was actually too cold, but its possible the temp inside was actually too hot? Its interesting you say that because the first 2 days of primary the carboy was warm to the touch. So next time I do a high gravity brew should I put the fermenter in an ice bath?
Not necessarily. You can buy a cheap stick-on thermometer, and monitor the temperature that way (an aquarium themometer works great, if you can't find a dedicated brew thermometer) and only put it in the ice bath if it's too warm. If the room was 50 degrees, though, there is no way the fermenter should have been over about 60-65, though. It wouldn't have been warm to the touch. That's very weird!
 

jonbrout

Well-Known Member
Joined
Jan 3, 2009
Messages
137
Reaction score
4
Just a thought...I'm not sure it is relevant but are those temps just in the daytime or monitored throughout the night as well? Couldn't large temp changes stress the yeast and produce off flavors?
 

Dr_Deathweed

Well-Known Member
Joined
Jul 20, 2007
Messages
2,377
Reaction score
49
Location
Bryan
I have had this happen to me as well. 2 carboy's side by side in a cooler, being held at 65deg, both with Nottingham yeast (though different recipes). One had a strong banana flavor, and the other turned out nice and clean like you would expect from notty.

I just figured it was a fluke and have never had the problem again. Interesting to hear that someone else had a similar problem.
 

RCCOLA

Well-Known Member
Joined
Nov 1, 2008
Messages
1,082
Reaction score
121
Location
Northwest Arkansas
I had a batch fermented w/ notty @58F end up with a twang to it.After about 4wks. in the bottle it went away.How long has your beer been in the bottle?
 

garae10

Member
Joined
Jun 1, 2010
Messages
16
Reaction score
0
Location
Monterrey
I've bottled 3 batches that have all used versions of Nottingham yeast and they all have very similar fruity flavors. The "worst" in particular was a high gravity barley wine that tastes and smells very very fruity. Banana in particular. The flavor is not offensive, but strange. When you open a bottle of the barley wine it smells like wine much more than a beer. Has anyone else had anything like this?
YESSSSSSSSSSSS

I just checked the FG of a Winter Warmer (ABV 8.9%)
The temp of the room was lower than 70°F, and i just smelled it and tasted it and it reminded me pretty much to bourbon with banana. LOL :cross: :D
I hope that the funky flavors go away within four weeks like the last post on this thread. Or i will give this to my friends and thell them that it's a banana beer LOL :fro::p:mug:
 

RCCOLA

Well-Known Member
Joined
Nov 1, 2008
Messages
1,082
Reaction score
121
Location
Northwest Arkansas
YESSSSSSSSSSSS

I just checked the FG of a Winter Warmer (ABV 8.9%)
The temp of the room was lower than 70°F, and i just smelled it and tasted it and it reminded me pretty much to bourbon with banana. LOL :cross: :D
I hope that the funky flavors go away within four weeks like the last post on this thread. Or i will give this to my friends and thell them that it's a banana beer LOL :fro::p:mug:
If you're bottle carbing, let it carb up and then stick it in the fridge to let the yeast drop. When it's clear at cold temps (couple weeks), you're there. Hopefully that'll fix the problem.
 

jcraig

Member
Joined
Dec 18, 2007
Messages
13
Reaction score
0
Location
Beanblossom
I'm glad I found this thread. Last night, while picking up pizza at a local brewery, I got talking to the owner who gave me a bottle of their best selling ale. I took it straight home and quaffed it down with my pizza. The first few sips had a very nutty nose and was quite pleasant. However, the more I drank, the more I was able to discern esters. By the end of the bottle it was like drinking liquid bananas. IMHO, this is not a flavor I enjoy in my beer... at all. In fact, this is one reason I quit the hobby years ago when I was doing extract brews in my apartment.

I was fermenting in our laundry closet with the air supply register (this was in Florida with the AC running near constantly) wide open and the rest of the registers near closed throughout the house. This got the closet down to about 65F. constant for two weeks (Ya, don't ask about our electric bill). Oh, that was the temp. reading on the carboy thermometer BTW. So, I figured I was safe as far as fermentation temps. were concerned. The worst offender was a wheat beer using Wyeast 1099 Witbread Ale. It was the worst "beer" I've ever tasted and I was so bummed that I quit.

I have tasted only a handfull of other home brew's but many of them have had a very... "home brew" flavor. Either estery, thin, or just plain nasty. I'm afraid all this time and money I'm investing right now is going to go to waste.

I figured that a local brewery, who is quite successful I assume (since they are expanding as fast as they can), would surely have advanced their brewing to a level to avoid these kinds of off flavors. Or, is this a flavor preferred by some and it's my pallet that is underdeveloped?

Regardless, I DON'T like this flavor at all, and will be bummed to find it in my beer again.
 

kh54s10

Supporting Member
HBT Supporter
Joined
Aug 6, 2011
Messages
18,683
Reaction score
5,431
Location
Edgewater
I'm glad I found this thread. Last night, while picking up pizza at a local brewery, I got talking to the owner who gave me a bottle of their best selling ale. I took it straight home and quaffed it down with my pizza. The first few sips had a very nutty nose and was quite pleasant. However, the more I drank, the more I was able to discern esters. By the end of the bottle it was like drinking liquid bananas. IMHO, this is not a flavor I enjoy in my beer... at all. In fact, this is one reason I quit the hobby years ago when I was doing extract brews in my apartment.

I was fermenting in our laundry closet with the air supply register (this was in Florida with the AC running near constantly) wide open and the rest of the registers near closed throughout the house. This got the closet down to about 65F. constant for two weeks (Ya, don't ask about our electric bill). Oh, that was the temp. reading on the carboy thermometer BTW. So, I figured I was safe as far as fermentation temps. were concerned. The worst offender was a wheat beer using Wyeast 1099 Witbread Ale. It was the worst "beer" I've ever tasted and I was so bummed that I quit.

I have tasted only a handfull of other home brew's but many of them have had a very... "home brew" flavor. Either estery, thin, or just plain nasty. I'm afraid all this time and money I'm investing right now is going to go to waste.

I figured that a local brewery, who is quite successful I assume (since they are expanding as fast as they can), would surely have advanced their brewing to a level to avoid these kinds of off flavors. Or, is this a flavor preferred by some and it's my pallet that is underdeveloped?

Regardless, I DON'T like this flavor at all, and will be bummed to find it in my beer again.
Maybe my palate is underdeveloped. I haven't gotten this in any of my beers so far, at least not to an offensive level. Everyone who has tried my beer has liked them. I have done 10 batches, 4 extract, 4 partial mash and 2 all grain. Although, I have not yet tasted the last 3 batches.

Why quit? There are thousands of successful homebrewers. Read up, ask questions and try to improve your processes until you brew good beer.

Or maybe you just don't really like beer.
 

jcraig

Member
Joined
Dec 18, 2007
Messages
13
Reaction score
0
Location
Beanblossom
Or maybe you just don't really like beer.
LOL, try telling that to SWMBO. I think I can single handedly keep our local liquor store in business with all the craft brew I drink. I'm still perplexed at how well we can rationalize paying $10 for a 4 pack of Breakfast Stout. :drunk:

Why quit? There are thousands of successful homebrewers. Read up, ask questions and try to improve your processes until you brew good beer.
Well, that's why I'm still here. I quit a few years back because I didn't have the space, time, or money to invest in a better system. I am now piecing together an all-grain system that I am sure will enable me to get some better results. It just takes time when you have a limited budget, a wonderful daughter that you can't help spoil, and a wife with a clothing addiction.

Don't get me wrong... I'm looking forward to brewing again and won't be quitting again anytime soon. I've taken advantage of my "time-off" and have been reading and studying during the entire hiatus. I believe I am now much better equipped with the knowledge to keep me working at it.

Sorry to hijack the thread. :eek:
 
Top