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Caribou Slobber OFF TASTE

HELP!!Going into week 3 of bottle conditioning of caribou slobber. This is my first home brew so I’m still learning a lot. The first few bottles I opened were good.(WIFE APPROVED) Not quite as malty as the Moose drool it is cloned from but a nice malt flavor with hops at the end just as advertised. It was a bit sweet to start with which I attributed to the priming sugar week 1 of the 2 set aside for bottle conditioning. Week two was less sweet and nicely carbonated.

Now for week 3! I can’t describe the off flavor but it is not good. Definitely undrinkable. What could have changed from week 2-3 that would make it so bad? I opened 3 bottles and they are all bad…I will continue to try more. Hopefully will be only a few bottles and if that’s the case what would cause the other bottles to be bad?

I was extremely paranoid about sanitizing. Used star san and soaked every bottle/cap in it for minimum 2 minutes before draining, sitting and draining again.

I did have issues with my siphon (which NB replaced with no questions) when bottling. The siphon that came with my kit broke and was inop on bottling day when I had to rack from carboy to the bottling bucket. This forced me to siphon by MOUTH which was also a struggle, (I got a good tasting of my brew) could this have caused issues to creep up?


Siphon by mouth MIGHT have introduced something but I highly doubt it, especially if it tasted good after a couple weeks like you said. Once a beer ferments the alcohol in the beer and the pH levels tend to kill most contamination.

Chances are your beer is still green, being young, so the malt flavors really haven’t conditioned yet. This happened to me when I bottle conditioned CS. The first couple weeks I hated it but as it aged 4-6 weeks it tasted incredible.

Give it another week or two and see if that changes it for the better.

I have had some small issues with Caribou Slobber–just bottled my third five gallon batch.

First batch was fermented too warm–newb mistake, but no off taste just a little bitter until after about 3 months in the bottle.

Second batch kept ferm temps down, but after months now in the bottle, there’s still some astrigency. Also, during fermentation, my gravity samples had a definite “sour milk” note. This disappeared, however, after the third week in fermentor.

This latest batch I was very careful with temps, especially when steeping grains. No noticeable off flavors when bottling, gonna give it 3 weeks to bottle condition and see how it is.

My only question would be–how long did you leave the beer in primary? If you took it off of the yeast too soon, could be that the “clean up” phase of the yeast was not finished. But I’m not experienced enough to know why, if that is the case, the early bottles would taste ok. I do know (like Nerdy suggests) that longer bottle conditioning can greatly effect this beer.

Keep us posted on the progress, and search out “off flavors in beer” on google and see if you can come up with a description of this flavor you’re getting.

Best of luck,

Can you describe the off flavor? Is it any of these?

Could it just be a palette issue? You didn’t just brush your teeth or spit out a piece of gum or something did you? :slight_smile:

Depending on the beer, most usually won’t be very tasty till about 3-4 weeks in the bottle.

My air temperature during fermentation was 61 degrees in my basement. The first couple days the carboy thermometer showed 65-66 degrees or so. After a week it settled to near room temperature.

I left it in the primary for 4 weeks without racking. It was contrary to the NB instructions but I read some post on here about racking vs not racking. (Especially the “slobber”) Figured with this brew it would be fine as is.

I bottled 4 weeks after brew day. I did not to gravity checks. I am planning on buying a hydrometer…

I purchased “How to Brew” recently and tried to taste test the beer and compare to the off flavors described in the back of the book. I tried to “savor” the horrible flavor and determine what it was. I cant decide if its Alcohol, soapy or astringent…its just not good.

The head has been comparable to the Moose Drool version. One bottle I pored yesterday was very thick and heavy on the head…

So weird it tasted fantastic the first several bottles and now suddenly its bad.

Serving temperature is one difference, The original bottles I drank were at or near room temperature for sampling purposes. The week 2 bottle sample was put in the freezer for 15 minutes or so to chill and came out well. I loaded a 6 pack and put them in the fridge…42deg and these are so far the ones that taste off???

This morning after the beer sat out on the counter all night I took a sip and it was actually palatable…

How much water did you steep your grains in and do you by chance know anything about the chemistry of your water (e.g. alkalinity)? Just wondering if you have some tannin extraction of your specialty grains there.

I steeped the grains per the instructions. Off the top of the dome…I want to say 3 gallons with the grain steeping for 20minutes or up to 170 degrees whichever comes first…I timed out before temp.

I have no idea about the water chemistry. I do travel quite a bit and from a taste/visual composition standpoint it is not high in sulfur(no smell), not high in Iron(no rust stains). It does have a lot of lime in it though. Enough it will ruin a dishwasher in a matter of a couple weeks without salt in the water softener. I do have a water softener but I THINK it only works for the hot water. I would have filled the pot with cold water(untreated). I read in the How To Brew book that I should be able to get a water report form the utility department. I haven’t done this yet.

It sounds like you have some highly alkaline water. This could account for the extraction of tannins from your grains and cause a bitter astringent flavor (think sucking on a teabag). I would suggest brewing with distilled water when extract brewing.

As to why they taste better at room temperature I can’t really say. Maybe tannins are more noticeable at colder temps? Just a guess.

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