Back to Shopping at NorthernBrewer.com

Help with off flavor!

No matter what I do I continually get this apple/cider flavor. Just did an all grain batch of NB nut brown. Pitched between 60-65, and fermented at 60 for about 4 weeks. Then raised the temp to 70 for two weeks. Just put into the keg and forced carbed. Any help would be appreciated. Im coming to the conclusion that no matter what I do, I will never make a good beer.

Is it present before kegging? If not, clean/replace your lines. Replace the o-rings. Disassemble the taps and clean it.

It smells like it before I keg. I hate that cidery smell.

We need a complete rundown of your brewing process to narrow down the cause. IMO it is most likely a yeast/fermentation problem, or like Nighthawk said a sanitation issue somewhere along the way.

My first thought was you may have underpitched and then fermented it too cold. If you used a highly flocculant yeast it may have gone dormant and dropped out before it cleaned up after itself. I could be way off, so please post more details. :cheers:

do you ferment in plastic buckets? are there any scratches in them? sounds like a possible infection to me or a yeast problem. how do you sanitize? do you transfer your beer into a secondary fermenter? if so, when? what was your mash temp (too low can cause it to ferment too much making it dry and possible cidery)? checking the accuracy of your thermometer is always a good idea.

what yeast do you use? dry or liquid? do you make starters?

you CAN make good beer. patients is the key. keep at it, and you’ll end up with something to be proud of

Currently use a conical fermentor, and lagering fridge. Brewed the nut brown all grain kit from NB. Brewed the beer on 10/9/11, OG 1.040 at 70. Pitched yeast at 60 degrees. Yeast was wyeast 1945 NB neobritannia. All equipment was cleaned with PBW and sanitized with star san. Used filtered tap water. Trub was dumped 3 weeks after pitching. Raised temp up to 70 degrees the last week and cold crashed on 11/21/11. Transferred on 11/23. Forced carbed beer in kegerator. Poured beer again today, and damn, that cider/sour flavor again. Right now, I am degassing a cup of beer to see if maybe my co2 is giving me off flavors. One thing I did notice is that the beer tasted awesome on 10/16/11.

cider/sour sounds like an infection to me… maybe a part of your equipment is harboring an infection. i’m not familiar with that yeast strain. maybe theres a scratch in a plastic siphon or funnel. hard to say… (scratches is plastic equipment is a great place for bacteria to hide)

sounds like it tasted fine before the transfer. as mentioned above i might check my beer lines. or transferring equipment.

hopefully some more experienced brewers will chime in on this thread

Just tasted some degassed beer, it tastes a whole lot better, still some cider aroma, but the taste is improved. Maybe its the CO2?

not sure about the co2. i use a paintball co2 tank for my keg system and i never noticed a problem. its possible i suppose

IMHO this is the problem. Neobritannia has a recommended fermentation temp of 66-74 and also has medium-high flocculation. It fermented at 60F, but towards the end of fermentation when it ran out of food it probably went dormant before it cleaned up the acetaldehyde. I think most of the yeast had already dropped out and was dumped before you warmed it up. After high krausen I would have began to raise the temp up to maybe 66-68F to help the yeast finish its job.

Edit: I may be confused on your timeline.

So do you think this is a dumper? Any possible way to salvage this?

I like apple cider… just give it to me and I’ll take care of it for you! :wink:

My guess is Beerginner has it right. I like to ferment on the cold side of the recommended yeast range and even below it. I have had an occasional acetadehyde flavor if I rack it off too soon from the trub. Let it age and it will mellow. Hopefully enough yeast is there to continue to clean up the problem over time. The odd part is that you said it tasted fine earlier before kegging it - that means that there could be an infection in your processing equipment - sounds like a good time to soak canes and tubes in cleaner and do a major sanitizing across the board, including a keg break down and cleaning.

:cheers:

I have never had much luck trying to fix a beer after fermentation. I would warm it up to 70 and let it sit for a while ( if you can tie up a keg that long). I am more of a brewer than a drinker, so when I make a sub par batch I only keep it around until I can replace it with the next beer. I don’t mind at all trying again. My first year of brewing was pretty rough, I probably could have dumped a lot more than I did. Keep learning and brewing and eventually you will make a great beer. :cheers:

Stressed yeast can lead to cidery smells. Make sure you are pitching lots of good healthy yeast. It might age out if there are still active yeast in there.

Maybe a dumb question, but can you pitch in more yeast?

Yes you can always pitch more yeast. You don’t really need that much if you are using it for conditioning. A neutral dry yeast will do the job.

One thing I did do, was take some of my beer and made a yeast starter with it. It appears that after 48 hours I have a decent amount of yeast in my flask. Im going decant and dump this back into the keg.

Back to Shopping at NorthernBrewer.com