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Tanginess in IIPA (BRY-97)

This is a new one for me.

Brewed up our clone of Pliny, with a whole mess of hops. Have brewed this before on this system, and it came out basically exactly like Pliny. Amazing beer.

Of course, this time, the cheeba monkeys at our local HBS/weed-growing hydroponics store didn’t have S-05 OR WLP001, so we went with BRY-97. I grew up a starter in an APA, and we pitched at a rate assuming 60% viability, since the starter was such a hoppy beer.

Have the clone kegged up and carbed, and it has a great hoppy aroma and flavor, right up until the middle of the taste when this weird tangy/not-quite-tart flavor takes over. I have tasted lacto (both intentional and unintentional), and I really don’t think this is lacto. This beer was fermented in a 14 gallon stainless steel conical that is scrubbed hard after each use and impeccably sanitized.

After fermenting/racking the starter APA (which was decanted off of hop matter before pitching the first pitch of this yeast), the harvested (2nd gen) yeast sat in a sanitized container in the fridge for about a week.

Also, the IIPA was dry-hopped, yeast dropped, cold-crashed, and gelatined before kegging. Pretty clear for a hoppy beer. One possibility is we pitched too much of the BRY-97 cake into the beer.

I know some british ale yeasts have a slight tanginess to them. Could this be a yeast issue?

More importantly, are there any additions I can make to tame this down a bit? I tried adding about a 1/4 tsp of gypsum to a pint, which did nothing. A 1/4 tsp of baking soda seemed to help a bit, but I feel like that might destroy any hop flavor/aroma.

Whether its my mistake or not, I probably won’t be using this yeast again as it doesn’t floc at all.

I’ll assume your ferm temps didn’t spike on you.

Maybe its coming from hops, I’ve noticed some odd flavors from a really fresh dry-hopped beer. Also could be carbonation hasn’t equilibrated. I’d give it a couple weeks and re-evaluate.

I have no experience with BRY, I keep US-05 and S04 on hand for emergency use.

Heres a link to a long thread on BRY-97. I see nothing mentioned about it causing tanginess. It is supposed to drop out well though, so I don’t know how this jibes with your observation about flocculation. Also, over-pitching shouldn’t cause tanginess unless it resulted in a runaway ferm temp.

http://www.homebrewtalk.com/f163/anyone ... et-333553/

I had a similar issue with my Irish Red using Danstar Nottingham. After just over a month in bottles its finally starting to tone down on the tanginess. Maybe time will help yours mellow as well.

Great, thanks for the replies. We held fermentation at 65* for 5 days, then ramped to 70* prior to 2 separate, successive dry hops of around 6-8 oz of hops each.

Interesting that other brewers didn’t have a flocculation problem with this yeast, as I experienced it both in my APA and this IIPA. Cold crash, gel, and still some issues with clarity.

Regarding Notty, I have had the same thing, but I feel like that flavor (at least at low levels) belongs in English pale ales and maybe even in some porters that you would use it for.

Going to give it another week (but probably still drink some in the meantime :mrgreen: )

I doubt it’s the yeast. I’ve used that yeast once and it’s very clean. The only gripe I have about it is that it’s slow to start.

You didn’t describe your brewing water or treatments. If you started with low alkalinity water like RO and you added a bunch of gypsum, its possible that you depressed the mash pH a little too far. That could be a source of tartness. It is best to get that low pH corrected in the pH than to fix it later in the kettle or in the beer since the mash enzymes are adversely affected by pH that deviates substantially from around 5.4.

Here’s where Martin loses all respect for me…

We don’t typically treat our water. Started with our tap water, run through a charcoal filter, 1/2 Camden tab for ~16G of strike water. No gypsum.

I like to think I’m relatively intelligent, but I have to admit, usually after hearing or reading a few sentences about water, a John Palmer voice saying “residual alkalinity” starts humming through my head and I start to nod off to sleep. My brewing partner hems and haws that we aren’t using 5.2 stabilizer, but I’ve heard it causes more trouble than it addresses.

I guess this is my wake up call to learn me bout some water.

Could well be the source of tartness in a light colored beer, also can result in haze/slow clearing. It stinks to have to deal with it, but its important to at least know what styles your water is good for.

In-line RO filter at my new place. I’m making this happen. And I am buying Water by Mr Residual Alkalinity himself.

:shock: Why are home brewers so quick to throw BRY-97 under the bus?

I swear by RO water and the bru’N’water spreadsheet. Never read a John Palmer book either…but when I started messing with the water, my beers got so much better.

Can’t say whether any of that contributes to your tanginess though…

I’ve only used it once, so I haven’t thrown it under the bus yet. Mangrove Jack’s yeast, however, I’ve thrown under the bus then backed up over it.

I’ve only used it once, so I haven’t thrown it under the bus yet. Mangrove Jack’s yeast, however, I’ve thrown under the bus then backed up over it.[/quote]

Which one? I bought a pack of M07 for a bitter in January.

Ok here is our water profile (haven’t yet obtained a Ward labs report, this is from our municipality). We ran this water through a charcoal filter and added camden.

Ca - 26.5
Mg - 7
Na - 19.5
K- 1.4
Bicarbonate - 79.6
Carbonate - 0.1
Sulfate - 14
Chloride - 35.5
Nitrate - 0.2
pH 7.6

Total Alkalinity - 65.5 (total bicarbonates/carbonates not given, estimated by Bru’n Water).

Could this profile cause an astringent flavor?

We also may have overpitched yeast. I gave my friend some harvested yeast and he dumped the whole thing in instead of measuring out slurry.

[quote=“Pietro”]
I guess this is my wake up call to learn me bout some water.[/quote]

I was intimidated by water chemistry for a long time, and then I downloaded bru’nwater and started monkeying around. Really, Martin has made it easy enough for just about anybody to build a good water profile, even through trial and error. I would say that I started using it without really understanding what I was doing, and immediately noticed an improvement in my beer. Then I finally took the time to read his “Introduction” page, which was a clear description of what’s going on with water chemistry. It’s well-executed and not too hard to pick up at all. Once I got the gist of water basics, the spreadsheet became even easier to use.

I’ve even taught a few other people how to use bru’nwater, and it wasn’t hard to do. Learn it, and pass it on!

Stop psyching yourself out, and give it a shot. You’ll be happy you did.

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