On my last few light colored brews-(hefeweizen, saison, blonde)-I’m sensing a very slight off flavor but I can’t put my finger on it. It is very slight and does not make the beer unpleasant, but to my untrained palate it just seems like something that doesn’t belong. It’s not quite cardboard, not quite bandaid, just a watery sort of taste I get on the very back of the tongue (this is definitely in the finish, not up front). But if I were pressed to call it something, I would have to say more of a chemically, plasticky, latex type taste. Again, it is very, very slight.
I do biab 5 gallons, and I mash in my stainless BK. I build up distilled water using brunwater, but sometimes I don’t know if my scale is working properly for the small amounts of additives I use. I normally add CaCl and epsom salt, and lactic acid when necessary, I’ve fermented in both plastic and glass with the same result. I don’t secondary, so my only transfer after fermentation is to the bottling bucket. I’m careful not to splash and I always get good flow with no bubbles through the bottling wand. I control ferm temps with a swamp cooler, and keep a close eye on that.
After going over my process carefully, the one thing I have thought of is that I use tap water (chlorinated) for my sanitizer (starsan) without treating for chlorine. This seems like a long shot since so very little of the solution is left on the bottles or in the fermenter after I sanitize. I’m wondering if this could actually be a problem, so before I bottled my kolsch yesterday I made a fresh batch of starsan and treated the water with a camden tablet before mixing in the starsan. Used the new batch to sanitize the bottling bucket, wand, tubing, bottles, etc. Although all of the fermentation equipment on this batch was sanitized with the non treated sanitizer.
Anybody think that this could be my problem? I’m also gonna get a more sensitive scale to measure water additives. Any and all advice will be appreciated.