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tmcmah

Brew #2 - Trying to determine flavours - Identifying Grassy flavours

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Hi Guys,

 

Just dropping in again to ask for some advice. I dropped into my local brew craft store and picked up the Fat Yak Project 1 kit to brew in my Coopers kit. Its been 10 weeks since I bottled the brew and after going through a handful to test on separate occasions I've found that the taste isn't improving too much. Bottles tend to have different flavour profiles - some aren't bad, some are quite yeasty, and others have a grassy flavour to them which leaves an acidic texture on the back of my teeth.

 

I'll go through the ingredients and dates to try and paint a picture. Please note I opted to use the Salflager W-34/70 instead of the ale yeast provided due to the cold weather.

 

Ingredients:

Black Rock NZ Draught (1.7kg)

Black Rock Liquid Light Malt

Nelson Sauvin Hop Pellets (25g)

Cascade Hop Pellets (25g)

Saflager W-34/70

 

Method: (04/09/2015)

1. Usual mixing of malts

2. Cooked all bar 12.5g of Cascade hops exactly as instructions said

3. Pitched yeast at the right temp

Gravity reading of 1045.00

4. Dry hopped the remaining 12.5g of hops (07/09/2015)

5. Bottled with FG of 1010 (18/09/2015)

 

Bottles have been stored upright in wine cellar at 18C.

I cant quite remember but I think the beer stayed around 14C during fermentation.

 

There is a fair bit of sediment at the bottom of my bottles which I will be trying to reduce in future by cold crashing etc. But if I cool the bottles for long enough and pour carefully this seems to eliminate a lot of the sediment.

 

Has anyone else had issues with the beer just not tasting right? Or can someone point me in the right direction if I'm making any problems like not letting it sit for long enough?

 

Thanks in advance for your time!

 

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Can't comment on a lot of the other stuff. But the sediment is yeast. Cold crashing will help a bit if your bottle conditioning you will always get it. It's up to you of you try and avoid it or swirl it into your beer

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Hi Guys' date='

 

Just dropping in again to ask for some advice. I dropped into my local brew craft store and picked up the Fat Yak Project 1 kit to brew in my Coopers kit. Its been 10 weeks since I bottled the brew and after going through a handful to test on separate occasions I've found that the taste isn't improving too much. Bottles tend to have different flavour profiles - some aren't bad, some are quite yeasty, and others have a grassy flavour to them which leaves an acidic texture on the back of my teeth.

 

I'll go through the ingredients and dates to try and paint a picture. Please note I opted to use the Salflager W-34/70 instead of the ale yeast provided due to the cold weather.

 

Ingredients:

Black Rock NZ Draught (1.7kg)

Black Rock Liquid Light Malt

Nelson Sauvin Hop Pellets (25g)

Cascade Hop Pellets (25g)

Saflager W-34/70

 

Method: (04/09/2015)

1. Usual mixing of malts

2. Cooked all bar 12.5g of Cascade hops exactly as instructions said

3. Pitched yeast at the right temp

Gravity reading of 1045.00

4. Dry hopped the remaining 12.5g of hops (07/09/2015)

5. Bottled with FG of 1010 (18/09/2015)

 

Bottles have been stored upright in wine cellar at 18C.

I cant quite remember but I think the beer stayed around 14C during fermentation.

 

There is a fair bit of sediment at the bottom of my bottles which I will be trying to reduce in future by cold crashing etc. But if I cool the bottles for long enough and pour carefully this seems to eliminate a lot of the sediment.

 

Has anyone else had issues with the beer just not tasting right? Or can someone point me in the right direction if I'm making any problems like not letting it sit for long enough?

 

Thanks in advance for your time!

[/quote']

 

At first I couldn't think what you could have done wrong, then I had another look, & noticed you brewed at 14c, but for less than 2 weeks!

Not only that, but using a lager yeast.

 

If you're brewing a lager, you're usually best leaving it in the FV for a minimum of 3 weeks, to ensure it's fully fermented, & that any clean up that the yeast does after primary has been done.

So in short, you've bottled an immature lager.

 

You may actually have been better off using an ale yeast, even if it wasn't optimal temps, to make sure it would be finished prior to bottling, especially if time was a real factor for you.

Typically I (& most on this forum) wouldn't even bottle an ale until it's been in the FV for a minimum of 2 weeks.

5 - 6 days for primary fermentation, another 7 or so days for conditioning in the FV, to ensure the yeast has cleaned up after itself & trapped any unwanted stuff in the trub (yeast sediment) at the bottom of your FV.

 

So there's your answer, you may have followed all the instructions when it comes to making up your brew, including hop additions etc, but you've not allowed for the additional time required for a lager to mature.

Your beers may or may not improve over time in the bottle, but I'd suggest next time if doing a recipe like this as a lager, give it 3 weeks minimum in the FV, 2 weeks minimum in the FV if doing it as an ale.

 

Likewise since it's a lager, you'd do well to store the bottles in the fridge for a few weeks prior to drinking, so they can go through the lagering process. Lagering can be done at more or less any stage after primary, but since they've already been bottled the only way now is to lager them in the bottle.

I wouldn't touch them for 3 - 4 weeks if I were you, assuming you want to get as good a flavour as you can (salvage a brew that may still have some potential).

 

The one crucial ingredient a good brew needs is time, & you can't buy that at the LHBS!

Many an otherwise good brew has been turned into a passe, or undrinkable beer due to lack of patience.

 

You'll be amazed the difference if you give the brew the time it needs to condition & mature.

That's one of the reasons I usually only do one or two lagers a year, turnaround of ale is so much quicker.

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Hi Guys,

 

Thank you very much for your responses!

 

Bubblebrox - I had a feeling that the beer was under-done but wasn't exactly sure why. The whole lager yeast situations seems to be the main culprit! I do have a question re: lagering though;

 

Now that they've been bottled (and have been for some time) do you recommend just leaving them in my wine fridge at 1 degree until I want to drink it? Or is there a process of cooling/heating I should try and follow?

 

If not, what would be the best temperature to keep them at? I was under the impression that at such a low temperature the yeast would go dormant and very little would happen. I've actually experimented by leaving some bottles in my wine fridge at approx 18 degrees and taking others out and leaving them in my closet at about 20-22 degree's. Putting aside the different flavour profiles that I know were present before doing this experiment, the 18 degree batch were tasting better.

 

Just FYI I've transferred my my latest brew (http://store.coopers.com.au/mr-beer-bewitched-amber-ale.html with ALE yeast) to my fridge for cold crashing at 2 degree's - after 20 days at a 20 degrees.

 

Please tell me this sounds good!?!

 

Thanks again for the assistance guys,

 

Tmcmah

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Leaving the bottles in your fridge at 1C until you drink them is perfect. As Beeb says I'd give them a few weeks in there first before opening another one, but yes they can all stay in there.

 

20 days is probably a little long to leave an ale before cold crashing it - it won't do it any harm, it's just unnecessary. 20C is a good temperature, though. Two weeks is a good timeframe, then a week of cold crashing, then bottle. That's usually what I do with my ales and it works well. Also, no need to let the whole thing warm up before bottling either, the bottles will warm up and carbonation will occur.

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MHB on AHB posted this BFG by TB for your HB.

 

Really quite invaluable if you're trying to track down odd flavours and aromas, or need to troubleshoot your beer.

 

GB

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Leaving the bottles in your fridge at 1C until you drink them is perfect.

 

Beauty! Before I read this I actually opened a bottle' date=' poured it into my pint glass and noticed the head retention has improved dramatically (see photo). The flavours seem less intrusive as well which may be because of the temperature, but hopefully its turning for the better!

 

Two weeks is a good timeframe, then a week of cold crashing, then bottle.

 

I'm going to be kegging this batch - do you have any tips for this?

 

MHB on AHB posted this BFG by TB for your HB.

 

Really quite invaluable if you're trying to track down odd flavours and aromas' date=' or need to troubleshoot your beer. [/quote']

 

Thanks mate - will read through!

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Ugh, I can't believe this...

 

So after taking all your advice the beer turned out really nice, so I decided to brew it again (this time with ale yeast and controlled temp). However, on my way home from work I realised I didn't strain the 40 gram-15 minute hop boil into my FV like the instructions advised. So now there's 40 grams from the boil and 10 from the dry hop in the FV and will be until week three when I bottle it.

 

Will this be much of a worry? I'm now pretty much expecting VERY grassy flavours :/

 

Cheers

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Not sure... I've never experienced grassy flavours from leaving Cascade hops in the beer for long periods as a dry hop, but I've never used Nelson Sauvin so not sure if it is prone to doing that or not.

 

As for the kegging which you've already done lol my only tips would be cold crash for a week, then fill a keg as you would a bottle, trying not to splash it in there, then stick it in the fridge on gas at serving pressure for a week or so. You can naturally carbonate as well but it takes longer and by putting the keg in the fridge and using the CO2 cylinder you can keep the beer cold.

 

As for preparing the keg, obviously clean, sanitise etc. but another good idea is to hook it up to the gas and fill it with CO2 before filling it with the beer, just to minimise any oxygen contact. (Sorry I didn't see that post until now)

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