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General Category => General Homebrew Discussion => Topic started by: mihalybaci on August 22, 2012, 07:35:34 PM

Title: Diacetyl Blindness
Post by: mihalybaci on August 22, 2012, 07:35:34 PM
This morning I received an email with some judges' comments from a competition (an APA, it did okay). One of the comments was "diacetyl", which I don't find at all when I taste it. Nor did I detect diacetyl when I took the BJCP exam where they doctored the one of the test beers with it. Is there a widely available commercial beer that just screams DIACETYL that will let me know once and for all if I'm "diacetyl blind"?
Title: Re: Diacetyl Blindness
Post by: bonjour on August 22, 2012, 08:04:11 PM
an APA may have some caramel in it which many will mistake for diacetyl.
Title: Re: Diacetyl Blindness
Post by: denny on August 22, 2012, 08:08:52 PM
Sometimes I have trouble tasting diacetyl, but I can nearly always detect it as a slickness on the roof of my mouth.
Title: Re: Diacetyl Blindness
Post by: mihalybaci on August 22, 2012, 08:14:06 PM
Yeah, only one of the two judges' ticked the diacetyl box on the scoresheet. The grain bill was roughly 82% pale malt, 12% honey malt, and 6% Victory malt. There's a definite honey-like (shocking!) malty sweetness to it, but nothing I would describe as "caramelly" and I didn't notice any type of slickness associated with diacetyl. Luckily, I have one bottle of it left so I can look for it one last time.
Title: Re: Diacetyl Blindness
Post by: jeffy on August 22, 2012, 08:17:15 PM
You could pick up some Samuel Smith's Pale Ale.  Most people can recognize diacetyl in that beer.  Shipyard beers usually have it.  Or buy some artificial butter in the popcorn section of the grocery and sniff that for a real hit.
Title: Re: Diacetyl Blindness
Post by: nateo on August 22, 2012, 08:19:08 PM
At the homebrew club meeting last night I had my first noticeably diactyl'd beer. It tasted just like artificial popcorn butter. It was super weird. I'm not sure I'd be able to pick out a low-level of diacetyl, though.
Title: Re: Diacetyl Blindness
Post by: tom on August 22, 2012, 09:00:35 PM
I think about 10% of folks can't smell or taste it.
Title: Re: Diacetyl Blindness
Post by: hopfenundmalz on August 22, 2012, 10:32:13 PM
You can put a sample of the beer in the microwave for 20 seconds and see if that brings out the diacetyl. I have a medium to medium high threshold.
Title: Re: Diacetyl Blindness
Post by: Kaiser on August 23, 2012, 01:54:51 PM
I have had diacetyl beer at club meetings, which makes me believe that the brewer must have had a higher diacetyl threshold than me.
Title: Re: Diacetyl Blindness
Post by: hopfenundmalz on August 23, 2012, 03:18:48 PM
There is one guy in the club who says he is blind to diacetyl - well he does say he can pick it up in theater popcorn.

There is another guy in the club that is hypersensitive to diacetyl, but says he is blind to DMS. Rolling Rock tastes like any other adjunct lager to him.

We are all diffentent. That is why there has to be more than 1 judge on a panel.
Title: Re: Diacetyl Blindness
Post by: erockrph on August 23, 2012, 05:31:14 PM
There is another guy in the club that is hypersensitive to diacetyl, but says he is blind to DMS. Rolling Rock tastes like any other adjunct lager to him.

You know, I was wondering if there was a commercial beer that was a good example of DMS to calibrate my palate. I haven't had the Rock in ages. I'll have to check it out.
Title: Re: Diacetyl Blindness
Post by: hopfenundmalz on August 23, 2012, 06:21:09 PM
There is another guy in the club that is hypersensitive to diacetyl, but says he is blind to DMS. Rolling Rock tastes like any other adjunct lager to him.

You know, I was wondering if there was a commercial beer that was a good example of DMS to calibrate my palate. I haven't had the Rock in ages. I'll have to check it out.

In BJCP class we had some. It was creamed corn to me. Considered part of the Brands flavor, though a defect by most anyone else.
Title: Re: Diacetyl Blindness
Post by: andyi on August 23, 2012, 07:44:52 PM

I percieve DMS as a baked bean-y aroma in my beers. I brew belgians, use primarily pils and boil for 90min.  I immersion chill it down to 140-ish before i cover the pot.  This time I whirlpooled hops for 15 min before cooling and no Van Camps in finished beer...hmmm
Title: Re: Diacetyl Blindness
Post by: tcanova on August 24, 2012, 06:59:15 PM
I did a doctored beer segment for our beer club and used artificial butter flavoring, which can be found in most grocery stores in the spices section.  I used a Bud Light as the base beer, because it is pretty much free of any taste so lends itself to being doctored.  Just a few drops in a BL and you will get the flavor. 
Title: Re: Diacetyl Blindness
Post by: malzig on August 25, 2012, 11:48:46 AM
Shipyard beers usually have it.
Sea dog and Shipyard beers, and most anything they contract brew, like the Gritty McDuff beers, are usually loaded with diacetyl.

Unfortunately, I'm very sensitive to it and it tastes foul to me.  It is a useful trait to have as a brewer, though.
Title: Re: Diacetyl Blindness
Post by: majorvices on August 25, 2012, 12:48:08 PM
I am very sensitive to diacetyl. Used to be that Redhook ESB was loaded with it, but I don't know if that is the case any longer. I brewed a kolsch a couple months ago that is slightly tainted with diacetyl (it was one that I had trouble raising over 58 degrees due to my weird method of fermenting it in my cold room). I can't drink it. My wife says it is delicious.
Title: Re: Diacetyl Blindness
Post by: beerprof on August 27, 2012, 12:37:24 AM
anything from Middle Ages screams diacetyl.
Title: Re: Diacetyl Blindness
Post by: tschmidlin on August 27, 2012, 11:30:52 PM
anything from Middle Ages screams diacetyl.
I doubt the people did ;)