Author Topic: Oxydized?  (Read 840 times)

Offline qm3k

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Oxydized?
« on: September 02, 2015, 11:55:13 PM »
Hi all,

This is a follow-up to a post I made a while back. I have been brewing for a long time and was producing good to fantastic beers. Then, suddenly, about 18 months ago, I started producing crap. I looked at sanitation, equipment, water, yeast health and pitching rates, temperatures, etc. I still keep producing a product that doesn't really taste like beer...it's tastes very muddled and has an odd aftertaste that I would describe as caramel-like and sweet (although NOT cloying. It's not an attenuation issue, according to my hydrometer) although that's really reaching(unfortunately, I could go down an extensive list of common off-favors and say "no" to each and every one of them).

One thing I want to ask about is oxidyzation...the beer does not taste like cardboard, but I suppose I COULD describe the aftertaste as slightly-sherry-like (please don't get into a debate about how I said caramel and now I'm saying sherry...like I said, I'm really clutching at straws here). After looking closer at my process, I realize that I have been lazy in one respect where I didn't used to be: purging the keg with CO2 before adding the beer. I've been skipping that lately (yes, I know it's lazy) and just purging the headspace. However, would oxydized flavors set in that quickly....say 3 days after kegging?

Any feedback is welcome...getting super-frustrated.

Cheers!

Offline klickitat jim

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Re: Oxydized?
« Reply #1 on: September 03, 2015, 12:13:43 AM »
1. What color of beer are we talking? Oxidation comes in different flavors and odors depending on several things. Generally, meaning not always, I find oxidation comes off like wet cardboard in light colored malty beers. As the beers get darker the oxidation perception changes to honey-like, then bad carmel, then sherry, then almond-like, and finally soy sauce in really dark old beers.

2. Rack your brain and figure out what you have done differently since the excellent beers. There is usually a hint hidden in there. For instance if you brewed excellent beers then took two years off, then made yuk beer. I would ask if you were using leftover grains from two years ago. But it could be a number of things. What's different since then?

Edit: I guess I didn't read thoroughly. Yes, if you recently quit purging, that would be my bet as the cause.
« Last Edit: September 03, 2015, 12:33:43 AM by klickitat jim »

Offline majorvices

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Re: Oxydized?
« Reply #2 on: September 03, 2015, 12:40:48 AM »
I wonder if your water changed? Water filter ever been replaced?

Offline qm3k

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Re: Oxydized?
« Reply #3 on: September 03, 2015, 12:47:16 AM »
I've been able to rule out water. I don't use the tap water in my area, and I've tried various kinds of commercially-available RO water. Right now I'm using Culligan water and making adjustments. This issue has been present no matter what type of water and no matter what type of adjustments I make.

Offline majorvices

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Re: Oxydized?
« Reply #4 on: September 03, 2015, 12:51:24 AM »
when was the last time you cleaned taps and lines?

Offline case thrower

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Re: Oxydized?
« Reply #5 on: September 03, 2015, 02:35:32 AM »
It could be it's not you.  MOST of my cleaning is done with oxyclean but sometimes i will use an additive free dishwashing liquid.  Had to get a new bottle and all of a sudden, I've got a carbonation problem and head issues, not to mention an off flavor I can't put my finger on.  Seems the company that makes the dishwashing liquid changed the formulation and where before the soap rinsed off easily, now it sticks around like an unemployed stepbrother.  And I could't figure out the problem because I hadn't changed anything.
Dave C.

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Offline jtoots

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Re: Oxydized?
« Reply #6 on: September 03, 2015, 12:30:49 PM »
sorry if these questions were asked on your previous thread... you didn't brew anything sour before all this, did you?  are you fermenting in buckets or carboys?

Offline brewinhard

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Re: Oxydized?
« Reply #7 on: September 03, 2015, 04:07:39 PM »
I would at least start properly purging your kegs prior to packaging to eliminate any chances of oxidation being the culprit.  That would be my first step in figuring things out.

Online dannyjed

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Re: Oxydized?
« Reply #8 on: September 03, 2015, 08:38:23 PM »
I had an IPA suffer from oxidation once and it was not really wet cardboard, but rather a harshness (almost like a bitterness) which made it undrinkable. I attributed it to transferring the beer into a carboy for dry-hopping and not flushing with CO2. Also, I racked the beer into the keg and the keg was not purged with CO2. The beer was fine for a week, then it had that harshness that was awful.
Dan Chisholm

Offline klickitat jim

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Re: Oxydized?
« Reply #9 on: September 04, 2015, 01:14:20 AM »
It seems like there is a tendency to oversimplify things in the brew-niverse. Such as long lag means bad yeast. It could be lack of O2, wort temp way too low, wort way to low pH, etc. Diacetyl means the yeast didnt finish. But it could also be a pedio infection,  etc. The same simplification happens with oxidation problems. There are several causes and several effects. Getting oxygen into finished beer and then tasting wet cardboard is just one data point. Kinda like saying oxidized metal is red... depends on what kind of metal. Oxidation can occur in beer many ways and present various flavor, aroma and appearance effects.

Do I know what all of them are? Nope. But I know that if I dont taste cardboard it doesnt rule out oxidation of another kind.

Offline bluesman

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Re: Oxydized?
« Reply #10 on: September 04, 2015, 03:02:12 AM »
Have you confidently ruled out an attenuation issue.? Have you tried calibrating your thermometer and hydrometer. What's changed in your process, ingredients, water test?, etc...
Ron Price