Strong medicinal/metallic taste. What went wrong?

What went wrong? Was this supposed to happen? Should I throw it out? What do I do now?

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Strong medicinal/metallic taste. What went wrong?

Postby hrobert » Tue Feb 19, 2008 9:22 pm

Well, I think it finally happened. I'm pretty sure I have an infected batch. Here's why: when I taste a pale ale I just kegged Sunday, it has a very strong medicinal/metallic taste that stays on the tip of the tongue long after taking a drink. By "long after" I mean an hour or so later, even after dinner, the taste is still there. To me, the taste is more like what I would think a cleaner or sanitizer would taste like.

I want to avoid this ever happening again, so I was hoping the forum could help possibly pinpoint what caused this.

Here's the details. This was the first batch I brewed and fermented in my new Fermenator stainless. We wash and sanitize really well with PBW, Saniclean, and StarSan. I did what I thought was a thorough cleaning of the conical with the same. 30 min soak with the PBW, 10 min or so with the SaniClean, and several minutes contact with the StarSan. We made a pint starter with CA Ale Yeast like we have several times before. I let the batch sit for about 5 days before dumping the trub for the first time. The trub had a stong hop scent. After two more days, I dumped it again, and took a sample for the SG reading. Again, a nice hop scent. The SG reading showed that the beer was basically done. It tasted pretty finished too, and quite nice. We let it set for another week before kegging. The sample we took at this time read the same SG, however, the hop scent was greatly reduced and the taste was much more muted, especially with regards to the bitterness. After we kegged, we added washed and sanitized stainless tea steepers full of hops to the kegs for dry hopping.

Here's some clues that I believe are very important. When we opened the conical to clean it, there was a dark almost black ring around the top of the krausen ring. Also, it is possible that I might have sucked some of my airlock water into the fermenting batch when dumping the trub, but not a lot. Also, I don't think that this has anything to do with fermentation temperature as I have built a temperature controlled fermentation box. So really, the conical was the only new thing in this batch, but it could just be coincidence.

I appreciate you taking the time to read all of this. Any idea on what might have happened and what to do to assure this doesn't happen again would be greatly appreciated! Thanks!
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Re: Strong medicinal/metallic taste. What went wrong?

Postby coder » Mon Mar 17, 2008 2:03 pm

I have a very similar problem in my Bitter, but I blame water burtonizing: too much gypsum & Epsom salt
Light Lager
Light Lager
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