Bad hops?

Discussion in 'General Brewing Discussions' started by Ron Reyes (Papa Piggy), Jul 30, 2019.

  1. Ron Reyes (Papa Piggy)

    Ron Reyes (Papa Piggy) Active Member

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    I have an strange hypothesis. a while ago I made a pale ale beer that ended up with a god awful taste? I could not properly identify it and i doubted all of the potential causes. im a clean freak, no bleach, enough yeast and oxygen, temperature control you name it. I ended up dumping it cause it just would not clean up.

    Well a couple weeks ago I brewed a simple ESB. The brew day was awesome. Fermentation was great. Near the end of Fermentation I checked my gravity and as always I tested it. It smelled great and tasted amazing but a bit sweeter than I was hoping for so I had an idea of using the hops left over from that god awful batch that was set aside for dry hoping. I dumped the batch prior to dry hopping so I had the hops (whole leaf) left over in my freezer still in the same bag my LHBS portioned it out to. Well after 7 days dry hopped at 64 degrees F. I prepared for racking into my keg, took a taste and blech boo hiss. Same bad taste. So could it be this batch of hops was oxidized or infected? It Kinda don’t make sense yet it is the one thing that ties these two batches together????
     
  2. Hawkbox

    Hawkbox Well-Known Member

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    Sounds plausible, I doubt infected but old and oxidized could absolutely be the case. I've heard that old bad hops have a cheesyesque smell/flavour and not in a good way.
     
  3. BOB357

    BOB357 Well-Known Member

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    I always smell hops when I open the original packageing and again every time I weigh some out. Not really checking them, just love the aroma of hops. Doubtful I'll ever have hops ruin a brew.
     
  4. Nosybear

    Nosybear Well-Known Member

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    What variety are they?
     
  5. Ron Reyes (Papa Piggy)

    Ron Reyes (Papa Piggy) Active Member

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    a combination of Cascade Centennial and Zeus. Also Im not looking to blame my LHBS they are awesome. Im just trying to figure this out and it seems like an odd coincidence. but come to think of it the only other time i had a bad batch it was from the same place. I tend to get my malt and hops from 3 local places.
     
  6. Nosybear

    Nosybear Well-Known Member

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    Can you describe the flavor? Bad hops are generally cheesy, like aged parmesan. I wanted to know the varieties to make sure it wasn't a "catty" hop causing the problem.
     
  7. Ron Reyes (Papa Piggy)

    Ron Reyes (Papa Piggy) Active Member

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    well and here is the kicker... As near as I could tell I would say medicinal???? But really I'm not sure. I had a few other people try and identify it but they couldn't. I don't think it was cheesy.
     
  8. Ron Reyes (Papa Piggy)

    Ron Reyes (Papa Piggy) Active Member

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  9. Nosybear

    Nosybear Well-Known Member

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    "Medicinal" sounds more like a water problem. Are you on municipal water? If so, they may have changed sources and disinfectant (chlorine) levels for the summer. Our water supply is fairly low in chlorine but I still dechlorinate every batch, every time.
     
  10. Ron Reyes (Papa Piggy)

    Ron Reyes (Papa Piggy) Active Member

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    I alway at least partially boil all my water and use a campden tablet. I never use bleach. Only pbw to clean and starsan to sanitize. And remember this recent batch was awesome until I dryhopd. How did I dry hop? After primary it tasted good and I auto siphoned into a freshly cleaned and sanitized glass carboy. Poured my hops in the carboy and pit an airlock on it and let it sit at 65f for 7 days. After this though I will be carbon filtering all my water.
     
  11. Ron Reyes (Papa Piggy)

    Ron Reyes (Papa Piggy) Active Member

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    Also I’m not 100% sure it was “medicinal”. I just don’t think it was any of the other more normal or organic tasting off flavours. And it was fine up until I added the hops..
     
  12. Nosybear

    Nosybear Well-Known Member

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    If you're using tap water, it probably has been disinfected with chloramine. Boiling won't remove that. I see you're mentioning carbon filtering, a half a Campden tablet for ten gallons will do the job nicely, converting the chloramine to a bit of chloride and sulfate. I've measured chlorine with test strips before and after adding metabisulfite: Before I get about 0.5 ppm total chlorine, afterward, none. It's an odd one, this problem.
     
  13. Hawkbox

    Hawkbox Well-Known Member

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    I'm personally of the opinion you are having problems with vocabulary the same way I do.
     
  14. Trialben

    Trialben Well-Known Member

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    Dont we all i speak jibberish at the best of times.:p
     
  15. J A

    J A Well-Known Member

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    Don't buy hops in stored in bulk. Maybe the LHBS has a great way of storing hops and maybe not. If they portioned them out to you per order, my guess is that they were old and oxydized before you ever stored them for the extra time in your freezer. Only buy hops that are still in the suppliers packaging, properly sealed and kept cold at all times. I buy hops by the lb and use them as needed and store them in vacuum bags in the freezer. That's the only way to do it if you're not buying ounce at a time.
     

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