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Esb Bavarian Lager - Strange Smell

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xaeros

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Hi All

I wanted to do something quick and easy so I thought I'd give the 3kg ESB Bavarian Lager a go. I used the supplied yeast (saflager w34) and fermented at 12-14oc - two weeks in the fermenter, and two weeks in CC. Anyway, I went to bottle it last night and it had an extremely strong smell to it - sort of a thick spicy smell, hard to describe really. I doubt that it is hop aroma, so can anyone who has tried this kit comment on whether the smell is usual or not? I tasted it and it didn't taste that bad, but not what I expected. Its also pretty cloudy with bits of stuff floating around in it. I have yet to get an infection in any of my brews so I suppose its time. Anyone have any ideas?

Cheers
 

Darren

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xaeros,
I have not used that kit but it is not uncommon for a lager ferment to stink (rotten eggs). The first lager I made I dumped because it smelled so bad. The misses thought the plumbing had backed up.
Should be fine.
cheers
Darren
 

jgriffin

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I did the same kit, and experienced the same smell. Very weird, almost sweet and spicy. The beer also tasted not very nice at all. I actually ditched most of it, except for a few bottles (i kegged most of it). Mine was also very cloudy.

3 months later, i tried a bottle and it was quite nice.
 

Bobby

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got some of this kegged at the moment also. i didnt get the smell during or after fermentation. Tastes fine. It could do with some dry hopping i reckon.
 

xaeros

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jgriffin, thats exactly what its like, a strange sort of spicy smell, really strong. Not really an off smell, just weird. The thing that concerned me was the cloudyness and the bits of stuff floating around, even after two weeks CC.

Maybe its the ESB 3kg cans - I racked an ESB 3kg Pilsener last night to CC and it had some bits and pieces still floating around. No strong smell in that one, but a sample of the brew tasted quite bitter. These kits come chock-a-block with lumps of hops in them so maybe that is what it is. Both of these kits smelt great while fermenting - no rotten egg smells, which by the way I have had with a WhiteLabs German Lager yeast - man I thought the sewer had backed up with that one! Brews turned out great though.

I guess I'll just leave it and see how it goes.
 

Bobby

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they are quality kits. i have never been let down by any esb product. the nut brown is quite nice.
 
J

Jovial_Monk

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Lager ferments, at lager temps especially, reek of sulphur, specifically H2S, rotten egg gas. Usually a couple weeks lagering removes al trace of sulphur

Jovial Monk
 

jimmysuperlative

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Yep. Been there done that. I've had a Bavarian kegged now for about a month ...don't want to tip it, but if i've another keg on I wont drink the Bavarian.
I got the cloudiness and very fruity taste -which i thought was strange after two weeks CC. It's tasting better after some time in the keg, and the cloudiness has improved significantly. Still, its just not quite right.

Bobby, I agree the Nut Brown is a good drop.
 

Linz

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Whats with the ads at the bottom???
 

sluggerdog

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Just bought this kit. Not knowing anything about a bavarian lager.
So what is it? i.e. what hops are usually used etc

I am planning on using Whitelabs German Lager yeast for this.
Maybe 2-3 in primary, rest for a few days and then wack into Cold conditoning for a few weeks.

Was also thinking of dry hopping with something, any suggestions?
 

vlbaby

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xaeros,
I have brewed 2 of these kits in the past, and your observations were exactly as mine. The taste wasnt too bad, but the smell in my opinion was bloody awful. I spoke to the brew shop from which I bought it, and he decided there must be something wrong with the kit and so gave me another can free of charge.
I brewed this one very very carefully. Sterilised everything thouroughy, fermented it at 12 deg C, cc'ed it for about 4 weeks, and then gave it a taste test to see how it was. The result was exactly the same. The taste in itself wasn't digusting , but I could not get over the smell when I brought the glass to my mouth. I left the brew to lager for another 2-3 weeks but nothing had changed so I decided to ditch it.
My conclusion from this is that your first reaction to the smell / taste of your beer is the most correct one. If you drink enough of any beer no matter how bad it is, you eventually begin to like it. Trust me, I used to think VB was a good drop.

vlbaby.
 

sluggerdog

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^ Bugger, this is the first brew I am going to do while using liquid yeasts.

Atleast I know now if it turns out bad not to think it was the yeast I used.
 

sluggerdog

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Have this one in the keg now and one thing I have really realy noticed is the head on the beer, I am pouring half head and half beer each time but the head is not like my others, it is very think and creamy (sort of) which does not disapear at all.

Would this be to do with something in the Kit or the White Labs German Lager Yeast I used? (Both were new to me)


EDIT: As I drink it, there seems to be a smell to me as well.. Funny type of smell, not sure what but it doesn't seem right.
 

Wortgames

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I brewed one of the 3kg ESB kits, a Czech Pilsener, a few years ago.

Exactly the same results - smelled awful, tasted WAY too bitter (and I mean WAY too bitter). It became more drinkable over time, but I never actually enjoyed drinking it.

I've avoided them since.
 

Weizguy

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Wortgames said:
I brewed one of the 3kg ESB kits, a Czech Pilsener, a few years ago.

Exactly the same results - smelled awful, tasted WAY too bitter (and I mean WAY too bitter). It became more drinkable over time, but I never actually enjoyed drinking it.

I've avoided them since.
[post="49887"][/post]​
 

Weizguy

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Wortgames said:
I brewed one of the 3kg ESB kits, a Czech Pilsener, a few years ago.

Exactly the same results - smelled awful, tasted WAY too bitter (and I mean WAY too bitter). It became more drinkable over time, but I never actually enjoyed drinking it.

I've avoided them since.
[post="49887"][/post]​
Others have commented on the variability that comes from ESB. I see it as a reminisence of Coopers when they were first available in NSW. Variable, but always good...Just as U may not prefer to brew the same beer twice in a row, you don't have to.with these kits (fresh wort too).

Seth (I'll send the 2c later) :p
 
D

die sudhausanlage

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Hi Guys,

Ive been making the 3kg ESB ranges for a long time now without a hitch. I believe the bavarian to be one of the best brew mel makes (no affiliation). I firmly believe if you use the white labs yeast as suggested you must, as jovial has stated, Lager it.

And this kit turns out impecably if you ferment at or around 10deg C.

If you ferment at 22 deg of course you will not get the same beer.

Btw the ESB 3kg range has been behind a few nice competition wins of late, hats off to Mel for keeping it up.

DS
 

warrenlw63

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die sudhausanlage said:
Btw the ESB 3kg range has been behind a few nice competition wins of late, hats off to Mel for keeping it up.

DS
[post="49914"][/post]​
Yep, agree fully with DS. When my father in law was living with us I used to make the 3kg ESB kits for him. (about a half a dozen in total) IMO they're the best kits bar none and pretty good value for money.

His favourite used to be the the Aus. Draught Kit. I sometimes did the Pils and Bav. Lager kits for him as well. Usually made them to light strength. In other words just topped the fermenter up to about 22 litres + or - a litre or two.

They always came out very clean, well-made beers.

Warren -
 

sluggerdog

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Could the big creamy head have naything to do with the fridge being too cold?
Mine is set at about -2C at the moment ...???
 

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