View Full Version : Weissheimer Malt Flavor Change

12-14-2004, 04:00 PM
5 years ago my brewery began using Weissheimer Pilsen Malt as the base malt for our lager styles. The past 2 brews we have noticed a dramatic flavor change in wort production from what once was considered "normal." The taste can be described as Smokey, Metallic, Rusty, and or musty. We do not get this profile when using other malt types. The supplier has stated that there have been no complaints about this. But they did say that not too many breweries ordered Weissheimer from them. A few being very small. I figure they would rather not say if there is a problem because it is easier that way. So I am looking for suggestions for what may be causing this. So that I can take immediate action.


Mike Hall
12-14-2004, 06:06 PM
Take imediate action & try a different brand of Pils Malt if the flavor is still not good look at the way you store & handle your malt befor brews. If it tastes great maybe it's time to Switch Malt suppliers. also try tasting & smelling your malt strait out of the bags and see if you tast the same off flavors. My 2 cents,

Mike Hall
Head Brewer
Flathead Lake Brewing
Woods Bay, MT

12-15-2004, 05:41 AM
I had a similar problem. I discovered that my base malt had picked up too much moisture in the silo and spoiled giving a musty/smoky flavor in my beers. The malt looked fine and tasted alright but if you ate enough you could pick up the flavor. If they dont sell alot of that malt they may have had an old pallet sitting around.

12-15-2004, 07:10 AM
I do agree with the previous posts and can only say, that in Germany they have had an excellent year regarding the barley crop and I assume that it may very well be a distributor problem!
Peter Boettcher

Cargill Malt
12-30-2004, 12:28 PM
It is difficult to respond to a question about a competitor's product for a number of reasons. The primary one being that we have no idea what their processes and procedures are. The secondary one being that any response to the negative sounds disingenuous due to the fact that we are competitors.

That being said, I will do my best. It is possible that these off flavors you are getting are due to your malt. The malt could have a host of issues related to processing and storage that could adversely affect the flavor of your product. But maybe not. The malt may be perfectly fine and something in your process may be at fault.

As to what specifically could happen to malt to create these flavors, this question is far less important than the question regarding whether it is the malt or not. If the malt is contributing such a negative flavor, and you can prove it is the malt, a change is in order regardless of the source of the taint. I don't think this logic applies to small issues or variances in quality, but if your beer is being rendered undrinkable and the supplier isn't giving you a good reason for it, AND you can conclusively prove it is the malt, a change is in order. The last caveat being the most important.

Do you used other base malts with the same yeast strain in your brewery? Does the flavor come out there? Is this a reproducible phenomenon or is it a hit or miss situation?

The flavors you describe could very easily be caused by wort infection. Many wort spoilers create smoky, phenolic off flavors. If you filter, DE carryover could be contributing metallic flavors due to iron contamination. And so on. This is why it is very important to isolate the malt as a single variable in determining whether it is the culprit or not.

So, my advice would be to narrow the problem down and keep your supplier in the loop as you go. Try some other malt in the short term if the problem is serious enough that the beer is unacceptable for serving. The results of your research combined with the way your supplier deals with the problem should give you a clear direction what to do going forward.