August 07, 2018 2 min read 1 Comment

Will I get off flavours in my beer?

I never have given hot side aeration a lick of thought in the past, until someone mentioned to me that I'm probably getting off flavours from the way I aerate my wort during the whirlpool process of my Unibräu/Unitank Pro systems.  Naturally I was worried.  Off flavours in my beer?  Of course I doubted myself, and tried the last east coast IPA that I brewed, worried I'd screwed things up.  It's sometimes hard when you brew, you always 'think' that you taste something, and rarely am I completely satisfied with one of my creations.  Immediately I jumped on my computer and typed 'hot side aeration', and came up with this article related to whirl pooling and hot side aeration from the Homebrewers Association:

Whirlpooling makes a world of difference

I read it and became more concerned.  The thing is, I KNOW that to aerate any liquid, it gets progressively more challenging to actually aerate the warmer it gets as cold water can hold much more oxygen than warm water.  However, I needed to get some answers about this, and I typed 'is hot side aeration while whirl pooling bullshit?' and came across this article from Brulosophy:


Hot Side Aeration - PT1: High Vs. Low Aeration / Exbeeriment Results!

For those who don't know what Brulosophy does, they conduct side by side experiments and I've found the articles and views on brewing unconventional and refreshing.  I also appreciate that they actually take the time to separate convention from fact, and I've learned lot's about brewing along the way.

I felt quite relieved after reading the article, as it confirmed what I'd thought about hot side aeration, and I'm not going to change a thing about the way I whirlpool in the future!  I suppose the mind can play tricks on you from time to time...

And, for the record: I've never experienced any off flavours whirl pooling in this manner.  In fact, I recommend it!

Here's a quick video showing how I whirlpool using using any one of our systems:








1 Response


November 21, 2019

I’ve done some reading on this LODO stuff. I think cold side oxidation is the most important thing for most brewers to be conscious. Hot side oxidation can have an impact, but is not a worthly concern for most homebrewers.

There are some folks who are really into Low Oxygen Brewing and do care about hot side oxidation. The LODO method is supposed to help achieve better malt aromatics than would be achieved with higher oxygen methods on the hotside. It also is supposed to help with shelf live stability.

Hot-side aeration won’t cause any off flavors, you just won’t necessarily achieve the malt profile targeted by LODO brewers. In other words, you can still brew great beers without off flavors even with a significant amount hot side oxidation. Hot side oxidation would only really have an impact on the malt profile, not the hop profile.

I think the Brulosophy experiment really needs to be redone with a more experienced LODO brewer. I don’t believe the LODO control group in the experiment by brulosophy was executed by an expert in that process. The ppm threshold of O2 required to oxidize hot wort is very low. And you only achieve the LODO benefits if you stay below that ppm level. Going above that ppm threshold is very easy and would likely even occur if you eliminated the whirlpool. Many other steps are required to achieve LODO levels. So unless you are shooting for that ultra low ppm level, oxidize away on the hot side without concern!

Your system isn’t designed to be a LODO system, so I don’t think it really matters.

P.S. I’ve never done the LODO stuff, but it is interesting to read about. I oxidize the hell out of my wort on the hot side. However, I am OCD about O2 exposure post fermentation. Reducing cold side oxidation is a must in my opinion. Some of my beers would probably be slightly better with LODO, but I’d prefer to RDWHAHB.

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