Why Does My Beer Taste Metallic? – Here’s Why Your Beer Tastes like Pennies
Ever wonder why some beers have a hint of metal to them? No, that is not a new flavour profile and no, you’re not drinking liquified pennies. Here’s why your beer tastes metallic and a couple ways to fix it.
By The Beer Community on Oct. 26, 2017
Why does my beer taste like pennies?
Ever cracked a cold one only to take a sip and it tastes like straight metal? Don’t worry, you’re not drinking liquified pennies. And no, the beer did not go bad. If you’re wondering why your beer tastes like metal, here are some reasons why and how you can fix it:
You’re Drinking Your Beer Straight from the Can
We’ll tell you what it’s not: the metal from the beer can seeping into your beer. While it is a common myth that the beer can is what will cause the beer to taste metallic, most canned beers are lined with a polymer coating. This means that the beer itself doesn’t actually come into contact with the aluminum of the can.
We’ll tell you what it might be: Your nose. Have you ever held your breath to be able to stomach not-so-pleasant food? You can do it, right? That’s because about 80% of taste is actually smell. So when your beer tastes like it’s been poured over a bunch of pennies, it could be because you’re smelling the can.
How To Fix It: Try pouring your beer into a glass. Preferably one that will enhance your beer’s style. To learn more about beer styles and the correct glasses check out The Case for the Proper Glassware or Serving the Perfect Beer: Temperature, Pour and Glassware.
Your Beer Was Brewed with Low-Quality Grain
We’ll tell you what it’s not: Metal is not the newest beer style; it’s pretty unlikely that the brewer liquified pennies and called it beer.
What it might be: It is possible that the brewer used a lower quality grain or grain that was not stored properly, so it absorbed odours around it.
How To Fix It: Grab another beer. The ingredients in beer are usually fresh, so the metal taste in the beer most likely won’t in the next batch.
Your Beer Came into Contact with Metal in the Brewing Process
We’ll tell you what it’s not: It’s unlikely your beer has been poisoned. But then again, it depends if you’re the one who opened it.
We’ll tell you what it might be: There are two ways in which your beer comes into contact with metal in a brewery: Water or Equipment. Water is an important part of the brewing process. Sometimes the water that is used for brewing can contain a high iron concentration, thus causing the metallic taste in your beer. When it comes to equipment, most brewery equipment is either stainless steel or made of iron or copper-coated in nickel. Beer has the ability to corrode nickel, so if not monitored carefully the beer could come into contact with the iron or copper of the equipment causing the metallic taste.
How To Fix It: Take time to oxidize. Even breweries that use stainless steel equipment rather than copper or iron can be susceptible to metallic beer. To avoid this, take time to oxidize before making the next batch. If you’re a home-brewer, after cleaning, boil water in your aluminum/stainless steel pot before brewing your beer.
Next time you pop open a beer and it smells or tastes a little metallic, you can let everyone know that rest assured, no coins were harmed in the making of this beer.
Have more questions about your beer? Check out these articles below!
What is an IPA (AKA India Pale Ale)?
India Pale Ales (IPA): where they come from, their appearance, flavour & aroma, palate & mouthfeel, food pairings and serving suggestions are all explained in this Beer Styles 201 article.
What is a Sour Ale or Wild Ale?
Sour Ales: where they come from, their appearance, flavour & aroma, palate & mouthfeel, food pairings and serving suggestions are all explained in this Beer Styles 201 article.
What is a Strong Ale?
Strong Ales: where they come from, their appearance, flavour & aroma, palate & mouthfeel, food pairings and serving suggestions are all explained in this Beer Styles 201 article.
Ales vs. Lagers – What’s the Difference?
What is the difference between an ale and a lager? Are lagers a type of ale? If you find yourself asking questions about ale and lager beer styles every time you reach for one, this article will teach you the difference and about their different beer types!