Why does my beer smell like skunk?

7 May


My most recent article for Chow.com, on why beer gets skunked, was just posted here. Check it out.

And, according to my research, pilsners in and of themselves are not more susceptible to skunking (that was added in the edit). Charlie Bamforth, professor of brewing science and chair of the Food Sciences and Technology dept. at UC-Davis, indicated that there aren’t any particular hops or types of beer that skunk more easily. It really just boils down to the color of glass used in the bottle. Although I’d guess that since pilsners and lagers have a more delicate taste, it’s easier to detect the skunked flavor in them.

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2 Responses to “Why does my beer smell like skunk?”

  1. Davina May 18, 2007 at 2:46 pm #

    Pilsners are only more susceptible to skunking because they’re traditionally bottled in green glass.

  2. Nicole May 18, 2007 at 3:25 pm #

    Hi, Davina! You’re absolutley right, of course. But in the sentence about pilsners, the type of glass is treated as a nonrestrictive clause (for the non-editor types, that means it’s not essential to the meaning) when, as you point out, it’s the only reason pilsners are more prone to skunking. Any other kind of beer in a green glass would be equally at risk.

    Isn’t it funny what we editors have to think about?

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