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A New Flavor In A Classic Beer

TroubleShooting

Joe Chapman — Little Rock, Arkansas asks,
Q

I have a question related to a persistent flavor that I first noticed in my favorite American major domestic lager about a year ago. I find the same flavor in other beers brewed by the same company. Not sure exactly how to describe the flavor but it reminds me of the type of straw used as bedding in a barn with a bit of earthiness added into the mix. Does this make any sense? If so, what could be contributing this flavor?

A
Thanks for the interesting question, Joe. I also enjoy all types of beer, so I went to the store and purchased a selection of beers in attempt to put a finger on