When yeast ferments beer, it produces more than 500 different compounds. Many of these compounds give beer its characteristic flavor and aroma. One of these compounds — one that is usually considered undesirable — is diacetyl.
Diacetyl gives a buttery, butterscotch-like flavor to beer and is influenced by fermentation temperature, aeration level, bacterial contamination, and the yeast strain. Diacetyl levels vary during the course of fermentation and maturation. Better understand diacetyl as well as how to control it in your beers with Brew Your Own’s Technical Editor Ashton Lewis.
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