I've come to beleve that brewing with Rye often leads to undesired sulfur based 'burnt rubber' off-flavours. I'm pretty sure about it but I only have the following indirect evidence:

  • have recently had two Rye IPAs with burnt rubber off-flavour
  • found no less than 10 beers using Rye with comments about rubber on beer advocate and ratebeer
  • found quite some forum discussions where Rye and rubber are mentioned together

If I'm right I wonder why there isn't any information about this to be found anywhere in the net.

Have you seen this combination? Do you know why it happens? Does Rye somehow promote sulfur based off-flavours?

  • 1
    have you looked to the converse - the number of postings/beer reviews that mention rubber without rye?
    – mdma
    Mar 16, 2014 at 15:40
  • I've tried to do that, yes. It's extremely hard. Searchable ratebeer comments would be great for such statistics.
    – markus
    Mar 16, 2014 at 16:21

1 Answer 1


I have brewed dozens and dozens of rye beers...maybe more than most people, and I have never encountered that. I'd say that either you're extremely sensitive to something about rye or you're misinterpreting the cause.

  • Thanks for your answer. I'm sure I'm not overly sensitive to burnt rubber :) Most people can smell and taste it in that respective brew. But it may in fact just be a coincidence that I've had this only with Rye beers. It's definitely not autolysis, most probably not UV and hops... maybe bacteria/yeast combo. I was just wondering if Rye maybe has some compounds that would promote the growth of bacteria that create skunky/rubbery sulfur compounds.
    – markus
    Mar 16, 2014 at 16:28
  • If bacteria then added during bottling.
    – markus
    Mar 16, 2014 at 17:34

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