I brewed a saison and added lemon zest for the last five minutes of the boil. At the time, it seemed like a lot of lemon zest, but I was following a recipe. The beer was in primary for a week, secondary for a week, and in bottles for two weeks. When I tasted it, I could not detect any lemon at all - not in the smell or taste. However, when I rinsed out the bottle with hot water, the lemon scent became extremely potent - almost like Lemon Pledge.

My question is: Is there something unique about lemon zest that would have caused this effect, or did I simply not add enough?

1 Answer 1


It's possible that the aromatics went volatile in the boil and was then gasses off in fermentation. Leaving only oils that manifest aroma at warm temps.

Try the zest as a secondary addition, or a flame out addition or both.

Also there could be other flavors and aromas over powering the zest.

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