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Why Isn't My Beer Clear?

Hazy beer is usually more cosmetic than catastrophic. But if you find that your homebrew is consistently cloudy, look into one of these common culprits.

Dave Carpenter Apr 17, 2015 - 4 min read

Why Isn't My Beer Clear? Primary Image

Dine-in-the-dark restaurants such as blindekuh (Basel and Zürich) and Dans le Noir (London, Paris, St. Petersburg, and Barcelona) have achieved international fame for gustatory experiences in which guests are denied the pleasure of looking at their meals. Aficionados claim that limiting the diner to flavor, aroma, texture, and sound enhances one’s enjoyment of each course. Detractors say the whole thing is nothing more than marketing.

I’ll try anything once, but it’s undeniable that we eat with our eyes before we tuck into what lies before us. And it’s no different with beer. Before we even sniff that snifter, we’ve already made judgments (some conscious, others not) about the beer in the glass. And one of the first things we notice is clarity.

Some beers are meant to be cloudy. There are, of course, the obvious examples such as wit and Weiß, but even a heavily dry hopped double IPA can take on a hazy visage thanks to all of those hop-derived organoleptic substances. But what about a hazy helles or an opaque amber? Sometimes it’s a flaw, and here’s how it could happen.

You have a good, old-fashioned case of chill haze.

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