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Old 01-26-2005, 12:24 AM   #11
Janx
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Yep. They just have tastier bacteria. You could move to Lambeek

It's definitely not fair. Not fair at all. Especially since they just leave it sitting out and get the best beer in the world.

If you're ever in Brussels, DEFINITELY go to the Cantillon brewery. It is an amazing example of old-school lambic technique and what not to do (unless you're making Lambic in Belgium). They make the beer once a year in the Fall, presumably because the wild yeasts are right then. The mash is done in the open. The wort is pumped into a shallow pan in a dusty, dirty room, where the roof is leaky and open to the outside world. There are bags of hops sitting around open and oxidizing at room temp. The brew is put into barrels that are not really cleaned and certainly not sanitized. They foam and gush all over one another and the whole place reeks of lambic. It's a delightful mess!

And then they let you sample the nectar of the good that is the result of all this. It's really something.

I'm enjoying a pale ale we made a few weeks ago right now. We have a pilsner and a porter on tap too. The porter is on the nitrogen tap. I'm pretty sure I have a homebrew buzz, too, and I KNOW I like it

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Old 01-26-2005, 12:25 AM   #12
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Originally Posted by rightwingnut
OK, so how do the Belgians get away with it with their Lambics? They leave the wort (prononuced "wert"...ick!) exposed overnight to be "spontaneously fermented" by wild yeast and bacteria. What, they just have really yummy bacteria over there? That's not fair! I have a homebrew buzz right now, and I think I like it.
I had a batch get contaminated one time, it kinda looked like well lard or greese floating on top, since it was just on top, I bottled it leaving about an inch in my secondary, and the beer was awesome. I have a batch right now in the secondary, that well seems to have a very faint light white stuff on top. I am beginning to worry, but its a strong beer and needs to go at least another week. Hopefully it will turn out ok, I am not about to pull the airlock to smell but the other beer that was contaminated still smelled good. Then I read somewhere that sometimes mold gets on top, but the beer underneath is still good. I do have patches of bubbles in the middle and throughout the top, I hope its just a sign that its fermenting still, but I guess I will let you know in another week.
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Old 01-26-2005, 12:34 AM   #13
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I've seen that same "scum" infection you describe.

It sure seems to be a mostly visual thing. The beers I have seen it occur with turn out fine. Maybe it is some sort of surface mold or something? It really doesn't seem to affect the flavor. With the bad infections, you can tell right away from the taste. This one looks bad, but doesn't seem to affect the flavor at all...

Anyway, good luck! I bet you'll be OK

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Old 01-26-2005, 09:33 AM   #14
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I've seen that same "scum" infection you describe.

It sure seems to be a mostly visual thing. The beers I have seen it occur with turn out fine. Maybe it is some sort of surface mold or something? It really doesn't seem to affect the flavor. With the bad infections, you can tell right away from the taste. This one looks bad, but doesn't seem to affect the flavor at all...

Anyway, good luck! I bet you'll be OK
I guess its more of a film than anything. Just a film on top, but to be sure I will leave the film behind.
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Old 03-16-2005, 01:29 PM   #15
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When will you know, by smell or taste or whatever, that you have a contaminated batch?

Thanks

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Old 03-16-2005, 06:02 PM   #16
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You mentioned a piney flavor Janx. This leads me to believe that my first batch was infected. I still have a ton of bottles from that first batch, I was thinking it would age and taste better but it just doesn't taste good. Pine flavor is too much.

Now my second batch on the other hand is awesome! An Irish red that came out a little darker than expected, but tastes great. Love the roasted barley that was used in it.

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