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Old 10-02-2012, 01:13 AM   #1
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Default Advice on directin for a good first sour...

Hi folks! I am setting up a series of long-aging brews and I would like to add a sour to the mix. I have never made a sour, either by accident or on purpose. Does anyone have a suggestion for a fairly reliable first sour? I am a fan of commercial geuze examples that I have tried, and I have a few Flanders red and oud bruin examples ready for tasting but I haven't gotten to them yet.

Does anyone have any pointers or suggestions to get me rolling? Thanks!!
-Blake

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Old 10-02-2012, 01:22 PM   #2
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I'm no expert but I'd recommend a berliner weiss. A few of the online homebrew stores still have the Wyeast 3191 BW yeast/bacteria in stock and that makes it pretty easy.

Another option is to do a simple extract brew with 1/2 light and 1/2 wheat DME and some malto dextrin and use the roselare yeast or lambic blends.

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Old 10-02-2012, 01:33 PM   #3
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+1 on berliner weiss. But if you want a long-aged sour, I think a Flanders-style sour is a good place to start. A sour pale ale is pretty fail-proof.

8 lbs pils
2 lbs wheat
1 lb c-10
0.5 oz EKG
Rosealare yeast pack (or whatever you want, really. I did Westmalle yeast + dregs from various sours)

I'm no expert, but after making a few sours I realized that the recipe doesn't matter that much. It is the fermentation and blending.

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Old 10-02-2012, 02:27 PM   #4
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I'm on the six month mark of my Flanders Red. I did a recipe written by Jeff Sparrow who authored the book Wild Brew which is kind of the go to book for sour beer brewing. I pitched a packet of Wyeast Rosealare and so far at six months I've got a hint of sourness but really not a whole lot. More than anything it hangs on the back of your tongue in the aftertaste.

Before you jump to any conclusions I would continue sampling all the styles. You are in this for the long hull so you might as well start with a style you really like. Then, try and find a pre-made recipe kit that will get you to that style.

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Old 10-02-2012, 06:30 PM   #5
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If you are a fan of gueuze then you should start off making lambic. Very simple beer. You let time do all the hard work.

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Old 10-03-2012, 12:48 AM   #6
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Tonight I tried cuvée Rene gueuze for the first time and I very much enjoyed it! So much so that I ordered a copy of Wild Brews. If it is possible to shoot for something similar to that while learning the process i would be happy. I do not mind long aging at all, but I am a bit sensitive to blending because I don't have so much space that I can have a lot of different sours going and still have all my normal beers.

Which reminds me of a question... What concerns should I have with my normal beers? Should I have separate siphons, bottling equipment, etc.?

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Old 10-03-2012, 12:53 AM   #7
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I am not an expert I know that everything plastic should be kept separate. I even have separate plastic stir bars for my starters.

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Old 10-03-2012, 01:47 AM   #8
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You can use the same equipment, just be diligent about your cleaning and sanitation.

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Old 10-03-2012, 02:34 AM   #9
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Quote:
Originally Posted by ReverseApacheMaster View Post
You can use the same equipment, just be diligent about your cleaning and sanitation.
Some people say that. Some people say otherwise. Replacing plastic equipment is cheap. Get a racking cane, some tubing, a wine thief and test tube for hydrometer samples and an airlock. Put it in a bag and set it somewhere else and label it clearly. It's easy enough, cheap and has no real risk.
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Old 10-09-2012, 01:49 AM   #10
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Yeah, I think for the limited expense I will just buy some additional plastics. If making sours works out, great, otherwise I will just have spares. My copy of "Wild Brews" has arrived, so as soon as I am done with the Proulx "cider" book I am gonna move on to that. There is obviously enough knowledge required here to do a bit more study. I will probably order ingredients in a week or so and do the brew by the end of the month!

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