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Old 02-14-2012, 07:28 PM   #1
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Default Blending advice

Blending veterans, care to share experience/advice?

I've got an 18 month old and a year old sour that I'll be bottling soon (both in the .094 range). I'd like to steal a gallon or two from each to blend, with a quasi-solera project in mind. With that blend I'd like to add some cherries and another gallon or two of some 4/5 month old sours.

Questions:

  • Should I be purging vessels with CO2 when blending?
  • Should the young wort get added to the blend first and then wait some months before adding fruit, or could the fruit and new wort be added simultaneously?
  • Will the bugs in the young wort keep working in that environment once blended or should I pitch a little extra brett/dregs after a few weeks?
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Aging: Sour Solera, Flemish Gold, Repas du Matin Sour Table Beer, Flanders Red, Anejo Rum Sour, Brett Brown, Sour blonde, Funky Barleywine Barrel, Sour Rye Whiskey Barrel
Bottled: Cherry Oud Bruin, Le Batard Solera, Sour Stout, Wild Ale, Brett Belgian Rye Stout, Berliner Weisse, FlandersPale, Brett Old Ale, Funky Fig Saison, Mango BGSA, Rapture RIS, Brett Saison
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Old 02-14-2012, 09:03 PM   #2
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You don't need to add any more dregs. There will be enough active bugs to continue fermentation. Since you're adding more fermentables I wouldn't purge the vessel unless you will have a lot of headspace but others may disagree. I definitely don't think you will hurt anything by purging. I say blend everything together at once.

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Old 02-14-2012, 09:03 PM   #3
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Ryan did a good write up. http://ryanbrews.blogspot.com/2011/03/blending-and-fruiting-lambics-my.html

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Old 02-15-2012, 03:13 PM   #4
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Quote:
Originally Posted by ReverseApacheMaster View Post
You don't need to add any more dregs. There will be enough active bugs to continue fermentation. Since you're adding more fermentables I wouldn't purge the vessel unless you will have a lot of headspace but others may disagree. I definitely don't think you will hurt anything by purging. I say blend everything together at once.
Thanks Reverse. I just looked through some of the blog posts on your solera, good read (and sounds incredible).

I'm thinking I may end up keeping the fruit out of the main solera and just steal a few gallons later this year to add cherries in some smaller fermenters.

Slightly off-topic, but sort of related, has anyone used 50L barrels for sour aging? I'm assuming the oxygen permeability would be more than a full barrel, but much less than the small 5 gallon whiskey barrels.

My dad and I are in the very beginning stages of rehabbing an early 19th century stone root-cellar on my folks' property in Virginia. If all goes as planned, this space would be perfect for a temp stable barrel area. The kicker is it has a super narrow doorway which I don't think will accommodate the middle diameter of a full barrel, so I'm thinking of rigging a few Hoff Stevens kegs up as fermenters or ideally using some mid-sized barrels like the 50L if anyone has used them with any success
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Aging: Sour Solera, Flemish Gold, Repas du Matin Sour Table Beer, Flanders Red, Anejo Rum Sour, Brett Brown, Sour blonde, Funky Barleywine Barrel, Sour Rye Whiskey Barrel
Bottled: Cherry Oud Bruin, Le Batard Solera, Sour Stout, Wild Ale, Brett Belgian Rye Stout, Berliner Weisse, FlandersPale, Brett Old Ale, Funky Fig Saison, Mango BGSA, Rapture RIS, Brett Saison
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