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Old 12-13-2012, 12:49 AM   #1
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Default Bottling a sour after 4 months?

I have a sour red that has been sitting in the secondary for 4 months. The first sour I did I gave it 365 days and bottled. But because I like to keep rotating and have new batches going I thought why not bottle this now and sit on the bottles for another 6 months? I haven't attempted it yet because I don't want to possibly mess up the souring process. So will bottling my sour red now ruin it's ability to become more complex over time?

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Old 12-13-2012, 02:53 AM   #2
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At 4 months you'll likely end up with bottle bombs. Bulk aging is better anyway.

You can't rush sours.

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Old 12-14-2012, 02:03 PM   #3
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Let it sit. 1. Tastes better. Lots better.
2. KABOOM!!

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Old 12-14-2012, 03:05 PM   #4
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I have done it with a BDSA 'aged' with Brettanomyces Lambicus for ~4 months. When I bottled it, it tasted like a leather glove. (I can't make that up.) It did mature in the bottle over the next year into a beautiful strong ale with cherry pie and light funk notes. Would it have happened quicker with bulk again? Probably. Did I get bottle bombs? No.

That being said, I bulk age exclusively now.

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Old 12-19-2012, 05:03 PM   #5
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There are actually a fair number of brewers (e.g., Kristen England, Gabe Fletcher etc.) who feel that Brettanomyces fermenting under pressure during bottle conditioning is essential to produce the character they want. In my limited experience pitching Brett at bottling I've found I get more character faster than I do with bulk aging. Haven't found a great explanation, not sure if it is a pressure thing, or a volatiles thing.

If your gravity is stable I don't see an issue bottling a young sour, but that is a big if.

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Old 12-19-2012, 08:24 PM   #6
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Oldsock View Post
There are actually a fair number of brewers (e.g., Kristen England, Gabe Fletcher etc.) who feel that Brettanomyces fermenting under pressure during bottle conditioning is essential to produce the character they want. In my limited experience pitching Brett at bottling I've found I get more character faster than I do with bulk aging. Haven't found a great explanation, not sure if it is a pressure thing, or a volatiles thing.

If your gravity is stable I don't see an issue bottling a young sour, but that is a big if.
Mike, this gives me more hope for the BGSA I bottled a bit too early - I soured it with Roeselare for 8 months and it smelled awesome. Problem was, I didn't taste the sample until I was part way through bottling. Tasted like dirty blankets dipped in horse feet. Hopefully time will treat it well in the bottle.
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Old 12-21-2012, 02:32 AM   #7
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My first two sours I pitches Roeselare blend for fermentation, secondaried with no added bugs. I see everyone talking about pitching more bugs for the secondary. Is this absolutely necessary? My lambic when I bottled was loaded with pellicle. I also decided that I'll just let me flanders party together for a bit longer.

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Old 12-21-2012, 05:38 AM   #8
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I didn't even secondary for any of mine at all, and it came out beautifully. Also, time in the bottle = goodness.

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