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Old 04-21-2013, 02:13 AM   #1
loftybrewer
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Default Can I score foreign brett from unfiltered wine?

I am not experienced in wines and wineries. I do, however, understand that certain wineries let the wild yeast do their thing, while others sanitize and live in fear of Brettanomyces outbreaks. The hardiness of wild yeasts and the Brett genus would lead me to think that any unfiltered naturally-fermented bottle of wine would harbor foreign funk that I can use in brewing. Do any of you have any information on this? What styles are unfiltered, what wineries just let the juice "go", anything? BTW, I was at the PA Renaissance Faire last year and I SWEAR that the Concord wine they sell had Brett involved in fermentation...

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Old 04-21-2013, 07:22 AM   #2
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One wine that is considered bretty is Chateau Musar. I haven't picked any up yet but you would likely need a sterile filtering setup to get the brett from the bottle if any made it into the bottle. I've been considering giving this a try actually.

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Old 04-21-2013, 02:51 PM   #3
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I wouldn't expect to get anything. With the exception of sparkling wines, they are still and packaged in bottles that can't take pressure, so they kill off the yeast before bottling.

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Old 04-21-2013, 04:10 PM   #4
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Yeah, most wines are dosed with sulfites so I doubt you'd find much that's viable.

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Old 04-24-2013, 06:55 PM   #5
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There is a resurgence in so called "natural" wines. That is where I would look. I remember Chad Yakobson saying he’d had some luck isolating Brett from some Australian wines. Wines tend to have very low residual extract, so attenuation in the bottle isn’t as big a concern as it is for beer.

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Old 04-24-2013, 09:44 PM   #6
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Quote:
Originally Posted by smokinghole View Post
One wine that is considered bretty is Chateau Musar. I haven't picked any up yet but you would likely need a sterile filtering setup to get the brett from the bottle if any made it into the bottle. I've been considering giving this a try actually.
highly recommended. varies hugely from year to year, certain vintages can fetch a pretty penny, but totally unique.
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Old 04-25-2013, 10:15 PM   #7
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Originally Posted by Oldsock View Post
There is a resurgence in so called "natural" wines. That is where I would look. I remember Chad Yakobson saying he’d had some luck isolating Brett from some Australian wines. Wines tend to have very low residual extract, so attenuation in the bottle isn’t as big a concern as it is for beer.
True enough that "natural" wines are definitely a big thing right now. I actually sold wine for a while here in NYC for a friend of mine who started an import/distribution company focused on small production "natural" wines.

The problem with that, though, is that anyone can call anything "natural." When it comes to wine, the word has no empirical meaning and most "natural" wines still contain sulfites (for good reason), though there are a number that contain lower levels of sulfites.

Some wines will be labeled "biodynamic" or "practicing organic" and these terms DO have meaning. However, neither mean sulfite free. The only way to be certain that a wine doesn't contain sulfites (and, thus, would be much more likely to contain something active) is if it is either labeled sulfite free (no sulfites) or "certified organic" (no added sulfites-can have naturally occuring sulfites). So that's what I'd look for if I was trying to grow something out of a bottle of wine.

I'll say this much, though: I've had some sulfite free wines that were not bad but, unfortunately, have yet to have one that blew me away and none that have had an interesting brett character that I'd want to replicate in a beer (not saying it's not out there, just that I haven't come across it).

Now, all this is based on the assumption that that wines with added sulfites contain no VIABLE yeast/brett. I would think that to be the case but I do not know that for a fact.

If that is not so then PLEASE, someone culture some brett from Terre di Trente Carricante (a Sicilian white). The pronounced brett character it exhibits is one of the most delicious expressions of brett flavor that I've ever encountered in beer or wine. The wine maker is "practicing organic" and I believe that the wine has lower levels of added sulfites.
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