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Home Brew Forums > Home Brewing Beer > Lambic & Wild Brewing > Easy Way to Make Sour Beers (1 gal wort + dregs)
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Old 07-13-2012, 05:12 PM   #211
Almighty
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I personally never rack for my sour beers. Traditionally, Lambics would stay on the primary yeast cake and malty Flanders beers would be racked after primary.

Racking is just another opportunity to pick up oxygen and that means acetic acid. If you racked, you would want to immediately after primary or add a bit of sugar to promote a bit of fermentation to scrub the oxygen.

I have never done side by side testing, but supposedly leaving the beer on the yeast cake will increase your funky flavors produced by the Brett. I guess the idea behind this is that it has a greater carbon source (yeast cake) to metabolize into different flavors.

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Old 07-13-2012, 06:15 PM   #212
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I personally never rack for my sour beers. Traditionally, Lambics would stay on the primary yeast cake and malty Flanders beers would be racked after primary.

Racking is just another opportunity to pick up oxygen and that means acetic acid. If you racked, you would want to immediately after primary or add a bit of sugar to promote a bit of fermentation to scrub the oxygen.

I have never done side by side testing, but supposedly leaving the beer on the yeast cake will increase your funky flavors produced by the Brett. I guess the idea behind this is that it has a greater carbon source (yeast cake) to metabolize into different flavors.
Thanks! That is perfect, and what I wanted to hear. I hate racking in general.
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Old 07-18-2012, 02:27 AM   #213
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My Orval dregs pale is now 4-5 months old. Cracked one at the weekend and the flavour balance is shifting. The smoke is softer,the fruits are only hinting at being there and this quiet yet attention demanding tart/sourness is there. Kind of makes you pucker up at the faint memory of sucking a lime

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Old 07-18-2012, 05:53 AM   #214
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Thanks, Almighty. The airlock wasn't totally dry, there was still a seal on it. I left out a potentially important detail in the video. I inoculated this one with dregs from a Cascade Kriek bottle, but it didn't have any activity for a good month. I decided to put some US05 in there, which caused an explosion of a fermentation... which I forgot to check on and made that mess in the airlock. It's been sitting like that for about 5 months. I suppose oxidation is possible, but I don't think that it is the cause. I haven't been brave enough to taste yet, but I suppose that will be something to do for next Homebrew Wednesday! I will definitely report back the tasting results in hopes you or someone else has an idea what caused this darkening.

Thanks again, Almighty, I really appreciate your responses here.
Well here is a tasting video. Sorry if it is long and boring. In short, I do think two of the beers were oxidized. I appreciate any feedback in advance!

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=MB9x...I&feature=plcp
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Old 07-18-2012, 08:06 PM   #215
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dantheman-
I checked out the video. Here are a couple suggestions I have:

Interesting that you got so much sourness in 6 months - how quickly did you have active fermentation?

I noticed you picked up a few off-flavors - solventy, vegetable (DMS), band-aid - solventy could come from oxidation mixed with phenols from the Brett - keep those airlocks filled up, the DMS might be from some bad bacteria that got started before the good ones could take control -I now make starters with the dregs (in original bottle) and wait till I have some activity if no activity then I will pitch in some Sacc with the dregs; Band-aid - either from the Brett or water with high level of Cl.

Color Difference - That is pretty strange especially since you tasted "barleywine flavors" which correspond to Malliard Reactions. So I did some google searching and Malliard Reactions can happen without heat. So here is a wild guess at what happened: For "browning" to occur you need amino acids and reducing sugars. Both are plentiful in beer - the browning process will spontaneously happen it is just generally a slow process in liquid and at room temperataure. So for one beer to become darker than the others there are a couple possibilities: higher temperature (increases reaction rate), more amino acids (more hot break (protein) that is broken down with organic acids to form amino acids or has a yeast that produces higher amounts of amino acids as a byproduct)

As for the ones you didn't like as much, let them ride a bit longer. And then I would blend with a non-sour base beer that you think it will work well with. For example, Guinness has a couple percent sour beer added. The trick to blending is to taste the beer before and then get a "taste vision" of where you want it to go.

Good Luck.

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Old 07-19-2012, 02:24 AM   #216
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dantheman-
I checked out the video. Here are a couple suggestions I have:

Interesting that you got so much sourness in 6 months - how quickly did you have active fermentation?

I noticed you picked up a few off-flavors - solventy, vegetable (DMS), band-aid - solventy could come from oxidation mixed with phenols from the Brett - keep those airlocks filled up, the DMS might be from some bad bacteria that got started before the good ones could take control -I now make starters with the dregs (in original bottle) and wait till I have some activity if no activity then I will pitch in some Sacc with the dregs; Band-aid - either from the Brett or water with high level of Cl.

Color Difference - That is pretty strange especially since you tasted "barleywine flavors" which correspond to Malliard Reactions. So I did some google searching and Malliard Reactions can happen without heat. So here is a wild guess at what happened: For "browning" to occur you need amino acids and reducing sugars. Both are plentiful in beer - the browning process will spontaneously happen it is just generally a slow process in liquid and at room temperataure. So for one beer to become darker than the others there are a couple possibilities: higher temperature (increases reaction rate), more amino acids (more hot break (protein) that is broken down with organic acids to form amino acids or has a yeast that produces higher amounts of amino acids as a byproduct)

As for the ones you didn't like as much, let them ride a bit longer. And then I would blend with a non-sour base beer that you think it will work well with. For example, Guinness has a couple percent sour beer added. The trick to blending is to taste the beer before and then get a "taste vision" of where you want it to go.

Good Luck.
Fermentation lag - The one that tasted best had an active fermentation pretty quickly. I want to say within a few days. It was the least sour of the bunch, but still sour. The Temptation dregs only beer took longer. I want to say around a couple of weeks. The darker beer never had an active fermentation that I saw. I left it for a month before deciding to pitch some US05, which gave it a very active fermentation. The wort was a normal color at that time.

Each of the bottles used had a small starter wort added to them for a week before pitching. It is very possible that bad bacteria got into the darker beer.

Each of the fermenters were kept in the same closet under the same conditions, and started with the same wort. However, the darker fermenter had a blowoff that I failed to clean up! Oxidation and an outside infection probably could have occurred in this one.

I don't have much hope for the darker one, but I will hang on to it. Has anyone gotten nail polish out of Russian River Temptation dregs? This fermenter too could have suffered from an almost dry airlock, so oxidation is one culprit for sure. It also hasn't developed a pellicle.

Thanks for the feedback and the view hit, I appreciate it, Almighty.
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Old 07-20-2012, 03:44 PM   #217
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Just tried two varieties of this that I started in October. Both were soured with jolly punkin dregs.


Both were absolutely amazing!
I have been lazy lately and not carbing and bottling. Instead I rack into a gallon jug and drink it still. I mostly make mead and cider so bubbles aren't all that important

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Old 07-20-2012, 10:41 PM   #218
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Few question guys as i am new to lambics,

The addition of hops is not required correct? But rather it would add complexity/taste. For a five gallon batch (I dont see myself going back to mini 1 gallon brews) how many dregs (cake on the bottom of the bottle?) would i need? Starter required?

Thanks

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Old 08-31-2012, 05:36 AM   #219
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I had straight 2-row come out about halfway to that color. I DID intentionally let the airlock dry out on that gallon for a little vinegar character because I was trying to clone Duchesse and was trying to see if that helped. I've only done about 10 of these and each has been its own color. Some light, some orange, some brown. Fun to see the differences since I always use 2-row at 3 IBU at 1.040.
Any luck with the Duchess clone?
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Old 10-02-2013, 09:06 AM   #220
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An update on how my 1 gallon sour beer experiments have been going (2 years in):

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