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Old 05-09-2013, 12:57 PM   #1
malweth
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Default Flanders Red, 6 month tasting

I tasted my Flanders last weekend when I was finishing up another beer (Westvleteren 12 clone). It was only slightly sour with a very strong cherry flavor and it was very oakey, which faded after a while in the glass. I used an medium toast oak spiral.

I know it's only 6 months, but how much more sour should it get? It's barely noticeable next to my Berliner Weisse.

Will the oak drop out more over time? (From other oak threads, it seems yes - somewhat... but this is my first oaked beer).

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Old 05-09-2013, 01:33 PM   #2
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Originally Posted by malweth View Post
I tasted my Flanders last weekend when I was finishing up another beer (Westvleteren 12 clone). It was only slightly sour with a very strong cherry flavor and it was very oakey, which faded after a while in the glass. I used an medium toast oak spiral.

I know it's only 6 months, but how much more sour should it get? It's barely noticeable next to my Berliner Weisse.

Will the oak drop out more over time? (From other oak threads, it seems yes - somewhat... but this is my first oaked beer).
In my experience (with mine and friends' Flanders Reds), it isn't until after the 12 month mark but really closer to 18 months that they develop that nice complex vinous sour flavor.
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Old 05-09-2013, 01:38 PM   #3
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Also did you do anything to remove some of the tannins from the oak spiral (boiling, soaking in something, etc)? If you just dropped it in, I can see why it is very oaky.

I have oak cubes in my 2 sour batches, but they were already soaked in something or lightly boiled prior to adding. I want the oak there mainly for a bug hideout and will use them to innoculate future batches.

Also, not sure what bugs you pitched, or whether Flanders Reds are supposed to have lacto, pedio, and brett? But I only used the dregs from Odells Deconstruction and a Jolly Pumpkin sour. They are both really sour already (5 month mark) and its first generation. Just starting to take on the brett character. My 1 gallon jug was fermented with only JP dregs. I might have to blend in some unsoured pale beer for balance. Jolly Pumpkin is the real deal for souring if you can find some.

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Old 05-09-2013, 01:38 PM   #4
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In my experience (with mine and friends' Flanders Reds), it isn't until after the 12 month mark but really closer to 18 months that they develop that nice complex vinous sour flavor.
Awesome. I was planning on letting it sit about 18 months... looks like I sample again in 6 months.

The flavor was really great - it's just the sour that wasn't there... and the oak was a bit too forward. It kind of tasted like a (very light) cherry wine.
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Old 05-09-2013, 01:41 PM   #5
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Also did you do anything to remove some of the tannins from the oak spiral (boiling, soaking in something, etc)? If you just dropped it in, I can see why it is very oaky.

I have oak cubes in my 2 sour batches, but they were already soaked in something or lightly boiled prior to adding. I want the oak there mainly for a bug hideout and will use them to innoculate future batches.
I did just drop it in... luckily tannins will definitely drop out a bit over time. I was also planning on dropping the same spiral in for batch #2 (when it's time to bottle / keg batch #1). Do you know if the oak tends to disintegrate, as I've heard can happen with chips?
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Old 05-09-2013, 01:45 PM   #6
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I think your spiral will be fine in future sours, at least for batch #2. My cubes look the same as they did when I pitched them initially and its been 5 months. I would guess 2-3 years before they really become a problem.

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Old 05-11-2013, 10:05 PM   #7
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You're souring time frame is going to depend on what you've pitched. There is a chart in Wild Brews that shows the timeline over which different yeasts and microbes are active and contributing to the beer's flavor, although I can't remember if that's for Flanders or Lambics.

JP dregs sound like the magic bullet for sours. Could excuse to keep a few bottles around just in case some homebrew needs the help.

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