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Home Brew Forums > Home Brewing Beer > Lambic & Wild Brewing > Funky Imperial Stout?
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Old 02-01-2011, 02:57 PM   #1
godfathermg57
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Default Funky Imperial Stout?

So right now I've got 5 gallons of an imperial stout in the primary (~1.094 OG). Yesterday I came up with the crazy idea that I should split the batch, with 4 gallons being racked onto cocoa and vanilla, and 1 gallon being siphoned into a glass container and putting Brett or some kind of other sour yeast in it.

So a few questions:

1) Has anyone ever made a funky imperial stout (or something similar) and if so what were the results?

2) I've never used sour yeast, but I've seen people mention they have trouble with abv>9%. Where can I get a strain that can handle higher percentages? Any bottle dregs that you know of?

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Old 02-01-2011, 04:22 PM   #2
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I know the blog: madfermentationist did an imperial stout that had brett in the secondary. might be a good read for a bit of information.

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Old 02-01-2011, 05:41 PM   #3
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Jolly Pumpkin makes a fairly robust sour stout called Madrugada Obscura. To my palate the sour didn't work so well with the bitterness, but YMMV.

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Old 02-01-2011, 07:06 PM   #4
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Originally Posted by Guess42 View Post
I know the blog: madfermentationist did an imperial stout that had brett in the secondary. might be a good read for a bit of information.
That batch turned out well, a Courage Russian Imperial Stout clone with Brett A (which isn't for sale any more): http://www.themadfermentationist.com...ial-stout.html

Brett can certainly take the high gravity and give you some funk, but if you want sour you'd proably have to go with bottle dregs since the bacteria White Labs and Wyeast sell are on the timid end of the spectrum. Jolly Pumpkin dregs are great if you can get your hands on a bottle or two, Fantome is also known to have bugs that will sour big beers.

We just bottled a sour porter/stout that spent a year in a bourbon barrel with all manner of bugs. Surprisingly it "only" got down to 1.014 (from ~1.080), but the sweetness adds a nice balance to the acid and roast.
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Old 02-01-2011, 11:26 PM   #5
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I have a bottle of Saint Somewhere Saison... it's a 7.3% alcohol saison so I figure the dregs should handle higher alcohol. Any idea if that would (probably) work? Should I just pitch the dregs in during secondary?

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Old 02-02-2011, 03:44 AM   #6
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Old 02-02-2011, 02:15 PM   #7
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I have a bottle of Saint Somewhere Saison... it's a 7.3% alcohol saison so I figure the dregs should handle higher alcohol. Any idea if that would (probably) work? Should I just pitch the dregs in during secondary?
I believe those beers just have Brett, so it would be fine to add some funk, but it won't make the beer sour.
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Old 02-11-2011, 02:57 AM   #8
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What about doing a split batch? Do it pseudo partigyle use your first runnings for the majority of the brew. Then say 2gallons worth or so of a 6 gal batch can be lower gravity and hopped less. Either let lacto or pedio do work on the beer. After you get to where you want sour wise you can pasteurize the brew to stop the bacteria. Blend the two together.

My other idea is to make another blended beer. I think this is based on a New Belgium beer. Brew up a lambic style beer but using a stout malt bill. After primary and necesary aging is over add sour cherries or the like and then blend that with the stout. I'm playing with ideas for subsequent brews of my yearly imp. stout.

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Old 02-11-2011, 09:01 PM   #9
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I've done an Imperial Stout based off Madrugada Obscura. I used a 3rd generation slurry East Coast Yeast's Bugfarm3 (no longer available, he's on to the 5th version of the BF now) for souring after using if for a Flanders Red and a sour brown. That was a year ago. It soured very quickly and, while still in the carboy, is delicious! The fruity sourness is really balanced and complemented well by the roasted coffee & chocolate notes from the grain.

My version had an OG around 1.108. I did another version of the same recipe for a group barrel this past fall. We've got 50+ gallons of 1.085 OG version aging in a 23 year old brandy barrel. I used a pitch of Bugfarm4, along with some 3rd generation Roselare and a mix of other bugs I put together. For the group version, everyone fermented theirs clean with Ardennes, and I split my 5 gallons between my blend and the Roselare to for primary fermentation. We then inoculated the entire batch via my 5 gallons and the Bugfarm4. At last taste it is start to develop a nice sourness as well.

Here's a link to the recipe I used:
http://noaccountingfor.blogspot.com/...ark-night.html

and to the group recipe:
http://noaccountingfor.blogspot.com/...wers-bomb.html
and photos:
http://noaccountingfor.blogspot.com/...rrel-fill.html

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Old 02-27-2011, 01:57 AM   #10
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I just found this thread searching for stuff on Sour RIS, since I wanted to see results compared to mine. Mine was actually unintentional - I made a 1.126 RIS and the fermentation was stuck at 1.080 after about a month. I had also been fermenting a wild ale next to it with B. Lambicus and Lactobacillus in it along with some Consecration dregs. I tried adding champagne yeast, no results. So one day I took a look at the RIS and it somehow miraculously had signs of fermentation and a krausen on top. Apparently the wild yeast had managed to migrate or (more likely) I had been taking gravity readings of the wild ale and didn't clean the thief well enough. Either way, the beer has now been aging over a year and I recently kegged it. It has gone down to 1.026 (11.9% ABV) and is actually pretty damn good. Strong cherry pie sour notes, but an undertone of sweetness that balances out nicely. I can't be 100% certain about exactly what fermented it but I doubt if it was something else that infected it from my house it would taste this good.

Here was the recipe if interested:

Amount Item Type % or IBU
20.00 lb Munich Malt, Dark (15.5 SRM) Grain 67.80 %
2.00 lb Crystal Malt - Extra Dark (155.0 SRM) Grain 6.78 %
2.00 lb Roasted Barley (500.0 SRM) Grain 6.78 %
1.00 lb Black Malt (550.0 SRM) Grain 3.39 %
1.00 lb Crystal Malt - Dark (75.0 SRM) Grain 3.39 %
2.00 oz Warrior [15.80 %] (90 min) Hops 77.4 IBU
2.00 lb Candi Syrup, D2 (80.0 SRM) Sugar 6.78 %
1.50 lb Molasses (80.0 SRM) Sugar 5.08 %
1 Pkgs Super High Gravity Ale (White Labs #WLP099) Yeast-Ale

+ B. Lambicus, Lactobacillus, Consecration dregs

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