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Old 05-17-2012, 06:54 AM   #1
hexinduction
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Default honey and accidental spontaneous fermentation?

Hey all. I wasn't sure what forum to put this is, but since I am pretty sure I have lacto in the glass, I thought I would bring it here. I recently (about 7 weeks ago now) brewed a honey gold ale. The only problem was, I added the 1# of honey to the secondary. It has been in the bottle for 4 weeks now and just seems to continue to sour. Is there a chance that there was lacto in the unpasteurized honey, that could ferment in the beer? A lot of people seem to think that is highly improbable, but it sure tastes sour to me...

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Old 05-17-2012, 11:49 AM   #2
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There are lots of different kinds of souring bugs. The yeast-lab Lacto cultures are pretty wimpy (don't handle IBUs or alcohol very well) but there are wild Lacto and Pedio strains, as well as Acetobacter that can go to town in a beer.

Honey itself is pretty acidic when dissolved in water (or beer) so it might just be tartness from the honey.

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Old 05-17-2012, 03:02 PM   #3
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Quote:
Originally Posted by hexinduction View Post
Hey all. I wasn't sure what forum to put this is, but since I am pretty sure I have lacto in the glass, I thought I would bring it here. I recently (about 7 weeks ago now) brewed a honey gold ale. The only problem was, I added the 1# of honey to the secondary. It has been in the bottle for 4 weeks now and just seems to continue to sour. Is there a chance that there was lacto in the unpasteurized honey, that could ferment in the beer? A lot of people seem to think that is highly improbable, but it sure tastes sour to me...
Based upon my experiences with honey there is a good chance you could get some kind of souring bug in your beer because of not pasteurizing it beforehand. I usually add my honey at flameout with good success. There are other ways to pasteurize honey at home without losing any of the nice honey flavors but they look time-consuming.
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Old 05-17-2012, 03:25 PM   #4
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I never pastuerize, sulfite, or heat my honey at all when making mead, and have yet to get a sour bug. If it's infected, it's probably not the honey's fault.

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Old 05-18-2012, 05:11 PM   #5
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tartness from the honey, eh? would it ever mellow or is that just what I have? I don't mind it too much, just not what I expected. I never did see any signs of infection so maybe that's it.

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Old 05-19-2012, 02:26 AM   #6
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There's a good chance it'll get better as it ages. It sounds like there's a good chance it'll get more sour as it ages, too. I like sour beer, so I dunno.

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Old 06-19-2012, 04:42 PM   #7
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has anyone tried PURPOSELY "infecting their beer with wild yeast from honey? I was thinking of trying to spontaneously ferment an american amber ale with some honey from a local apiary.

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Old 06-19-2012, 05:02 PM   #8
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I brewed a different kind of Imperial Stout, with cocoa, Flaked Corn and 6lbs of Honey. 1.117 corrected OG. I heated the honey to 180*F for a few minutes, then cooled and pitched in primary (most of it, not all). It was brewed late December. By March it seemed to have settled at 1.022, 12.5%. It started bubbling again and it is currently down to 1.012 at 13.8%, still bubbling. Hopefully it's done by the end of the year... I guess my flash pasteurization failed. Still smells good. I assume some sort of infection, but it still smells good. I'm surprised it's still going with that high abv. I used WLP007 like I do with most of my Stouts. It's at about 89% attenuation right now. I mashed at 154. Hoping it ends up tasting good. It's definitely going to be different and dry. I would like to try some local honey to spontaneous ferment. Another future project.

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Old 06-19-2012, 05:21 PM   #9
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Riddei View Post
has anyone tried PURPOSELY "infecting their beer with wild yeast from honey? I was thinking of trying to spontaneously ferment an american amber ale with some honey from a local apiary.
Yeah, there was some guy on here maybe a year ago who cultured some yeast out of honey and his response to every thread about wild brewing was to use honey. You could pretty much count the minutes after a new thread was started until he popped in with an, "OMG USE HONEY IT IZ SO INCREDIBLE U WILL NEVER DRINK NE OTHER BEER AGAINZ" and then slip back into his beehive.
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