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Old 01-09-2014, 08:07 PM   #11
elenchus
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I read that adding some oak cubes is a good idea to simulate the barrel environment. It warned to eliminate as much of the oak flavor as possible prior to pitching to avoid it creeping into the beer, which is something I have to investigate more. I have some oak cubes on hand and plan on trying it out in at least one of the carboys.

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Old 01-09-2014, 10:01 PM   #12
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The beers have alcohol and hops. Do you really think he will have any succes with lacto.
doesn't it depend on the strain of lacto? aren't certain ones more tolerant of hops and alcohol than others?
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Old 01-10-2014, 12:51 AM   #13
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doesn't it depend on the strain of lacto? aren't certain ones more tolerant of hops and alcohol than others?
I think the hops would probably be more of a problem. However, he may find a strain that could tolerate both. If he does, it will take a very long time to have any effect; Passedpawn suggested he could get good results in a couple of months, which I think is extremely unlikely even with a tolerant strain.
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Old 01-10-2014, 03:49 AM   #14
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I think the hops would probably be more of a problem. However, he may find a strain that could tolerate both. If he does, it will take a very long time to have any effect; Passedpawn suggested he could get good results in a couple of months, which I think is extremely unlikely even with a tolerant strain.
My sour beers got sour between 2 and 3 months. That was with lacto added in the beginning though, to unfermented wort. I wasn't really thinking when I said that... I'd like to retract it

I agree with what you said: with the presence of alcohol and low pH, the bacteria might do nothing at all. I haven't had that experience, but it's what I remember reading when I was doing sours.
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Old 01-10-2014, 07:05 PM   #15
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Quote:
Originally Posted by elenchus
I read that adding some oak cubes is a good idea to simulate the barrel environment. It warned to eliminate as much of the oak flavor as possible prior to pitching to avoid it creeping into the beer, which is something I have to investigate more. I have some oak cubes on hand and plan on trying it out in at least one of the carboys.
You can imagine the things this will, and will not do to simulate the barrel environment. I like to boil, then soak in alcohol before use.
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Old 01-10-2014, 07:11 PM   #16
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My sour beers got sour between 2 and 3 months. That was with lacto added in the beginning though, to unfermented wort.
So you're talking more the Berliner Weisse method, developing acidity with lacto prior to pitching yeast? Typically this takes ~48 hrs @ 100-105F, and is really the opposite of the situation here. I may be misunderstanding.
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Old 01-10-2014, 07:37 PM   #17
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So you're talking more the Berliner Weisse method, developing acidity with lacto prior to pitching yeast? Typically this takes ~48 hrs @ 100-105F, and is really the opposite of the situation here. I may be misunderstanding.
No. With Flanders Red and Brown, I used a blend (Roeselare), which contained the lacto and pedio along with the sacch and brett. That beer got sour between 2 and 3 months. In fact, with regards to flavor, it was at its best at around 4 or 5 months. I fermented for nearly a year and it got puckeringly sour! I've still got a lot of the Flanders Red in bottles if anyone is in the area.

With respect to my Berlinerweisse, I added lacto about 2 days before the sacch (I also bottled with lacto). IIRC, the beer was visibly fermenting when I added the sacch.
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Old 01-10-2014, 09:06 PM   #18
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No. With Flanders Red and Brown, I used a blend (Roeselare), which contained the lacto and pedio along with the sacch and brett. That beer got sour between 2 and 3 months. In fact, with regards to flavor, it was at its best at around 4 or 5 months. I fermented for nearly a year and it got puckeringly sour! I've still got a lot of the Flanders Red in bottles if anyone is in the area.

With respect to my Berlinerweisse, I added lacto about 2 days before the sacch (I also bottled with lacto). IIRC, the beer was visibly fermenting when I added the sacch.
2-3 month with Roeselare, eh? That seems unusually fast. I do like my sour beers very acidic though. If it's not a matter of temp, maybe it's one of taste or some other form of voodoo...

Ok, so back to the OP, staggered pitching in carboys. The only other thing I can think of that may help would be racking to a 5 gal barrel. I'm usually opposed to these due to high surface to volume ratio and concerns of excessive oxygen exposure and acetic acid production, but situation being what it is, this is about the only thing I can think of that may help develop acidity.

Here's a better idea: brew more sour beers, and when you taste the batch that is so sour it strips the enamel from your teeth, you will be glad you have a more lightly acidic batch to blend with.
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Old 01-10-2014, 09:11 PM   #19
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2-3 month with Roeselare, eh? That seems unusually fast. I do like my sour beers very acidic though. If it's not a matter of temp, maybe it's one of taste or some other form of voodoo...

Ok, so back to the OP, staggered pitching in carboys. The only other thing I can think of that may help would be racking to a 5 gal barrel. I'm usually opposed to these due to high surface to volume ratio and concerns of excessive oxygen exposure and acetic acid production, but situation being what it is, this is about the only thing I can think of that may help develop acidity.

Here's a better idea: brew more sour beers, and when you taste the batch that is so sour it strips the enamel from your teeth, you will be glad you have a more lightly acidic batch to blend with.
My notes from my first two Flanders batches:
Flanders Red, Batch #1
Brewing Classic Styles recipe, on Roeselare. Fermented @ 75F.
  • 2 wks: Slight sour
  • 2 mo: Nicely sour, slight tart
  • 2.5 mo: medium sour;
  • 4 mo: added toasted oak chips, 2# dried currants
  • 4.5 mo: noticebly tart, drier than before, acidic.
  • 6 mo: added 1# cherries
  • 6.5 mo: bottled.
If you want sour and funk, it has it in spades. I have some Russian River Consecration to compare it to and mine is a little more sour.

There was a little too much acetic acid in there from too much fiddling (sampling!) during the 6 months. I let too much O2 in there.

It's been in the bottles for about 5 months. They are perfectly carbonated, probably about 2 volumes CO2. They foam perfectly, but won't hold a head for the pH I guess.

Flanders Red, Batch #2
  • Pitched onto the yeast/currant/oak/cherries cake of the previous batch.
  • Sat undisturbed for 4 months.
  • After 4 mo, transfered to secondary.
Tastes perfect right now, does not have that acetic acid of the last one. I'm going to let it go for at least another 6 months.
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Old 01-10-2014, 09:27 PM   #20
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At the risk of hijacking the gentleman's thread, I do want to follow this a bit further down the rabbit hole. We talking 75F ambient, or fermentation temp?

Jealous of your Consecration. It's my favorite American sour and we don't get Russian River here in MI.

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