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Old 11-22-2009, 02:46 PM   #1
dontman
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Default Lambic blend starter question

I have a starter going that I made from the WY Lambic Blend. It has been 33 hours and I'm really seeing no sign of nothing No bubbles being released, no foam at all even after I stopper and shake it. It just looks like dirty wort.

Is this normal? or Should I be expecting the same kind of reaction I see with a normal yeast starter? Should I be able to track progress with a hydro reading?

I was planning to wait 48 hours before pitching this into my already fermenting beer but I don't want to pitch something if I don't know that it is viable. I can take a hydro reading tonight to see if there has been progress.

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Old 11-22-2009, 04:19 PM   #2
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Its better to pitch the blend as the primary yeast, it will produce a more sour/funkier beer that way

Also, Ive never made a starter with the lambic blends, you just toss them in, you probably wont see much action in them to begin with until the various bugs build up to substantial levels, and pedio/lacto dont put off a ton of CO2 like sach

Toss it in now, and add the dregs of several sour beers as soon as you can, your beer will thank you

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Old 11-22-2009, 06:35 PM   #3
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Originally Posted by ryane View Post
Also, Ive never made a starter with the lambic blends, you just toss them in, you probably wont see much action in them to begin with until the various bugs build up to substantial levels, and pedio/lacto dont put off a ton of CO2 like sach
This is what I was suspecting/hoping because I really am seeing no sign of activity. My problem with just adding is I don't know if I got a Wyeast pack that someone dropped in a pot of boiling water to sanitize. (I exaggerate for effect.) And I won't know for months that it was dead because there is other yeast added.
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Old 11-22-2009, 07:18 PM   #4
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youll know a lot quicker than that, you really need to add them now though so the bugs have access to the maltose and high amounts of nutrients, it will help them build their numbers quickly and make a larger impact on the beer

Also, youll know within weeks if its working, it will smell sour/funky, just toss them in already!!!!!!! Oh and go drink some sour beers, its sucks I know but sometimes you just gotta do things..........

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Old 11-22-2009, 08:12 PM   #5
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youll know a lot quicker than that, you really need to add them now though so the bugs have access to the maltose and high amounts of nutrients, it will help them build their numbers quickly and make a larger impact on the beer
This is why I have them in a flask. There they have 1/4 lb DME and 1/4 lb Corn sugar to munch on to build up strength and numbers. The beer in the carboy is fermented already.

I am in PA and because of this I have to buy beer by the case so it is easier said than done to "drink some sour beers". I have a bottle shop nearby that has a single type of Framboise ( not Lindeman's) for $14 for 8 oz. I've had it, okay but I doubt there are any viable bugs in it and I refuse to get jacked on the off chance that it does. It is times exactly like this that the PA liquor laws suck schweaty ballz.

If I were to spring for a mixed case (of a particular name brand, Cantillon for example) which brand would have the best examples of unpasteurized beer?
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Old 11-23-2009, 12:38 AM   #6
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Cantillon is my favorite if you haven't already sampled many of their selection, not sure if they filter or not though, its been a while since I had one.

If you're unsure of you're starter..take a hydro sample, its no different than a batch of beer. This will tell you if you're sacch. yeast strains were viable, and it should stand to reason that the brett and bacterial strains would be in the same condition as the sacch.

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Old 11-23-2009, 03:51 AM   #7
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This is why I have them in a flask. There they have 1/4 lb DME and 1/4 lb Corn sugar to munch on to build up strength and numbers. The beer in the carboy is fermented already.
This isnt the same as having them in the wort from the start, there they have access to a lot more sugar and nutrients, you really want the wild bugs to have more access to both of these than the sacch, commercial producers do not do a clean ferment then add bugs, the bugs see the wort from the beginning

Id bet that your bugs are viable, I would add them and not worry so much, either way youll find out in a couple weeks, and there isnt any real harm either way, I keep telling you to add them and wait to see if they are working, honestly theres not much else to do except measure the gravity of your starter, on a side note I wouldnt suggest using corn sugar in a starter it lacks nutrients which isnt the best to building up healty yeast/bacteria

As far as sours go, Lindemanns Cuvee Renee will add viable bugs to your brew and is a pretty good gueuze, cantillon is another great one, personally I really like Girardin or Jolly pumpkin dregs

Who makes the framboise? Id bet something in there is still viable, generally with dregs I make a ~1gal batch, add the dregs and let it do its thing for ~2-3wks, by this time anything in there will have woken up and gone to work on the wort, I then taste it to see if I like the flavor profile, if its good I add the slurry to the beer (I usually do this will several bottles and use this for the primary though)
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Old 11-23-2009, 11:29 AM   #8
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I had to make a starter from my last Lambic Blend packet because I split it across two small batches. It took 6 days to get going good. If you do foil over the flask instead of an airlock, activity may not be obvious as mine had no krausen. It was throwing off a good amount of CO2 however.

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Old 11-23-2009, 03:58 PM   #9
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Mine is showing no signs of even co2 offgassing, such as small bubbles rising through the mix when shaken. But, the amount of sediment that collects on the bottom now when I let it sit for a few minutes is noticeably more than when I started so something is happening and I am at ease.

I still haven't pitched it. I think I will add some more dme today and let it go for another 48 hours to get even more momentum for when I dose the beer.

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Old 11-23-2009, 09:53 PM   #10
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How does it smell?

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