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Home Brew Forums > Home Brewing Beer > Lambic & Wild Brewing > My Red isn't sour
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Old 07-08-2010, 03:56 PM   #21
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Thanks. I remember reading that post, but lost the link. You don't by chance have a post with information on what each Brett and bug does to a beer do you?
Here is a post I did a couple years back on brewing with Brett (http://www.themadfermentationist.com...tanomyces.html ), but I don’t think it quite answers your question.

Brett C/A – The mildest of the bunch, fruit, leather, and light funk. Originally isolated from English stouts and stock ales. Good choice for historic English ales, 100% Brett beers (especially White Labs Brett C), and for adding a rustic character to saisons. I have yet to try Wyeast Brett C, but from what I have read it is pretty similar to White Labs C and the old Wyeast A.

Brett B (Wyeast/ White Labs) - The “classic” strain responsible for farmyard funk, leather, horse blanket etc… A classic choice for Brett “finished” beer, especially hoppier ones like Orval and Ommegeddon. It can work in a 100% Brett beer, although I have yet to try it.

Brett L (Wyeast) - Cherry with slightly aggressive funk. The cherry tends to fade with age. It also seems to make a bit of acid on its own, but not enough to make a “sour” beer. A component of a lambic, but it can do interesting things alone.

Brett L (White Labs) – I’ve yet to try this one since every time I hear about it people describe the flavor as really aggressive, smoky, funky, phenolic etc… Might work in a blend, or late in fermentation when the fermentables are mostly gone.

Lacto – Works quickly and produces a moderate amount of lactic acid, likes it hot (same bug from yogurt). Very IBU sensitive, don’t go over ~5 with the Wyeast or White Labs strain. Also the main player in sour mashes.

Pedio - Lots of lactic acid in the long term. Produces diacetyl, so generally paired with Brett for the clean-up. A classic component of most sours besides Berliner Weisse. Some strains can make your beer “sick” (viscous) when the weather gets hot, Brett will help to clear this up.

Aceto – Produces vinegar (acetic acid), but it needs oxygen. If you let oxygen into your beer aceto will be there to start consuming ethanol (naturally occurring, no need to pitch).

Hope that helps.
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Old 07-09-2010, 03:35 AM   #22
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Wow! That is super. Thank you.

The lack of interesting/correct flavors in this Flanders has made me wonder if they are worth the effort. Normally, I have good technique and good recipes (I have the awards to prove it ;-) ), but this one is beyond my ken. Hence my request for help here.

I'm going to let it sit for 6mo and then take another sample. If the gravity hasn't dropped, what would be your suggestion? And if it has dropped but there is still little sourness? If the flavor has improved then I think I'll just continue to leave it in the carboy until I feel it is ready.

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Old 07-09-2010, 01:51 PM   #23
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Wow! That is super. Thank you.

The lack of interesting/correct flavors in this Flanders has made me wonder if they are worth the effort. Normally, I have good technique and good recipes (I have the awards to prove it ;-) ), but this one is beyond my ken. Hence my request for help here.

I'm going to let it sit for 6mo and then take another sample. If the gravity hasn't dropped, what would be your suggestion? And if it has dropped but there is still little sourness? If the flavor has improved then I think I'll just continue to leave it in the carboy until I feel it is ready.
Part of the issue with doing sours at home is that you don't have the range of beers to blend to hit your final target. Since you are relying on a mixed culture the results are inherently more variable than they would be for a 100% Sacch beer which are more about wort production and repeatable fermentation schedules. Sours are more about broad concepts and having good bugs, the specifics of a recipe are much less improtant.

Some of us more addicted sour brewers keep acid beer, or funky beer, or acetic beer around for blending into a batch that is a bit lacking. Some people might argue, but I had decent results upping the sourness of one of my sours that didn't sour with some food grade 88% lactic acid.
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Old 07-09-2010, 02:01 PM   #24
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Not worth it? That's crazy talk. I guess it depends on how much you're into sours or not but I just can't justify spending the money on commercials to get my funky fix. The biggest challenge is coming up with enough aging vessels so they don't cut into your production. Just like regular drinking beers, not every batch is going to be stellar.

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Old 07-09-2010, 02:45 PM   #25
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Not worth it? That's crazy talk. I guess it depends on how much you're into sours or not but I just can't justify spending the money on commercials to get my funky fix. The biggest challenge is coming up with enough aging vessels so they don't cut into your production. Just like regular drinking beers, not every batch is going to be stellar.
Agreed, its also important to have a bunch going, that way you can look forward to the one that is almost ready rather than having to think about how long its going to be before you are drinking the one you just brewed.
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Old 07-10-2010, 02:36 AM   #26
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Originally Posted by Oldsock View Post
Some of us more addicted sour brewers keep acid beer, or funky beer, or acetic beer around for blending into a batch that is a bit lacking. Some people might argue, but I had decent results upping the sourness of one of my sours that didn't sour with some food grade 88% lactic acid.
Not trying to argue , just adding my experience with food grade lactic acid. I added some to a Kentucky Common that just didn't sour as much as I wanted. It added the sourness level I was looking for, but it felt rather one dimensional. Just sour with very little depth or character, if that makes sense. On the other hand, if you have depth of flavours already but lack the sour, it's a valid option. Oh, and make sure to use a small sample to determine how much lactic you want to add and scale up from there, it's easy to add too much if you're not careful.

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Old 07-10-2010, 06:21 AM   #27
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All good things to keep in mind. I actually just bought the ingredients to start another batch this weekend, including another Better Bottle. I think this time, I'll pitch the Roeselare straight into the primary, and skip the primary with Sacc only.

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