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Old 02-28-2011, 12:55 PM   #1
bob3000
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Default Planning first Wild Yeast Ale

I'm relatively new to brewing and have only done extract brews so far. I've been wanting to get into partial mash and as a keen sourdough baker I would love to get into using wild yeast. So, i thought I'd kill two birds with one stone and try to plan a partial mash wild yeast ale.

Not being that familier with the different belgian and french styles, i've tried to learn what i can from reading through a few different recipes on here plugged some ingreideints into my beer software and these are the Numbers I came up with.

For 15litre batch

Pale LME 1.5kg 39.5%
Pale malt(maris otter) 1kg 26.3%
CaraMalt 500g 13.2%
Wheat Malt 500g 13.2%
Torrified Wheat 200g 5.3%
Inverted sugar(golden syrup) 100g 2.6%

Saaz 20g (6omin)
styrian Goldings 10g (20mins)
Saaz 20g (20mins)
styrian goldings 20g (5mins)

Wildyeast

Abv 6.5
EBC 19
IBU 21

I plan to do a partial stove top mash at 150 for an hour.

I kind of pulled this one out of the air. Does it sound sensible, i based the ingreadients on what i think my LHBS will have and the amounts are based on the units they sell in. Is this a good way to design a brew or is it a bit slap dash?

A lot of questions here, any help much apprecciated.



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Old 02-28-2011, 01:40 PM   #2
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How are you planning to collect the wild yeast? Spontaneous fermentation, or are you planning to isolate a wild yeast strain and pitch that?



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Old 02-28-2011, 01:42 PM   #3
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The recipe is fine, although you might want to make the recipe more basic to allow the yeast character to really shine. That way, you'll know whether you got something tasty and you can speculate on what other flavors it would work with.

When I did mine I went 60% barley, 40% wheat (it was all grain, but you can do that with extract just as easily) and only added hops for bittering.

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Old 02-28-2011, 01:48 PM   #4
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+1 to what ReverseApacheMaster said, too. My first fully-wild ale is fermenting right now, and I went with only 2-row and a little sugar (basically a Farmhouse/Saison), with only an early hop addition. Since it hasn't finished fermenting, I can't tell you whether that was a good idea, but it seems to be the standard advice on this forum.

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Old 02-28-2011, 04:40 PM   #5
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I was going to collect my own yeast by leaving out a jar or wort for two weeks as explained in other threads. Alternatively, i wonder if there is a way to use the yeast in my sourdough culture.

I also noticed most people kept their first recipes very minimal. I guess I was think of doing a slightly more flavoursome recipe becuase I wanted something tasty at the end. But I guess if saison is only pale malt and sugar, I've always enjoyed drinking it, so maybe thats the one to go for.

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Old 02-28-2011, 04:53 PM   #6
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I guess I meant more like a "traditional" farmhouse ale -- many of the commercial examples of saisons are not as simple/basic as that, so if that's what you're used to, it's probably not what you'll get from a simple beer like this.

As far as getting yeast by the open jar method, from what I understand that's much more hit-or-miss than trying to find a fruit tree (wild cherry? crab apple?) in your area that has some dried out fruit still stuck on its branches or maybe on the ground nearby. There should be some dormant yeast on its skin.

Not to say the open jar method doesn't work -- obviously it does at least sometimes -- but I've been doing a lot of research recently on collecting and isolating wild yeast, and it seems most of the microbiologist types say the "good" yeast is more easily collected from surfaces than from the air.

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Old 02-28-2011, 06:29 PM   #7
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You might better your chances by adding a wild yeast blend and then some bottle dregs of a wild beer you enjoy.

Bugs tear through sugars like there is no tomorrow so the end product character of your malts will be different than what you would otherwise expect. However, I'm still on the learning curve with 3 carboys playing with funk right now so I'm going off what I have tasted commercially and what I have read on my assessment so take it for what its worth.

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Old 02-28-2011, 06:31 PM   #8
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What about using raisins? I guess likely as not all the yeast has been washed off by manufacturer. Also I've seen another thread about using dates.

I have caught my own sourdough yeast. This was very easy to do. Is it a similair strain to what i want?

You talk about isolating yeasts, is it quite easy to catch something that will make beer ferment but to find a good tasting beer yeast much more challenging?

I would love to be somewhere I could stroll out into the country side and place jar next to a fruiting tree, but unfortunatly I live in a city in the north of England, where we are having a very grey,cold and wet winter.

I guess if all else fails I will harvest the dregs of a saison.

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Old 02-28-2011, 06:39 PM   #9
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I've never heard of using a sourdough starter for beer, but these came up when I googled it:

http://www.brewery.org/cm3/recs/04_11.html

and

http://www.hopbarley.org/content/sourdough_ale

Edit: Also, I am brewing a beer right now with a yeast strain I obtained from some dates. Here are the details: http://beer.winnphillips.com/show.cgi?bid=120

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Old 02-28-2011, 07:06 PM   #10
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looks like there is a good reason there is much written about sourdough ale, it doesn't sound very good.
Maybe the thing to do (if i can be bothered) is to experiment. Split a batch into three:
one wild, one dregs and one sourdough and compare results.



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