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-   -   Sour Beer Secondary - Carboy vs. Bucket?? (http://www.homebrewtalk.com/f127/sour-beer-secondary-carboy-vs-bucket-308844/)

angeleazy 02-29-2012 01:18 AM

Sour Beer Secondary - Carboy vs. Bucket??
So I've been wanting to take the plunge into brewing sours for some time now, and I've decided to finally start with a triple that I brewed 2 months ago. I wasn't able to get the triple to ferment any lower than 1.022 (OG 1.084), so I've decided to pitch Wyeast 5526, Brettanomyces Lambicus, add 1 lb of oak chips, and store it away in a closet for a year.

While I was at my local home brew supply store earlier purchasing a bucket, the worker there told me that I should stay away from a bucket for the secondary since oxygen can leak into the bucket. I'm sure I've heard of people storing their sours in buckets before, but now I'm second guessing.. Does anybody know if it is ideal to ferment in a bucket or a plastic carboy, or if it even matters?? If possible, please list the benefits and disadvantages of using both carboys and buckets for secondary sour fermentation.


fbold1 02-29-2012 02:09 AM

I think 6 months would be long enough for this type of beer. If I were going to age that long I would use a glass carboy.

humann_brewing 02-29-2012 02:13 AM

I am doing a sour in the bucket for the first ~100 days then moving it to kegs with oak. Those first ~100 days it will get as much o2 as it needs then I can cut it off so it doesn't build up too much off taste acids

40watt 02-29-2012 03:42 AM

There is the theory that using a bucket would mimic the oxidation one might get from aging in a barrel.

ReverseApacheMaster 02-29-2012 04:09 AM


Originally Posted by 40watt (Post 3841362)
There is the theory that using a bucket would mimic the oxidation one might get from aging in a barrel.

Except a bucket lets in more than a full size barrel would.

To the OP, you can use a bucket and produce good beer, especially with only six months of aging. The oxygen will promote acetic acid (vinegar) from both brett and any incoming acetobacter that make their way to the beer. At six months I don't think you're going to get a lot of acidity with just brett anyway so any slight acetic character might actually be beneficial for the flavor profile.

Guess42 02-29-2012 12:15 PM

No one else picking up on the pound of oak? Hoping that was a typo and you meant one ounce.

Pogopunx82 02-29-2012 12:16 PM

Currently I have a flemish red going in a bucket. It's only 3 months in, but I plan to see if aging in a bucket is really that bad. This is an interesting read.

It has a part that talks about the wine business using plastic HDPE tanks and also states that buckets are fine if you want some acetic character.

40watt 02-29-2012 12:25 PM


Originally Posted by Guess42 (Post 3841867)
No one else picking up on the pound of oak? Hoping that was a typo and you meant one ounce.

I thought that was a typo. That beer might be drinkable in 20 years.

angeleazy 02-29-2012 03:00 PM

I did purchase one pound of oak and listed the entire pound as an error, but I'll most likely use two ounces of oak per 5 gal. I did change my mind on pitching the Brett when I realized I only have about 2 1/2 gallons of the Triple left, plus it has already force carbonated (not sure if that would make a difference). Since I'd rather age larger quantities, I decided to just brew a 10 gallon batch of a Flanders Red instead, and splitting the batch into two different 6 gallon carboys. I'm thinking of soaking 2 oz of wood chips in a merlot for the secondary. Has anybody experimented with this? I'm most likely going to pitch the Wyeast 5526 in secondary, and WLP655 Belgian Sour Mix 1 in the other secondary. I'm not sure which yeast I'll use in each primary, although I'm not sure it matters too much. Any suggestions? I'll likely use Wyeast 1056 on each, unless there are any intriguiging suggestions which I am able to take from here..?

Thank you everybody for your input!

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