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Home Brew Forums > Home Brewing Beer > Lambic & Wild Brewing > Wild Yeast Pellicle
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Old 07-11-2012, 04:02 PM   #1
bcgpete
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Default Wild Yeast Pellicle

This is my first time catching some wild yeast. A while back I took some extra wort from my sparge, put it in a mason jar, and left it outside for a few days until it started to bubble. Then I put the jar in my brew room for about 5-6 weeks, until I was ready to brew (hoping it would sour up a bit). I tasted it every now and then to make sure it didn't taste terrible. I made a starter, let it do it's thing for a few days, and pitched. Fermentation went great, racked to secondary after 2 weeks, had a good taste with a nice tart/fruitiness to it.

Now, after being in the secondary for a little over a week, I noticed a pellicle is forming. I'm fine with this, I'm just curious as to what's going on. I did a little searching about pellicles, but couldn't find much information about what causes them, or what to do with them.

Do I wait until it drops out before the beer is ready? I guess that's my main question, but any links to the science would be greatly appreciated.

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Old 07-11-2012, 04:09 PM   #2
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It's most likely from brettanomyces. I've had a pellicle on a sour I'm making for almost 6 months now. I don't know if they ever do drop. Generally, I just transfer from under them when I like the flavor.

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Old 07-11-2012, 04:09 PM   #3
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Do you bottle or Keg?

If it tastes good now and you keg, you can rack from underneath the pellicle and enjoy. The cold temps will stop the bacteria/yeast

If you bottle you have two choices, wait until the gravity is stable for several weeks time (~6-8) or you can kill the bacteria, knock down the yeast and bottle. If you go for choice two its because you like the beers flavor now and dont want it to significantly change. My method for doing this is as follows

1 - Cold crash hard, rack
2 - Fine, cold crash rack
3 - add campden, wait 24hrs
4 - add small pinch of yeast and bottle as usual

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Old 07-11-2012, 04:15 PM   #4
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Thanks for the feedback guys! I keg and bottle, but I wanted to bottle condition this one to help preserve some of the yeast characteristics. I'll just start pulling samples every weekend to see where it goes.

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