Ok in a Lambic, what is the dominant factor that prevents Acetobacter from converting all of the alcohol? I am seriously interested in the process (yes I know all the nay-say arguments...but I am a pioneer dangit! ) and want to learn more. I have been reading lots of articles but don't understand what is the mechanism that is the system of checks and balances for this bacteria.
Event Horizon ~ A tribute to the miracle of fermentation.
Brew what you like. Do this, and you will find your inner brewer.
In a lambic the dominant organisms are the lacto, bret, and pedio bugs. Acetobacter should be a very minor player if it is even in there at all. I do have a lambic brewing myself. The only bug I am afraid of getting into the rest of the brewery is literally a bug.....the common fruit fly, the most notorious carrier of acetobacter. I certainly don't want 50 or 60 gallons of vinegar. In a lambic, I would guess that the other organisms have created an inhospitable environment, but I am not sure what that condition would be.
I believe they keep it at bay with brett yeasts and various other types that either form pellicals themselves or help in the formation and maintance of brett's. The pellical prevents acetobacter from having the necessary oxygen it needs.
The pellical will stay on top of the beer for years as long as its not molested.