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Old 06-25-2012, 07:25 AM   #11
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Or pitch the Brett vial because you have a small window to brew, then build up a starter over a week etc of it from another vial. Problem solved. You might even stumble into a best practice way of doing it.


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Old 06-25-2012, 02:08 PM   #12
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First, a 100% brett beer will be a lot cleaner than you think - the characteristic brett flavors will a lot more prominent if you pitch the brett with or after the sacc strain. Unfortunately, it will take a while for these flavors to develop. A Boulevard brewer said at around 8 months their Saison Brett hits its stride (they pitch it at bottling, and it's the brett brux strain from what I've read). Also, if you are going brett 100%, your starter/pitching rate needs to be about 4 times the size of a sacc strain's...this could take a while to build up.

Honestly, when I made my first 100% brett beer I was underwhelmed, it came out pretty darn clean, and even a year+ later, nothing much has changed. So I would agree with Reverse, pitch the brett at or after primary fermentation with the sacc strain.


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Old 06-25-2012, 02:27 PM   #13
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Quote:
Originally Posted by skibb View Post
First, a 100% brett beer will be a lot cleaner than you think - the characteristic brett flavors will a lot more prominent if you pitch the brett with or after the sacc strain. Unfortunately, it will take a while for these flavors to develop. A Boulevard brewer said at around 8 months their Saison Brett hits its stride (they pitch it at bottling, and it's the brett brux strain from what I've read). Also, if you are going brett 100%, your starter/pitching rate needs to be about 4 times the size of a sacc strain's...this could take a while to build up.

Honestly, when I made my first 100% brett beer I was underwhelmed, it came out pretty darn clean, and even a year+ later, nothing much has changed. So I would agree with Reverse, pitch the brett at or after primary fermentation with the sacc strain.
It seems you need to ferment at higher temperatures (depending on the strain) to get more fruity flavors out of the yeast but at lower temperatures it is surprisingly clean.
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Old 06-25-2012, 07:43 PM   #14
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Quote:
Originally Posted by skibb
First, a 100% brett beer will be a lot cleaner than you think - the characteristic brett flavors will a lot more prominent if you pitch the brett with or after the sacc strain. Unfortunately, it will take a while for these flavors to develop. A Boulevard brewer said at around 8 months their Saison Brett hits its stride (they pitch it at bottling, and it's the brett brux strain from what I've read). Also, if you are going brett 100%, your starter/pitching rate needs to be about 4 times the size of a sacc strain's...this could take a while to build up.

Honestly, when I made my first 100% brett beer I was underwhelmed, it came out pretty darn clean, and even a year+ later, nothing much has changed. So I would agree with Reverse, pitch the brett at or after primary fermentation with the sacc strain.
This is actually why I am doing a 100% Brett fermentation - I'm not looking for the stereotypical funky, barnyard etc associated with a secondary pitch of Brett. Brett as a primary strain has it's own set of flavors and aromas - passionfruit, pineapple, citrus, general tropical fruit - and this is what I am after. I am not looking to make a "Brett beer" as it is usually understood. My inspiration for this is the Crooked Stave project by Chad Yacobsen and his article in a recent Zymurgy.

I brewed the base beer last night and will likely just pitch the Brett starter this evening or tomorrow morning. This whole batch is experimental, so I might as well just go for it
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Old 06-25-2012, 07:52 PM   #15
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Quote:
It seems you need to ferment at higher temperatures (depending on the strain) to get more fruity flavors out of the yeast but at lower temperatures it is surprisingly clean.
That makes sense, just like any other yeast I suppose! Stress it out and see what it's really made of

Looking at my notes I fermented the brett in the mid 70's - It was the Brett C strain from White Labs. As far as my flavor profile: Very slight pineapple flavors along with a little cedar/woodiness. Not tart or sour at all (most brett are not on their own from what I've read) and it finished really clean and quite refreshing. Base beer was a 20 IBU weizen.

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This whole batch is experimental, so I might as well just go for it
Very true! Have fun with it, and please report your results!
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Old 06-25-2012, 11:29 PM   #16
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i brewed a 100% brett brux beer and did not make a starter, just the smack pack. it did not take months to take off, 2-3 days, and it finished within the 7-10 days clean yeasts usually do.
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Old 06-26-2012, 12:09 AM   #17
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how big of a starter did you end up doing? this strain worked very fast for me. without a stirplate, I stepped up from 0.5L (krausen in about 12 hours) to 3L over 4 days, decanted and pitched into a blond (3gal, 1.063) and it ripped thru it in 2 days
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Old 06-26-2012, 01:47 PM   #18
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So, I went ahead with this beer. Brewed a 3.75ish gallon batch of 1.045ish wort (recipe below) late Sunday night. I made a 1L starter of the wlp644 (Brettanomyces bruxellensis Trois) the day before and pitched it late last night, so it had about 2.5 days to grow. The starter really took off and acted pretty much like a normal Sacc. starter and was clearly winding down by the time I pitched it. The air lock is bubbling slowly this morning, so I am optimistic that this will work out OK. Thanks for all the advice, comments, suggestions, info...even if I went forward with what I wanted to do anyway, this forum is awesome for getting feedback and "talking through" ideas, which is what I think I needed in this case.

For those interested, here's the recipe I used. I was going for a rustic saison/farmhouse style and wanted to try something different. Please note that this is for a 3.75 gallons batch:

2.5 lbs Pilsner malt
2.5 lbs Pale ale malt
1 lbs raw unmalted spelt
1 lbs raw unmalted red wheat
0.5 lbs raw red quinoa
(cereal mash with the raw grains and 1 lb of the malted barley; added to the main mash)

hops
7 g Magnum @60 min
10 g Saaz/EKG mix (I didn't have enough Saaz) @15min
20 g NZ Motueka @1 min
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Old 06-26-2012, 02:22 PM   #19
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FWIW I brewed my first ever 100% brett saison this past weekend too. I wasn't planning on brewing but I'd asked m LHBS to order a vial of WLP644 for me. It came in on Friday so I figured I might as well brew.

I picked up one vial around noon, made a 1L starter on my stir plate late Friday afternoon, then late Sunday afternoon I pitched it into five gallons of my 1.079 saison. Started out at 72F and by Monday afternoon krausen had pushed up through the airlock. It may not be typical of other 100% brett fermentations, but in my experience WLP644 seems to be a very quick starter and a very active yeast.
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Old 06-26-2012, 03:05 PM   #20
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Quote:
Originally Posted by microbusbrewery View Post
FWIW I brewed my first ever 100% brett saison this past weekend too. I wasn't planning on brewing but I'd asked m LHBS to order a vial of WLP644 for me. It came in on Friday so I figured I might as well brew.

I picked up one vial around noon, made a 1L starter on my stir plate late Friday afternoon, then late Sunday afternoon I pitched it into five gallons of my 1.079 saison. Started out at 72F and by Monday afternoon krausen had pushed up through the airlock. It may not be typical of other 100% brett fermentations, but in my experience WLP644 seems to be a very quick starter and a very active yeast.
This meshes with what I saw in the starter and the fact that fermentation took off in under 12 hours. I'm about to head out for a few days of vacation, so I guess I'll see how things go at the end of the week.


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