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Old 09-22-2012, 03:42 AM   #1
Mar 2012
Fresno, CA
Posts: 31

I feel like it's cheating using Brett. It eats everything. Am I wrong. I have never used it nor made a sour, but I feel like sours are used to hide flaws in brewing. Thoughts?

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Old 09-22-2012, 03:47 AM   #2
Jul 2009
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they're actually harder to make correctly than almost any other type, and take a lot of patience. 2 years and a lot of ruined equipment to find if you've done it right? hopefully, the right flavor kicked in when it should...
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Old 09-22-2012, 03:53 AM   #3
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May 2012
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Originally Posted by ChuckD123
I feel like it's cheating using Brett. It eats everything. Am I wrong. I have never used it nor made a sour, but I feel like sours are used to hide flaws in brewing. Thoughts?
Yeah, I'm sure that's what those lambic brewers in Belgium have been doing all these years. Just covering up their crappy brewing techniques.

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Old 09-22-2012, 04:16 AM   #4
Sep 2011
Beacon, New York
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Just like any other ingredient, Brett can create great, desirable flavors, and also create some really horrid flavors when used incorrectly.

Making a good sour is incredibly complicated, usually involving complicated brewing and fermenting techniques, plus waiting a year to two years just to see if the beer came out good. Most good sours are blended, a whole other complication / technique / art which other styles don't require.

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Old 09-22-2012, 11:41 AM   #5
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Depending on the flaw it will not be hidden in a sour. I recently made a beer with purple corn and the dryness associated with the style amplified the bitter tannic sensation from a reaction with the very high level of anthocyanins in the corn.
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Old 09-22-2012, 04:01 PM   #6
Aug 2010
Philadelphia, PA
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Originally Posted by ChuckD123 View Post
I feel like it's cheating using Brett. It eats everything. Am I wrong. I have never used it nor made a sour, but I feel like sours are used to hide flaws in brewing. Thoughts?
Im sorry if I am flaming you here but have you tried many beers with Brett? I'm thinking you should do a bit of research before making a claim like this.

Brewing with Brett is not simple, nor is it to be used to "fix" a bad beer. A bad base beer with brett ends up being exactly that, a bad beer with brett.

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Old 09-22-2012, 04:43 PM   #7
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Jul 2009
Keller, Texas
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That same logic could be used to say IPAs are only hoppy to cover up brewing flaws.

Certainly some brewers think a bad batch can be rectified by adding brett or souring bacteria but most of the time an infected batch does not become better by adding brett. It usually just stays nasty. It's dishonest to dump in brett or souring bacteria to try to fix an infected or off batch and pawn it off to people as a premium sour but by the same token I think it's dishonest to take an off batch and add a bunch of dry hops so you can't notice the flaws. Homebrewers are obviously free to do what they want with their own batches but I feel differently about commercial brewers trying to charge a premium for flawed beer.

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Old 09-23-2012, 12:47 AM   #8
Mar 2010
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Garbage in = garbage out. If you start with a bad beer, you will almost always end up with a bad beer, and a lot of wasted time.

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Old 09-23-2012, 01:19 AM   #9
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Feb 2011
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Originally Posted by ChuckD123
I feel like it's cheating using Brett. It eats everything. Am I wrong. I have never used it nor made a sour, but I feel like sours are used to hide flaws in brewing. Thoughts?
Woooww my thoughts are you just insulted the living sh## out of a lot of brewers. I happen to be one of those brewers. I think the problem may be you are not familiar with what Brett is therefore I shall educate you.Brettanomyces is a non-spore forming genus of yeast in the family Saccharomycetaceae, and is often colloquially referred to as "Brett". The genus name Dekkera is used interchangeably with Brettanomyces, as it describes the teleomorph or spore forming form of the yeast. The cellular morphology of the yeast can vary from ovoid to long "sausage" shaped cells. The yeast is acidogenic, and when grown on glucose rich media produces large amounts of acetic acid. Brettanomyces is important to both the brewing and wine industries due to the sensory compounds it produces.

In the wild, Brettanomyces lives on the skins of fruit. The strain Brettanomyces claussenii was discovered at the Carlsberg brewery in 1904 by N. Hjelte Claussen, who was investigating it as a cause of spoilage in English ales. The term Brettanomyces comes from the Greek for "British fungus."

Brett is another strain of yeast similar to your run of the mill brewers yeast but Brett being a "wild" yeast is know to throw flavors such as pineapple, cherry,hay,horse,sweat,etc. notice those flavors I said ... If you brewed a crappy beer do you think a cherry horse blanket flavor is going to make it better !!!??? Comeon think before you post NO it will not taste better !! You aint hiding anything Therefore the brewer really needs to know how to blend these flavors with the malt not to mention controlling other variables such as the amount of long chain dextrins Brett likes to eat. Multiple fermentation temps for your primary yeast and your Brett strains not to mention a year to find out if you did it right.

here is another exerpt from Wikipedia:

In most beer styles Brettanomyces is viewed as a contaminant and the characteristics it imparts are considered unwelcome "off-flavours." However, in some styles, particularly certain traditional Belgian ales, it is appreciated and encouraged. Lambic and gueuze owe their unique flavour profiles to Brettanomyces, as do wild yeast saison or farmhouse styles; and it is also found in Oud Bruin and Flanders red ale.[2] Commercial examples of these styles include Liefmans Brown Ale, Rodenbach Grand Cru, and Duchesse de Bourgogne. The Orval Trappist monastery is unique in crafting the only Trappist beer with Brettanomyces characteristics. In Orval's case, the brewers add the yeast to the beer at bottling.

Several American craft breweries use Brettanomyces in their beers. This use began with a renewed interest in Belgian style ales and later formed new styles altogether (Brewers Association, 2007 Great American Beer Festival Style Guidelines, section 13a, 16). Some breweries use 100% Brettanomyces for the fermentation of some of their beers, and omit Saccharomyces from the recipe. It is common for American brewers that use Brettanomyces to also include lactic acid producing bacteria such as Lactobacillus, and Pediococcus in order to provide sourness to the beer. While Brett is sometimes pitched into the fermenter, aging in wood barrels previously infected with Brettanomyces is another method used to impart the complexity and sourness contributed by these strains of yeast. A prime example of this is Captain Lawrence Brewing Company's Rosso e Marrone, an award winning Oud Bruin aged in wine barrels harboring these yeasts. Examples of American breweries that use Brettanomyces in their beer include Ithaca Beer Company (in their Brute), Russian River Brewing Company, Deschutes Brewery, Lost Abbey, Captain Lawrence Brewing Company, New Belgium Brewing Company, Goose Island Beer Company (in their Matilda), Boulevard Brewing Company (in their Saison-Brett), Allagash Brewing Company, Brewery Ommegang (in their Ommegeddon and BiŤre de Mars), Jolly Pumpkin Artisan Ales, Victory Brewing Company (in Wild Devil), Saint Somewhere Brewing, Surly Brewing Company (in their Pentagram and Five), O'Dell Brewing (Shenanigans), Avery Brewing Company (in Depuceleuse), Perennianl Artisan Ales (in their Savant Beersel), and 4 Hands Brewing Company (in Cuvee Ange).

While most stouts achieve their sour tang through the use of acidulated malt, roasted barley, or — in the case of "milk stouts" — lactose and incipient lactic acid, some use Brettanomyces for the same purpose. Prior to 1980s-era changes in its fermentation regimen, Guinness's Foreign Extra Stout is held to have been one such.[citation needed]
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Old 09-23-2012, 01:47 AM   #10
Apr 2011
louisville, KY
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Folks are seriously responding to this. Dude wanders into the lambic land, having never made a sour, and says we're all bad brewers hiding behind bugs. Troll troll troll.

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