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Old 09-22-2013, 04:49 PM   #1
cervid
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Default psuedo lambic clone sour-critique it

So, I've decided to get a sour in a fermenter for my wife. Here's a Lindeman's clone recipe I found, but I want some advice on a couple aspects of it.

First, I was going to do it BIAB so as not to have as much stuff to clean up for only 6 lb's of grain. My wife is not a connoisseur, so as long as it is fruity, gets her a glow, and doesn't have a lot more horse blanket funk than Lindeman's she'll love it. On that note, I could just do it extract and not care, but I like that stuff too.. so.. BIAB, all extract (partial mash), or all grain?

Secondly, could I use a different yeast strain and not have to ferment at 50? My outside temps are getting down to that, but where I ferment in my basement will stay around 66, lower in winter if I don't run my pellet stove, but I want to get it going now..

Thirdly.. I want to make it with cherries due to our location and history here.. I know the cherries used in kriek are sour and not available here. With that being said, I live in Traverse City and I can get incredibly fresh pitted and frozen Montmorency cherries that are locally grown. I worry it might be too sour. Should I make two smaller batches, one with raspberries and mix, or just mix the fruit in the secondary. I don't care about it being a gueuze. I'm figuring going heavy to the 9lb side of the fruit and doing 5-6 raspberry, 3-4 cherry.

Here's their recipe.. I'm getting impatient.. I would be nice to pop a couple bottles for Valentine's Day.

Ingredients:

•3 lbs. pilsner malt
•2 lbs. malted wheat
•1 lb. flaked wheat
•2 lbs. unhopped light dry malt extract (DME)
•4 AAU well-aged aroma hops: such as Saaz, East Kent Goldings or Tettnang (1 oz. at 4% alpha acid)
•Belgian ale yeast slurry (White Labs WLP550 or Wyeast 1762)
•Lambic yeast or bacteria culture (recultured yeast from commercial lambic, Wyeast 3278 or both)
•6 to 9 lbs. cherries, raspberries, peaches or other fruit (picked fresh, washed, cut up and frozen until ready to use)
•1 cup unhopped light dry malt extract (DME) to prime

Step by Step:


Heat 9 quarts water to 163° F. Crush whole grains and add, with flaked wheat, to liquor. Hold mash at 152° F for 75 minutes. Runoff and sparge with 12 quarts water at 170° F. Add DME, stir well, bring to a boil. Add hops, boil 60 minutes. Remove from heat. Add to fermenter along with enough pre-boiled and chilled water to make up 5.25 gallons.

Cool to 70° F, pitch ale yeast. Ferment at 68° F for two weeks, rack onto fruit in your secondary and add lambic culture. Condition cool (50° F) for three to four weeks. Rack into third vessel to clarify at 50° F for two weeks. Prime with DME, bottle and age at least three to four weeks at 45° to 50° F. Serve at 40° F in either a heavy glass tumbler or a champagne-style flute.

All-grain option:

Replace the DME with another 1.5 lbs. each pilsner and wheat malt. Increase mash water to 13 quarts and sparge water to 16 quarts. Mash time and temperatures will be the same. Proceed as above from boiling.

All-extract option:

Omit pilsner and wheat malts. Steep flaked wheat in 3 gallons at 150° F for 30 minutes. Remove grains. Increase DME to 5.5 lbs., proceed as above from boiling.


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Old 09-22-2013, 08:35 PM   #2
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It will super attenuate and the bottles will explode.


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Old 09-22-2013, 10:50 PM   #3
cervid
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That wasn't an answer to any of my questions really.. Care to expand on that?

I got it off BYO magazine's website. I see a lot of people add champagne yeast at bottling, these guys are only talking about adding DME. 1 cup is 7.5 oz's by weight, so it doesn't seem crazy for something that is typically pretty carbonated. Not to mention DME is less fermentable than sugar and more is used when bottle conditioning with it.. I see some people calling for 3.5 volumes of CO2 for bottling these as well.

Do you mean it will explode if I use other yeasts, DME over sugar? I'm confused as I've read other people have used this and seen it linked on these forums as well. Have you made Lambic?
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Old 09-23-2013, 12:42 AM   #4
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Eight weeks and in the bottle! I would doubt it would be sour at all, especially since you don't add the bugs until week 3.

Sour bacteria continue working for up to a couple of years, and longer. The sacc yeast consumes the O2, before the Brett can get to it, so the Brett grows slowly. It takes around 8 months for the Brett yeast to maximize its population, and will continue to develop flavors for 18 months or more. The Pedio and Lacto bacteria can take up to 2 years to fully grow, and continue affecting the beer for maybe 3 years. All this time this yeast and bacteria are slowly breaking down the complex sugars. If you bottle at 8 weeks you are likely to be somewhere around 1.012, however, the bugs will keep working and will probably take it down to 1.006 or much lower over the long haul. If you bottle early, you will need to use strong bottles.

You can prime Ok with sugar, you don't need to mess with DME unless you really want to.

Generally you wait a long time before adding the fruit. If you add it early, the sacc yeast will just devour the simple sugars. If you wait a while, most of the sacc will be dead, and the bugs and brett will work on the sugars making the beer more complex. I just moved 2 brews onto fruit today. One was 8 months from initial pitch, and the other was 1 year. I'll have them on the fruit for about 8 months.

Lindemans fruit beers are sweeter than normal sours. To get something like that you would need to sweeten at the end and pasteurize part way through carbonation, or use some artificial sweetener. Most sours finish bone dry.

With cherries, you want to have the pits in with the fruit. It adds an almond flavor.

Add the bugs up front. It will get sour quicker. I usually add them a couple of days before the sacc yeast to give them a chance of increasing their population before the sacc starts creating alcohol and making the environment hostile for them.
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Old 09-23-2013, 02:29 AM   #5
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It seemed short to me too, I just figured that was in order to not let it sour as much as it might otherwise do to keep it sweeter and 'clone' the Lindeman's, which is what I googled and what she likes.

I was going to use the cork and cage bottles, I see a lot of people using those for this style. Maybe I should be thinking more along some Mead with the amount of time I have.

Seeing as you brew these a lot.. Is it worth it to mess with considering I have 5 1/2 months until I want to open the first bottle?
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Old 09-23-2013, 10:19 AM   #6
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Quote:
Originally Posted by cervid View Post
Seeing as you brew these a lot.. Is it worth it to mess with considering I have 5 1/2 months until I want to open the first bottle?
I would say almost certainly it is not worth it. In 5.5 months at best your lambic will not taste good. At worst, the bottles will be dangerous because of continued fermentation.
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Old 09-24-2013, 01:14 AM   #7
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Quote:
Originally Posted by cervid View Post
I was going to use the cork and cage bottles, I see a lot of people using those for this style. Maybe I should be thinking more along some Mead with the amount of time I have.

Seeing as you brew these a lot.. Is it worth it to mess with considering I have 5 1/2 months until I want to open the first bottle?
You could give it a go if you have the heavier bottles, but I think you will be disappointed. You will not have the fruit flavor you expect, it will be dry (versus Lindemans being sweet), probably not very sour, and you may have gushers. .... but it will be beer.

Please don't be put off making a sour. They are pretty easy to make, hard to go wrong and very rewarding; they just take a long time.

If you want something in 5 months, you could try making a Berliner. It is a low alcohol beer soured with Lactobacillus bacteria. Mine are usually in the bottle at 4 weeks and drinking at 6. The key is to sour the wort before adding any yeast.
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Old 09-24-2013, 12:08 PM   #8
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Calder View Post
You could give it a go if you have the heavier bottles, but I think you will be disappointed. You will not have the fruit flavor you expect, it will be dry (versus Lindemans being sweet), probably not very sour, and you may have gushers. .... but it will be beer.

Please don't be put off making a sour. They are pretty easy to make, hard to go wrong and very rewarding; they just take a long time.

If you want something in 5 months, you could try making a Berliner. It is a low alcohol beer soured with Lactobacillus bacteria. Mine are usually in the bottle at 4 weeks and drinking at 6. The key is to sour the wort before adding any yeast.
I would second this. Given your goals and timeline, I would recommend making a Berliner and then using syrups when consuming to give it the sweetness you're looking for.
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Old 09-24-2013, 02:39 PM   #9
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Even "young" lambic is a year old. Two years is about the average age of most lambics.
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Old 09-24-2013, 07:47 PM   #10
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Awesome. Thanks for the advice and responses. I don't mind doing things technical or time consuming, I just don't think it's worth the time and effort to half ass or cheat it.

I thought about using something post bottle opening to sweeten it, but I still wouldn't want to waste the money by opening it or bottling it early. I'd be better off buying a couple of bottles of the Lindeman's she likes at that point.

The Berliner might be cool. The whole point is to make her something cool myself and put a special bottle label on it. It's certainly more charming than buying a bottle of booze. She doesn't drink much but she thinks, well at least this hobby, is cool.


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