Angel Rice Leaven (Makgeolli)

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Dec 4, 2014
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Hi there, I'm new to this forum but have been browsing awhile. Thought I might jump right in and ask a question.

Is this stuff (ARL) supposed to start fermentation on its own? Without yeast?

I bought this rice leaven at the grocery store in hopes of making Makgeolli, but after three days in the primary no fermentation seemed to take place so I dumped it and as of right now waiting for my second batch of rice to cool before adding ARL and yeast ec 1118. When I tasted the first batch it was VERY sour and there was no taste of alcohol whatsoever; not something I'd want to drink :cross: .

Do you add water to fermenter or just rice? I added water last time.

What yeast do you recommend for taste etc?

Thanks for your time!
ARL contains a mold which breaks the rice starch down into sugar which is then fermented by yeast in the mixture. No need to add other yeast, or water. Check out the rice wine thread for more information. All you need is cooked rice and the ARL, which will slowly break down the rice and ferment simulateously. No way to see the fermentation itself aside from watching liquid form on the bottom of your vessel as the rice breaks down. Let it sit for about 3-8+ weeks and strain out the sweet rice wine liquid.
Thanks for the quick reply!

Maybe I was in a hurry only waiting three days but I thought this stuff is supposed to be ready in five days from what I have read?!

Anyway, I'll just add the ARL this time and hope for some liquid to form as you informed. I'll wait 2 weeks before tasting this time.

Any additional information is welcome!
by chance are you in korea, or are you in north america?

when i make rice wine using korean mold starters i let it sit at 35C for a few hours, room temp for about 12 hours then put it in the fridge (48F) until its done. see my thread for my guidelines, it ended up creating a very nice rice wine.
If you read the packet of ARL it says on there that it contains no yeast.

You are correct in thinking that you should see fermentation after three days if you are trying to make makkolli. I have personally made 2 successful batches of the stuff but never have I used the ARL. I have only ever used the stuff labeled "enzyme" that you get fromkorean grocery stores. Even on that packet it says to add yeast. Although I'm sure there are some wild strains mixed in I haven't had the courage to waste four cups of rice to find out.

The first batch I made I used cote blanc red star yeast. After 7 days I bottled and waited a day then refrigerated. It never carbonated but it had a very alcoholic taste. Not sweet a little dry even.
The second bAtch I used some regular bread yeast, bottled at 5 days and refrigerated at 7. A week later it was very carbonated. The flavor was much improved though. It had a cinnamon, clove, and very faint anise flavor. I quite enjoyed it. It reminded me of a saison. Next time I make this I am going to try a different yeast possibly a champagne yeast.

In both batches I added about two times the amount of water to rice.
So I had 4 cups rice dry and when I added it to the fermenter I added 8 cups of water(roughly) .

I'll document the next batch with pics if you like. And more detailed info.
So does ARL require additional yeast or not? I see two contradicting posts in this thread. I'm asking because I just purchased 10 packets of ARL online and I'd like to know if I need to hit up my LBS for some yeast or not. (I do have half a packet of Lalvin 1118 kicking around)
Yes ARL requires yeast to ferment. I just recently made some simple sake using ARL and bread yeast. I let the ARL work on the rice alone for almost 7 days and it yielded zero alcohol. So I added a packet of fleishmans yeast to see what would happen. 30 minutes later the whole batch was bubbling like crazy. View attachment ImageUploadedByHome Brew1457327028.877024.jpg notice the ingredient list on the package.
Ok thank you. All the info out there on it can get a little confusing.

I presume that it would be easier to pitch in the ARL and yeast at the same time and go from there. Less chance of introducing an infection that way too.
Indeed, pitching both the yeast and the ARL at the same time would be ideal.
The only reason I didn't this past time is because the ARL that I have is expired. I was curious to see if the enzymes would be effective, so I waited to add yeast. The outcome of my experiment was a happy accident.
Good luck! Cheers!
I’ve been making sake with ARL for about a year now, and I always let it do it’s job for about a week or so and let the sugars build up and then add just a small amount of ec-1118 yeast, come out pretty good. Some times I’ll use 71B yeast and it seem to end up with a fruity undertone.