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Sour Advice

This original post edited to reflect what actually happened in the initial batch

So my friend made a 45 gallon batch to make a sour from (4 of us fermenting different ways, then a 4 gallon blend will be made after 9 months, the rest up to discresion)

Here is the 5 gallon base recipe, we ended up with 1.062

Amount Item Type % or IBU
5.30 lb Vienna Malt (3.5 SRM) Grain 44.65 %
2.50 lb Pilsner (2 Row) UK (1.0 SRM) Grain 21.06 %
2.10 lb Wheat (Raw) (3.0 SRM) Grain 17.69 %
0.95 lb Aromatic Malt (26.0 SRM) Grain 8.00 %
0.75 lb Caravienne Malt (22.0 SRM) Grain 6.32 %
0.27 lb Special B Malt (180.0 SRM) Grain 2.27 %
1 Pkgs American Ale (Wyeast Labs #1056) Yeast-Ale

AFTER 14 DAYS I ADDED:
8.00 oz Blueberries (Frozen) (Secondary 5.0 days) Misc
24.00 oz Blackberry,Strawberry,Raspberry mix (Secondary 5.0 min) Misc

Racked off that and added:

I was given (a couple are out of date by a couple of months) all these vials of bugs.

1 Pkgs Brettanomyces Bruxellensis (White Labs #WLP650) [Add to Secondary] Yeast-Ale
1 Pkgs Brettanomyces Claussenii (White Labs #WLP645) [Add to Secondary] Yeast-Ale
1 Pkgs Lactobacillus Bacteria (White Labs #WLP677) [Add to Secondary] Yeast-Ale

(keep in mind I have NEVER made a sour)

Your making a sour…your talking close to a year process or more, maybe less but not by much.
Your fruit character will mostly be gone by the time this is ready, and that is not much fruit at all.

4oz of heavy toast is a ton of oak for 5g, even boiling for a while to get rid of tannin it is a lot of oak.
You can add that yeast, kind of overkill using it all on 5g. You might want to get some pedio in there to.

My first thought is that this beer will be very high in alcohol. 1.062 to start, added fruit sugar, plus will probably finish around 1.000. Yikes! Not for me, but you might love it. 9 months to finish might be optimistic as well.

THat only 2lbs of fruit, not much for 5g, that’s usually around the amount of fruit for 1 or 2 gallons. It will not be that high alcohol could be anywhere from 6.5-8.5% although it may be high enough to make souring more difficult once you get above 8% some bugs may not work well.

I do not expect much more than souring from the yeast mix since fermentation is already pretty much done.

I already talked to a couple of sour brewers in my club and their recommendation is no oak at all or maybe 1 oz in the last couple of months.

As for the fruit, I am going for subtle. The beer was so far done that it really didn’t ferment much more after adding it, so it probably added more color than anything, especially after souring is finished.

A strong beer is not a problem for me, I am just working with what I was given for experimentation.

Pedio? I must investigate

Remember I know NOTHING about sours

[quote=“candleman”]I do not expect much more than souring from the yeast mix since fermentation is already pretty much done.

I already talked to a couple of sour brewers in my club and their recommendation is no oak at all or maybe 1 oz in the last couple of months.

As for the fruit, I am going for subtle. The beer was so far done that it really didn’t ferment much more after adding it, so it probably added more color than anything, especially after souring is finished.

A strong beer is not a problem for me, I am just working with what I was given for experimentation.

Pedio? I must investigate

Remember I know NOTHING about sours[/quote]

Once you get high alch in sours it will be hard to sour certain bugs stop working around 8%.
For fruit you won’t really have much character left fruiting is usually done at the end.
Just because regular sach fermentation is done doesnt mean it is done for the brett and bugs, this will slwoly continue to ferment for a long period

[quote=“candleman”]This original post edited to reflect what actually happened in the initial batch

So my friend made a 45 gallon batch to make a sour from (4 of us fermenting different ways, then a 4 gallon blend will be made after 9 months, the rest up to discresion)

Here is the 5 gallon base recipe, we ended up with 1.062

Amount Item Type % or IBU
5.30 lb Vienna Malt (3.5 SRM) Grain 44.65 %
2.50 lb Pilsner (2 Row) UK (1.0 SRM) Grain 21.06 %
2.10 lb Wheat (Raw) (3.0 SRM) Grain 17.69 %
0.95 lb Aromatic Malt (26.0 SRM) Grain 8.00 %
0.75 lb Caravienne Malt (22.0 SRM) Grain 6.32 %
0.27 lb Special B Malt (180.0 SRM) Grain 2.27 %
1 Pkgs American Ale (Wyeast Labs #1056) Yeast-Ale

AFTER 14 DAYS I ADDED:
8.00 oz Blueberries (Frozen) (Secondary 5.0 days) Misc
24.00 oz Blackberry,Strawberry,Raspberry mix (Secondary 5.0 min) Misc

Racked off that and added:

I was given (a couple are out of date by a couple of months) all these vials of bugs.

1 Pkgs Brettanomyces Bruxellensis (White Labs #WLP650) [Add to Secondary] Yeast-Ale
1 Pkgs Brettanomyces Claussenii (White Labs #WLP645) [Add to Secondary] Yeast-Ale
1 Pkgs Lactobacillus Bacteria (White Labs #WLP677) [Add to Secondary] Yeast-Ale

(keep in mind I have NEVER made a sour)[/quote]

So here we are all these months later. The beer was rather mild and a little funky.

What has happened to this beer since then is that last week I added:
1.5 lbs tree ripened organic guava
1 tbsp citric acid
1/2 tsp Pectic Enzyme

It has come back to life with the added sugars from the guava and has been chugging away for 5 days.

If its not sour you might trry adding the dregs from a bottle or two of a good lambic or kriek like Drei Fontanein or Cantillon. This will give yuo a good dose of bacteria to sour that baby up.

[quote=“candleman”][quote=“candleman”]This original post edited to reflect what actually happened in the initial batch

So my friend made a 45 gallon batch to make a sour from (4 of us fermenting different ways, then a 4 gallon blend will be made after 9 months, the rest up to discresion)

Here is the 5 gallon base recipe, we ended up with 1.062

Amount Item Type % or IBU
5.30 lb Vienna Malt (3.5 SRM) Grain 44.65 %
2.50 lb Pilsner (2 Row) UK (1.0 SRM) Grain 21.06 %
2.10 lb Wheat (Raw) (3.0 SRM) Grain 17.69 %
0.95 lb Aromatic Malt (26.0 SRM) Grain 8.00 %
0.75 lb Caravienne Malt (22.0 SRM) Grain 6.32 %
0.27 lb Special B Malt (180.0 SRM) Grain 2.27 %
1 Pkgs American Ale (Wyeast Labs #1056) Yeast-Ale

AFTER 14 DAYS I ADDED:
8.00 oz Blueberries (Frozen) (Secondary 5.0 days) Misc
24.00 oz Blackberry,Strawberry,Raspberry mix (Secondary 5.0 min) Misc

Racked off that and added:

I was given (a couple are out of date by a couple of months) all these vials of bugs.

1 Pkgs Brettanomyces Bruxellensis (White Labs #WLP650) [Add to Secondary] Yeast-Ale
1 Pkgs Brettanomyces Claussenii (White Labs #WLP645) [Add to Secondary] Yeast-Ale
1 Pkgs Lactobacillus Bacteria (White Labs #WLP677) [Add to Secondary] Yeast-Ale

(keep in mind I have NEVER made a sour)[/quote]

So here we are all these months later. The beer was rather mild and a little funky.

What has happened to this beer since then is that last week I added:
1.5 lbs tree ripened organic guava
1 tbsp citric acid
1/2 tsp Pectic Enzyme

It has come back to life with the added sugars from the guava and has been chugging away for 5 days.[/quote]

you have mostly brett which is not sour, and one pack of lacto, you may never get sourness out of it, unless you add some more bugs/dregs and if there is enough sugars left for them to eat

I haven’t used storebought bacteria (other than in the lambic blends), but my experience is that a nice aged sour lambic/kriek/gueuze is a great source of bacteria. My hypothesis is that the bacteria survive better than the Brett yeast.

there is just as much brett alive in those

Maybe so but I’ve made small batches with just dregs and they come out super sour, so I concluded that the ratio of bacteria to the wild yeast was higher than the lambic blend and certainly more than the Roseleare. My batch that was from Drie Fontanien would take enamel off your teeth.

there are countless things that could come into play with that, brett is funky not sour for the most part…certain strains can have some sourness

This is definitely from a generous lactobacillus activity. And I’ve done it a few times now with very similar results.

I have had a lot of beers where people say this is so sour and it is an acetic bomb from to much oxygen, which is very easy to do.

I agree with what grainbelt says. Brett is funky not sour. I made some of those acetobacter bombs, but they came out great when I blended them with fresh brown ale and some brown ale that I aged on French oak chips for a couple of months. I was trying to make a sour red ale and it took a couple of years before the final blend was ready to drink. I got acetobacter by aging in a corny keg with the pressure relief valve up for several months, and also by aging in a carboy with plastic wrap over the top. If you are trying to make a Lambic, you can skip the oak. The whole process was fun and I learned a lot about tasting and blending. I got a lot of respect from fellow brewers once they tasted the final beer, but it was also frustrating and I got a lot of funny faces from friends that tasted the early beers that were unblended. These days, I just buy Rodenbach Grand Cru. Thank goodness it is now available in Texas.

I am not saying you want acetic acid. To many homebrewed I try are acetic bombs. Not good

I may give that a try :cheers:

Minimizing oxygen reduces acetobacter activity. A good healthy pellicle helps, and a full carboy.

No pellicle is even better. A pellicle forms because of oxygen.

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