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How do you ferment your sour beers?


read 2845 times • 94 replies • posted 12/10/2013 9:19:09 AM

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HornyDevil
Originally posted by SamGamgee
Originally posted by HornyDevil
Originally posted by BMan1113VR
Originally posted by HornyDevil
Originally posted by BMan1113VR
Originally posted by HornyDevil
On a sort of related subject, Iím planning on doing a big sour project that involves using spent wine and spirit barrels as primary fermenters. Anybody have experience with something like this?
only at work, not at home yet.


Any advice?

Leave some head space for primary, and at home (we do not do this at work) Iíd top up after fermentation slows. Donít worry about it staying on the lees. Also use a stainless steel nail on the head to pull samples (donít take the bung off or disturb the pellicle)


Thanks for the confirmation, man. Those were all things that I had planned on doing.


While Iíve never done sour barrel fermentation, only clean ale, I would add that you will probably want a blowoff for primary, which can be a 1/2in tube into a bung with the same sized hole, then just put the end in a bucket next to the barrel. We do barrel fermentation with a moderate top-cropper and see large amounts of krausen out of the blowoffs in most cases. If you just put an airlock on top, youíd get a world of mess.


Thanks! Was definitely going to do that as well after I looked at the Firestone Walker Union System.
12/12/2013 10:34:38 AM

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premium
CLevar 375:10
Just stepped up some sour bug blends, and Iím concerned that there might be L. brevis present.

Iíd really like to brew beer with this, so Iím not really sure what to do.

Please advise.
12/12/2013 3:20:24 PM

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traPISSED 101:
Originally posted by SamGamgee
Originally posted by HornyDevil
Originally posted by BMan1113VR
Originally posted by HornyDevil
Originally posted by BMan1113VR
Originally posted by HornyDevil
On a sort of related subject, Iím planning on doing a big sour project that involves using spent wine and spirit barrels as primary fermenters. Anybody have experience with something like this?
only at work, not at home yet.


Any advice?

Leave some head space for primary, and at home (we do not do this at work) Iíd top up after fermentation slows. Donít worry about it staying on the lees. Also use a stainless steel nail on the head to pull samples (donít take the bung off or disturb the pellicle)


Thanks for the confirmation, man. Those were all things that I had planned on doing.


While Iíve never done sour barrel fermentation, only clean ale, I would add that you will probably want a blowoff for primary, which can be a 1/2in tube into a bung with the same sized hole, then just put the end in a bucket next to the barrel. We do barrel fermentation with a moderate top-cropper and see large amounts of krausen out of the blowoffs in most cases. If you just put an airlock on top, youíd get a world of mess.


Agreed! I did a secondary fermentation of a 10 month old lambic in a Bordeaux barrel with a lot of fruit (new sugars) and I had to remove the bung completely for a few hours. It was a very violent fermentation.
12/12/2013 4:50:33 PM

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SamGamgee 2452:182
Originally posted by traPISSED
Originally posted by SamGamgee
Originally posted by HornyDevil
Originally posted by BMan1113VR
Originally posted by HornyDevil
Originally posted by BMan1113VR
Originally posted by HornyDevil
On a sort of related subject, Iím planning on doing a big sour project that involves using spent wine and spirit barrels as primary fermenters. Anybody have experience with something like this?
only at work, not at home yet.


Any advice?

Leave some head space for primary, and at home (we do not do this at work) Iíd top up after fermentation slows. Donít worry about it staying on the lees. Also use a stainless steel nail on the head to pull samples (donít take the bung off or disturb the pellicle)


Thanks for the confirmation, man. Those were all things that I had planned on doing.


While Iíve never done sour barrel fermentation, only clean ale, I would add that you will probably want a blowoff for primary, which can be a 1/2in tube into a bung with the same sized hole, then just put the end in a bucket next to the barrel. We do barrel fermentation with a moderate top-cropper and see large amounts of krausen out of the blowoffs in most cases. If you just put an airlock on top, youíd get a world of mess.


Agreed! I did a secondary fermentation of a 10 month old lambic in a Bordeaux barrel with a lot of fruit (new sugars) and I had to remove the bung completely for a few hours. It was a very violent fermentation.


Weíve had blowoffs/bungs come out and foam flooding out the tops of barrels before. Definitely more stressful when making and ale than a lambic, though if you have enough coming out of the barrel it should be fine if you catch it before too long.

Donít many lambic brewers do their secondary fruit fermentation in stainless after a primary barrel fermentation? I always thought it made more sense to do it this way, as getting fruit out of barrels sounds like a pain. Plenty of american brewers do it right in the barrel though.
12/13/2013 12:52:52 AM

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