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Jim Denier
03/30/06 10:41 AM  
Death to the Brett?
Hi. Need some advice. Two weeks ago I racked 15 gal of Sour Red Ale that had been snoozing in an oak barrel for 7 months (used Roeselare Blend and SG went from 1.070 to 1.007). Five gal went into a carboy as is, 5 gal onto 2 cans of Oregon Cherry, and 5 gal onto 2 cans of Oregon Raspberry. Of course, the Brett welcomed the fruity feast in grand fashion (temp holding at 66 deg F). I'd like to bottle these guys in 6-8 weeks and my question is: Do I add yeast and DME before bottling (using champagne bottles and corks)to get my 3 vol. of carbonation or whatever; or do I add potassium metabisulfite to put the Brett into eternal sleep. And if I do that, I suspect I can't then add yeast before bottling.

Appreciate your input!

Al B
03/31/06 08:02 AM  
Re: Death to the Brett?
well, I don't know if this helps........or if I'm way off...

After bottling, it should either be consumed quickly or chilled to slow down the Brett activity (they seem to take a long time to eat everything, but they will and then the bottles will gush when opening - leaving you to clean your ceiling!) Bretts will also feed on any autolyzed yeast too.

I recommend tasting the brews after awhile, the Bretts can get out of hand.

I haven't used any sulphites to control Brett, but there are wine yeasts tolerant to this treatment and should help in carbonation.

04/01/06 10:15 PM  
Re: Death to the Brett?
Take this for what it's worth (which isn't much!), but I wouldn't add the potassium metabisulfite to kill off the brett.

Maybe under prime it slightly & add fresh yeast...then monitor it on a regular basis & chill when it's where you want it (as Al said).

My experience with the Roeselare blend was that after about 10 months or so, it didn't seem to get any more sour (even after another 6 - 8 months); or to develop a more bretty character, or drop in gravity any further (going from memory only, I think in the 1.007 area as well...).

Of course, this doesn't apply to the fruit additions - with the additional fermentables, who knows what might get active? But the straight Flemish red should be fine to prime & repitch, in my limited experience...ymmv!

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