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Jesse Lawrence
04/30/06 09:04 AM  
pLambic and Wyeast 3278
Hello everyone. This is my first post here, but I've been reading along for quite a while. Belgian beers are my absolute favourite, so this is a great resource for me.

I'm wondering about people's success with the Wyeast Lambic Blend #3278. I've read mixed reviews here, and elsewhere. I made my first batch of pLambic around Christmas time, and it's been interesting to watch.

What I'm wondering about is the lactic bacteria in 3278. It's fairly obvious that I'm at the Brett stage of fermentation (has a pellicle), which seems a little early to me. People have noted that they're not really getting the sour flavours they were looking for. If I'm at the Brett stage already (started right after primary), I'm thinking my Pedio didn't do it's magic. Maybe this is why people aren't getting much sour?

I would really appreciate any clarification on this, and I'd love to hear of any successes with 3278. Maybe I should be doing timed additions of single cultures.

Thanks very much,

Jesse Lawrence

04/30/06 10:54 AM  
Re: pLambic and Wyeast 3278
I can't comment on the exact yeast blend Jesse but I can say I have gotten a pellicle in far less time in beers that developed sourness. Not huge sourness, but some.
Ryan Artuso
04/30/06 12:43 PM  
Re: pLambic and Wyeast 3278
Pedio and Brett work at the same time.

You should check out this resource


It is focused on Reds, but gives lots of good info on Bacteria in general. What was your recipe?

Jesse Lawrence
04/30/06 01:20 PM  
Re: pLambic and Wyeast 3278
Thanks for the encouraging info guys.

My recipe is a pretty standard lambic recipe:

60% 2-row (may try Pale Ale or Pils malt next time)

40% flaked wheat

60 grams of 10 year old Hallertau

20 litre batch

I plan to do about 60L every year, for blending pGueuze and framboise, as well as other local fruits like grapes and apples. I would like to do a kriek as well, but the local cherries won't really do the job.

04/30/06 01:24 PM  
Re: pLambic and Wyeast 3278
<< I would like to do a kriek as well, but the local cherries won't really do the job.>>

Why do you say that?

Jesse Lawrence
04/30/06 01:54 PM  
Re: pLambic and Wyeast 3278
Well Steve, all of the local cherries seem to be quite sweet, and don't really seem suitable. We've got tonnes of great fruit here in Nova Scotia, but I can't seem to find any sour cherries.
Ryan Artuso
04/30/06 01:59 PM  
Re: pLambic and Wyeast 3278
Did you perform a turbid mash?
Jesse Lawrence
04/30/06 02:30 PM  
Re: pLambic and Wyeast 3278
No, I just did a single infusion. I'm not sure I'm ready to get that authentic! It's something I'll definitely consider in the future, though.
10/15/06 07:17 PM  
Re: pLambic and Wyeast 3278
If I were going to make 15 gallons of lambic using Wyeast 3278 lambic blend, should I be doing a starter?

According to the typical 1m cells per 1P per 1ml rule, I'd need about 800 billion yeast cells for 15 gallons of 1.054 wort.

I'm glad to do a starter, but would love some feedback since bacteria and lambics are unchartered water for me.


10/16/06 11:53 AM  
Re: pLambic and Wyeast 3278
My experience with these bugs is that if you add them all at once they may compete in a way you might not want. I used the Roselare blend, gave the slurry to Al, by that time the pediocauccus was gone. It seems at least possible the same could happen by making a starter. Thank God I had Al to rebalance it for me!
10/16/06 12:51 PM  
Re: pLambic and Wyeast 3278
Steve, how do you know there was pediococcus in your Roeselare blend to begin with? Is an exact description of what's in that blend available somewhere? (I have been looking but have not found one.)

My guesses (and they are nothing more) at what the blend contains are based on the latest rather vague official description, which says in part

"Available for the months of June, July and August. Origin: Roeselare, Belgium. A blend of Saccharomyces, Brettanomyces, and Lactic Acid Bacteria ... Produces distinct pie cherry character and sourness."

The Roeselare origin suggests that maybe there is no pediococcus, since the Rodenbach strain is supposedly lactobacillus and saccharomyces only (though of course there's other stuff in the barrels). And perhaps the brettanomyces is Wyeast's "brett. lambicus", based on the "pie cherry" description that they also used to describe their b. lambicus strain.

So my guess: Roeselare is Belgian Wheat Yeast, Lactobacillus, and B. Lambicus.

Anyone have a more definitive answer?

10/16/06 12:53 PM  
Re: pLambic and Wyeast 3278
I guess I was generalizing, Lactobacillus would be the accurate one.
Al B
10/17/06 08:58 AM  
Re: pLambic and Wyeast 3278
The tuns definetaley have Pedio, and in the past, over 20 other bugs. Does the Roeselare have Pedio? Not sure - Pedio produces a good amount of diactetyl, but my palate never really detected it through the menagerie of other flavors.

The starter I would recommend for large batches would to use the Belgian wheat yeast at high population, then add you packet of Roeselare at the primary. This way the bacteria + brett won't take off faster than the Saccharomyces.

Either way, add Lacto bugs + Brett in low numbers. They will do their thing over time.

Al Bacteria

10/17/06 12:36 PM  
Re: pLambic and Wyeast 3278
A high population of Belgian wheat yeast to a straight lambic as well?

At what point in primary would you pitch the single pack of 3278, beginning.. end.. somewhere in between?


Al B
10/17/06 01:21 PM  
Re: pLambic and Wyeast 3278
I know it sounded alttle strange. But I should think at the begininng along with your starter will be fine. The key with these types of brews is aging.

The tough part is having a balance with acidity, esters, etc. Tasting these types of brews periodically - every few months is something I like to do.

I like to use high populations as a starter for brewing in general, there will be unfermented dextrins left for lambic bugs.

10/17/06 08:04 PM  
Re: pLambic and Wyeast 3278
Hope you don't mind me asking so many questions. I've brewed about 35 different styles since I started and haven't brewed the same style twice yet. I'm itching to do a lambic and flanders.

What yeast do you recommend for the Belgian Wheat yeast? Searching, I found a Brewtek CL-900 Belgian Wheat and Yeast Lab W52 Belgian Wheat, but I don't have experience with either Brewtek or Yeast Lab (I've only used White Labs and Wyeast so far).

Al B
10/18/06 07:34 AM  
Re: pLambic and Wyeast 3278
You know, for these type of beers, a primary yeast is not really critical in my opinion. Most flavors and aromas come from lactic bacteria + Brettanomyces and oak too - if used. In fact, I used in my Cherry Flanders red:

Primary - WY Belg. wheat

WY Roeselare yeast (Saccharomyces only)

dried flor sherry yeast

Secondary - Roeselare blend, Brett. clausenii, L. delbrueckii, other recultured Lactobacilli from various bottles

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