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Corky Stewart
09/11/06 07:33 PM  
Orval dregs
I brewed a saison this summer, OG 1.090, FG 1.022 and I put one corny in the kegerator as is to lager until Christmas. The other corny got 1/2 cup corn sugar and the dregs of 2 bottles of Orval. The first 2 weeks the corny was at 80F, since then its been at 70F. My basic question is this: Assuming that the Orval dregs still contained viable yeast at what point timewise should I start tasting this beer? And what should I expect from this experiment-a great saison with some Orval character or crap? BTW the saison was great when I racked it.
Mykel Obvious
09/11/06 09:07 PM  
Re: Orval dregs
According to Brew Like A Monk, Oval is aged 3 weeks in secondary @ 59 F (when the second set of yeasts, including the Brettanomyces, have been added) then is centrifuged, re-dosed with the primary yeast, (though some of the Brett should remain according to the author)and spends 5 weeks @ 59 F in bottles before being shipped out... so 8 weeks @ 59 F should get you close to the "fresh" Orval character IF the Brett yeasts are still healthy, etc. It might take another month or so after that if things are sluggish...

As to the flavor, it's up in the air... the "secret" to Orval is the mix of yeasts "of the area" that are added in secondary... of those, supposedly only the Brett stays with the brew to the end now (they didn't centrifuge originaly)... I would suspect a nice mild to mid-range Brett character which should go nicely with the Saison yeasts... It also depends on how much of the Brettanomyces bruxellensis character you like... if you like a strong flavor (or prefer your Orval well aged) then you should let it go for 3 or 6 months... maybe try a glass every month till you get the amount of flavor you are looking for, then write that down for future reference...

I'm going to try this one myself at the beginning of the year, because my Rainy Saison (with WLP565 and WYeast 5335 Lactobacillus delbrueckii) came out very nice and will be long gone by then... I think I might try an Orval like clone in January as soon as I can get the WLP510 Bastogne Belgian Ale Yeast/ Orval yeast... Must remember to buy 2 or 3 of those when they are available :-)

Let us know how it turns out!!



09/14/06 02:08 AM  
Re: Orval dregs
Hi, about 5 years ago, I brewed an Orval clone. I used a regular yeast as the primary(belgian ale)? I used an Orval starter from five years before in the secondary. It had a subdued Brett. character which balanced nice with the peppery dry character of the primary. I have also duplicated this recipe with a fresh Brett. strain only to find that the Brett. character totally dominates the profile. mike
corky stewart
09/16/06 11:36 PM  
Re: Orval dregs
I tasted a small glass of it tonight and it still is strictly saison. I know it hasn't been long enough but curiosity got the best of me. So I'll let it sit until May and see what happens.
11/02/06 05:46 PM  
Re: Orval dregs
Seems like this thread is the best home for an Orval / B. Brux. discussion, so I'll make my plea for advice from the bug-savvy here . . .

I have a starter cultured up from the dregs of 2 bottles of Orval, which I intend to pitch into the secondary for a 5 gal clone-ish attempt. 8 oz starter perked up on the 3rd day and fermented from 1.029 - 1.007 over the next week, throwing pungent odors of everything from toilet-y funk to pineapple to sulfur and smoke along the way. Tasted it when I stepped it up and it was vaguely gueuze-y with a faint but lingering sour aftertaste.

I'm planning to pitch into the secondary this weekend, and am concerned about avoiding sourness. There's no lactic or acetic character in Orval that I've ever perceived and I'm eager to keep this brew free of such acidity. Al B, N8, other folks, what's the best protocol?

FWIW, the beer was down to 1.015 a week back and has been bubbling about once per minute since. I'm hoping it will be closer to 1.010 when I rack it, but should I be concerned if it is higer on the "more sugar, more acid" front? Also, despite the fact that Orval reportedly does secondary at 59 deg., I will be at ambient temps of 66-70. Any concern?

Your feedback is much appreciated!

11/02/06 07:51 PM  
Re: Orval dregs
Though I've never personaly done this, a well-respected-Belgian-brew-fanatic-brewer friend of mine does it rather regularly. He does just what you've stated, fermented the primary beer down, then adds the Orval dregs into a secondary. He actually just throws the dregs into the serving keg. End result; great. Good Belgian character, with Orval tanginess.

I hear alot of people saying that the starter of such-n-such yeast is all kinds of things. I've never really thought the starter is a good preview of the potential beer to be fermented. I think what you are going to do will result in a good beer. And if it isn't quite what you were after, make a change and try try again.

The beauty of homebrewing.

Al B
11/03/06 07:22 AM  
Re: Orval dregs
I believe using Bretts in the secondary lessens the acidity, since the great majority of sugars have been consumed initially by the Sacch. I recently had a taste of a cranberry brew with b. brux in the secondary for 3 months or so..........not alot of acidity (even with cranberries).

At 1015 -1010, I would think that you'll be in a good range for waht your looking for.

Al B

11/03/06 05:18 PM  
Re: Orval dregs
Thanks, folks.

I think I got a little spooked also about temperature, remembering my Fantome culturing experience from last year, which got pretty sour. That was much more sugar and much higher temps, though.

I'm glad to hear that the consensus is that temps in the high 60's and SG below 1.015 don't seem to add up to vinegar or overly-lactic results. I'm assuming I shouldn't plan to do anything in the PH department either, like adding CaCO3 . . .

Al B
11/03/06 07:53 PM  
Re: Orval dregs
I would not worry. All that talk on Bretts were as a sole fermenter, so there was alot more factors involved. Here, the brett is added later, less sugar/dextrins, under CO2,(and no lactic bacteria like in the Fantome dregs).


Al Bacteremia

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