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01/19/07 05:57 AM  
Nobody has tried to prepare a faro?

I'm at the third experience of a production of wild beer (don't like to use plambic word) and now i would like to try a new experience.

Yesterday evening I added a belgian candy sugar in a glass with my production. It's very hard to have a solution of sugar in the beer.

The taste is good, 100% sweetness but also 100% sourness.

The quantity of sugar was 1:10.

If somebody have some tips for me, thank you in advance.



01/19/07 09:09 AM  
Re: Faro
Faro's a tough one, at least if you look at it in a traditional sesne. Dan Shelton has written up very comprehensive pieces on faro, the short of it is that I (personally) don't think it really counts as a style so much as a dispensing approach. The deal as he explained it is that in the olden days when a batch of lambic went bad and became mostly undrinkable it was salvaged by adding candy sugar to sweeten it up to make it palatable. So the sugar was not so much a brewing adjunct as it was a cover up so a brewery could avoid revenue loss. I think if you do something to a beer for the sake of salvage that is not consistent with your initial intentions then this effort can't really be seen as making a style.

Now a days faro is looked at as a style, but in a production sense I don't think that really adds up. Lambics attenuate very well, microorganisms take no hostages. How then can you add enough candy sugar at packaging to flavor it without making bottle bombs? How did they in the olden days? They didn't, faro was always kegged and designed for immediate consumption.

As homebrewers we could do the same, make a batch of lambic and (preferably if the batch has not gone well) sweeten it and serve it quickly before the sugar can be consumed. But realistically in this day and age that would mostly be thought of as polishing a turd and we would either blend it over time to use it up or just dump it. A couple modern lambic makers offer a faro, but its hard for me to think of that as more than just regular lambic darkened a bit by sugar that has long since been consumed by beings way smaller than myself. There has to be a reason faros are hard to find.

Anyway Valter, in terms of making faro I have no tips cause I think you pretty much got it right. You added sugar just before drinking it so you got the sweet taste without the explosive uncorking. If you wanted a lot of it for a party or something you could do exactly what you did on a larger scale (like in a keg).

01/19/07 10:19 AM  
Re: Faro
Thank you.

Don't worry for bottled and corking. Yes I know that.

My target it will be a folkloristic party where the people will directly taste from the barrel(wood).

But, the hardest task will be only to have a solution, with which kind of sugars and how many sugars.

01/19/07 11:20 AM  
Re: Faro
I've read, or heard someplace that the sugar syrup that was used was made from brown sugar. Not the dark cansy syrup that is availabe, but a sugar solution from brown sugar, or something like that.

I brought a bottle of Faro back from Belgium last I was there, and it didn't hold up well in the bottle going along what Steve said. Then again, I did hold on to said bottle for about 6 months before rediscovering it in the beer cellar. It was a bit more tart then what I had fresh.

I would love to produce a faro, myself, but I don't want to intentionally screw up a lambic for it. Perhaps if I make enough batches one of them will eventually go bad. Then i can play faro-maker.

01/19/07 12:23 PM  
Re: Faro
Valter, serving it out of wood? Excellent! The good news is that testing the sugars should not be a hard task, I think you should do exactly what you did the first time, try a little in a glass. As far as what sugar to use, there are some great ones made in Belgium that have recently started making it into the US. Maybe you can get those too?

I think any issue of authenticity is moot. Since they would make the stuff to turn a bad keg drinkable there would be no historically authentic taste to target. Spoiled lambic could taste like anything, so though you could try to research what exact sugar they used to use you could not pair that with an "accurate" beer. I mean, what possible benchmark could spoiled lambic have? And if the lambic you are starting with is not spoiled then the beer you are to serve will already be very different from the historically authentic one - but in a good way! I bet todays sugars beat the ones of centuries past, I'd go for broke. You'll make a faro that would impress the heck out of Bruegel!

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