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BPotts
06/17/08 03:40 PM  
Bug Starter - Sick?
So, I made a little starter for some buggy dregs from a bottle of cuvee de ranke, two cantillons, and as of two nights ago a home made sour beer. I let it sit outside, for a week or so, at the whim of the 90/80+ days and cool nights. I decided to check the gravity today and give it a taste - and all seems well - smelled tart, tasted tart, and the gravity of the starter has dropped about half way, but.....the starter is viscous and slimy, nothing like i've ever experienced. when pulling the hydrometer out of the liquid it pulls stringy like taking a spoon full out of a jar of really warm honey. The mouth feel was snotty and slimy and I had to spit it out - not what I was expecting. But I riiterate the taste was quite good. Is this the "sickness" that people speak of? I was hoping to add it to the secondary of a saison today but I'm thinking I might have to wait now....
tankdeer
06/17/08 03:47 PM  
Re: Bug Starter - Sick?
Yep. That is the sickness alright. From your Pedio. I would say go ahead and add it. I don't see any reason to wait it out.
BPotts
06/17/08 03:53 PM  
Re: Bug Starter - Sick?
Huh, never experienced it before. Now I understand what they mean by "ropey"! So you think it's ok anyway? I wasn't sure whether it might be better to wait till it gets better or not. Something new every time....
Ryan
06/17/08 03:57 PM  
Re: Bug Starter - Sick?
Yeah dude thats pedo.

I just bottled 5 gallons that I had infected with pedio and it was gnar gnar. After two months in the bottle it developed a pellicle (in the bottle mind you). Beware overcarbing that beer when its done. Pedio will eat for awhile.

BPotts
06/17/08 04:12 PM  
Re: Bug Starter - Sick?
I've used pedio in several beers and have never gotten this before.... so, I don't know why it has occured here and not before. Also, about the over carbing - I've had a couple of beers that formed pellicles in the bottle, after having a pretty stable gravity, and they have not over carbonated at all. One is a year old which I tasted the other day, the home brew that I added to this starter (fantome bugs), and it was still under carbed. I did as you suggest, and under primed, and it really hasn't carbed anymore since it did initially... I did the same for a year old oud kriek and same result - roughly 6 months in the bottle (and a pellicle formed) and still under carbonated. Both beers are perfectly clear now as well, all yeast has dropped out. I think the pellicles form mainly from the little bit of 02 that inherently gets in during bottling. I'm finding out now that 02 definitly promotes pellicle growth.
Ryan
06/17/08 04:56 PM  
Re: Bug Starter - Sick?
Pedio doesn't produce CO2 but Bretts can eat the slime that the pedio leaves behind. So if Pedio keeps metabolizing and producing slime (which is really carbos and some acids I think) then Brett will eat that stuff. I guess I was supposing that this would generate CO2 and lead to carbonation indirectly but I could definitely be wrong here....

anyone else chime in?

BPotts
06/17/08 05:08 PM  
Re: Bug Starter - Sick?
You could very well be right....the beers I mention certainly did not get sick, or at least they weren't when I bottled, and haven't gotten slimy since. So, it's entirely possible that if were to add this starter to the secondary and bottle within a month or two it could be bad, but I don't mind sitting on it for a bit.
BPotts
06/17/08 05:10 PM  
Re: Bug Starter - Sick?
I wasn't adding it for bottling - just in case that's what it sounded like.
Ryan
06/17/08 08:15 PM  
Re: Bug Starter - Sick?
That pedio beer that I have in the bottle (with a pellicle) still isn't healthy yet, but I can let you know what happens downs the road if it would help. I popped one open today just to see where it was. The sickness is not nearly as bad and the pellicle seems to have dissipated, but its still viscous and undrinkable (though I humbly submit that it tastes really quite good and is starting to sour up quite a bit too).
MarkO
06/17/08 08:26 PM  
Re: Bug Starter - Sick?
You folks must be broiling, I usually don't see the "ziekelijkheid" until the end of July or early August.

BPotts
06/17/08 08:30 PM  
Re: Bug Starter - Sick?
It sat out in the shade over several 90+ days so it definitly got up there... Will the sickness take over the whole 5.5 gal batch of beer if I add it in the secondary? The sarter is a half gal of slime.
BPotts
06/17/08 08:36 PM  
Re: Bug Starter - Sick?
several days at 90+ degrees that is.
BPotts
06/17/08 08:39 PM  
Re: Bug Starter - Sick?
Ryan - how long has that beer been in the bottle?
Ryan
06/18/08 07:04 AM  
Re: Bug Starter - Sick?
Hey Ben

I bottled on April 8 (a little over 2 months ago). I'm guessing another four months and the pedio will be cleared up.

Yes the whole beer will likely get ropey after you add the started but if you'd like to try for a nice soft acidity, then you should just give it a shot. Didn't someone say that if you want to get good at brewing wild beers you HAVE to be prepared to dump some stuff?

BPotts
06/18/08 08:14 AM  
Re: Bug Starter - Sick?
Well, I'd hate to dump an otherwise perfectly good saison just from adding some stuff I decided to grow up on a whim.... I have other things that I could sour it with I just thought it would be interesting to try. But, sickness clears up from what I've read, doesn't it? I also think I remember someone writing here that Tomme told them a "beer that gets sick usually turns out very good in the end..." I think, or something to that effect. With out a dumper to date I'm trying to avoid that!

Ryan
06/18/08 08:36 AM  
Re: Bug Starter - Sick?
Oh I didn't mean anticipate dumping it. Yes the sickness will clear up after about 6 months. "Sick" is just a metaphor. It should be anticipated with pedio and it is not indicative of ANY problem whatsoever. Its the way it works its thing.

I'd go for it and then just make it a waiting game. Like i said, the bottle I openend yesterday is still sick but starting to clear and it tastes great (even if it feels disgusting). TIme will tell, but I'm excited about this one.

BPotts
06/18/08 08:42 AM  
Re: Bug Starter - Sick?
I guess I'll add and see what happens. A new experience in bug brewing for me. Now I'm just curious as to why this happened in this starter and not any other time I've used pedio - what conditions promoted the "sickness" of the starter and which prevented it in the other beers. Maybe the kind of pedio - commercial compared to wild? Who knows...
Baums
06/18/08 10:56 AM  
Re: Bug Starter - Sick?
What makes ropiness happen sometimes and not others? There are papers and a chapter in the Martens thesis about this. I don't think the research was able to come up with the whole story, but I do recall there was some pedio strain dependence. Some strains just didn't make ropes.

BPotts
06/18/08 11:00 AM  
Re: Bug Starter - Sick?
Makes sense to me....just looking at the Wyeast website, and they still have two listings for Pedio, one cervisae and one not. The "not" contains in the descriptor the possibility of ropiness but the cervisae has no mention.
MarkO
06/20/08 05:36 PM  
Re: Bug Starter - Sick?
It looks like I was wrong in my understanding of the temps involved -- I peeked into a barrel last night and saw a covering of ropy slime on a pLambic, and I am sure it has not gone above 75 degrees F. I have never seen it before, but probably have not looked into a barrel at the right time.
BPotts
06/20/08 05:58 PM  
Re: Bug Starter - Sick?
This wasn't just a layer....the whole thing has turned into a sludge...
Al B
06/21/08 08:57 AM  
Re: Bug Starter - Sick?
Baums - yes, strain dependent under P. damnosus/cerevisae. As Ryan mentions - the slime is polysaccharides and some fatty acids. The slime is mostly likely capsules that surround the cells. No diacetyl? Definately add brett if there isn't already in there.

I've isolated a Pedio from the Rodenbach foederbier. It too is a snotball - a buttery snotball in a test tube.

BPotts
06/21/08 10:01 AM  
Re: Bug Starter - Sick?
No, I did not taste or smell diacetyl, but I only took a small quick sip to taste, the mouth feel was just too gross. I'm assuming there are some bretts from at least the cantillons and the fantome dreg homebrew. I don't know about the cuvee but I assumed there would most likely be some viable brett in there too...

You think I should buy a tube or pack of something and add it?

MarkO
06/21/08 08:30 PM  
Re: Bug Starter - Sick?
Is someone in North America likely to get a pediococcus "infection" in a spontaneously fermented beer? Mine is in a barrel which, according to my spotty records and spottier memory, I have used exclusively for spontaneous fermentations (no dregs from the pros, no lab-purified "wild" blends).

This barrel is holding its second wort, and I, like BPotts, have never seen the storied ropiness before -- but I do use way more carboys for ambient fermentations than barrels.

The snotball does smell good -- don't really feel like tasting it at the moment.

BPotts
06/22/08 06:35 PM  
Re: Bug Starter - Sick?
I decided to just go ahead and add the starter to the saison today, along with an oz of organic belgian saaz hops.... Interestingly enough the starter was already beginning to lose its viscosity, and man was it tasting tart. I'm pretty confident the cantillon bugs are the culprits, very citric acidy classic cantillon geuze-like taste, maybe even more tart. I'm excited about this one....
BPotts
07/04/08 04:50 PM  
Re: Bug Starter - Sick?
Quick update - the beer that this was added to did not get snotty, at all. It's quite wonderful though still a tad young. It took the grav down to 1.003 so far, and probably still going. Check the roselare saison thread for a description of the beer.
Ryan
07/05/08 03:26 AM  
Re: Bug Starter - Sick?
I bet you're right. My snot ball also had dregs from Cantillon (rose de gambrinus). I'm out of the country for now, but when I get back I'll update you on my bottled snot.

MarkO
09/05/08 01:15 PM  
Re: Bug Starter - Sick?
Okay, so it turns out that I had no idea what "ropiness" actually refers to, until yesterday.

I have always assumed the term was for "ropy" strands of stuff floating on top. But yesterday I thieved a sample of an ambient fermentation from late in the spring, and finally figured out what everyone has been talking about; the whole consistency of the liquid has changed into a sort of oily consistency, with no visible "ropes" of stuff floating on the top. So I finally am getting the "not snot" description Ben was giving.

It's more like some sort of alien substance than a bodily fluid.

 
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