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I just really like the work levifunk is doing!

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Author Replies
tankdeer
02/03/09 01:13 AM  
Re: Ambient Ferment
Just took a sample for you. Down to 1.012 from 1.042. It's still bubbling away slowly though. The aroma is very intense with apple like esters. Not like acetalaldehyde per se, but it really smells like it's got apple juice in it. The taste is somewhat disappointing in that it is very bland. Still has that same apple ester, but very mild in contrast with the aroma. Almost like a glass of water with a shot of apple juice in it. :)

Well, it's just barely over a month old, so it's got plenty of time. Hopefully it'll get some funk into it. I've still got it sitting the in the plastic bucket it was inoculated in. Figured I'd give it a few months in plastic to give it some O2 then transfer to glass for the duration. We'll see how that goes.

Arutha
02/03/09 09:22 AM  
Re: Ambient Ferment
I checked mine two weeks ago. In 4 months it has gone from 1.048 to 1.015 in a plastic bucket. Taste was also disappointing but at least it wasn't bad. Transferred it to a carboy and added a small starter that used dregs from a homebrew that used Rosealare and Cantillion Gueuze. I am impatient, figured it wasn't awful so might as well help it along the path I want. Should still give it some "house" character.
tankdeer
02/03/09 11:20 AM  
Re: Ambient Ferment
I had thought of giving mine a little push with some additional souring bugs. But I figured I'd give it a few months first and see if I like the direction it's headed. If it's still bland, I've got plenty of bugs to pitch.
Baums
02/03/09 01:09 PM  
Re: Ambient Ferment
Interesting--the one ambient ferment I've done was almost exactly like apple cider.
WitSok
02/03/09 09:52 PM  
Re: Ambient Ferment
Interesting updates. I suspect mine will be less funky because I took the starter approach. Some of the early bugs may not have serviced the two month starter period. I'll be sure to post updates as they become available.
WitSok
11/29/09 05:04 PM  
Re: Ambient Ferment
Got around to bottling today and was pleasantly surprised. The wild yeast really worked down the sugars. The OG was 1.053 and the final gravity was 1.002. The nose has hints of peaches with a clean lemony note. There is a cedery piney character that seems more alcohol related than hop derived. Very pleasant drinking. I did add a bottling yeast S-04 for the compact lees.
MarkO
12/01/09 09:01 PM  
Re: Ambient Ferment
I'm glad to hear you have had some success with that attempt. I have yet to try one this year, but plan tentatively to try to brew one in the next week or so.

I have done two or three a year since 2004, and they have started to change in character. The most significant change is that I now can basically count on a pediococcus presence (or at least something that acts very much like it in warm weather), which I can't really account for, since I am not pitching anything.

An interesting aside, regarding your question last year about how long activity takes: I started an ambient fermentation last year about this time, which started fermenting after a couple of weeks. I checked it in the spring, and it was "ziek" or slimy with pedio. Then at one point during some hot weather in August, it suddenly started a really vigorous second fermentation (bubbles and kraeuzen) that looked like I had just pitched a Wyeast package into a newly boiled wort. I have no idea what was going on there, but it lasted for a couple of weeks.

tankdeer
12/02/09 03:30 PM  
Re: Ambient Ferment
last time i checked on mine was a couple months ago and it was still very clean. i'll need to give it another taste soon.
danger
12/02/09 05:46 PM  
Re: Ambient Ferment
i ended up dumping mine. i had to go out of town for a while and didnt want to leave it. plus it had some big nearly green boogers on the surface that was gross.
Gail
12/07/09 04:29 PM  
Re: Ambient Ferment
I have two ambient backyard San Francisco batches in progress, both from cold clear nights last spring. (I did the liitle task of comparisons with Belgian climate charts, too, though here dampness is probably the big factor. I chose a night with cold, dry, high pressure.)

One batch was 5 gallons of wort left overnight outdoors. Very slow in its progress, which is no surprise considering the actual pitching rate and the glass aging. Cantillon has their walls and barrels, not just the yeast in the air, after all.

The other was 3 gal of wort innoculted with a pint of backyard-overnight organic apple juice starter, plus some commerical Brett C when it didnt seem to do much. (Somebody told me Pedio likes apple juice)

Both are younger than a year; the true ambient one has faint bretty leathery flavors, plus something that makes me think of wild spearmint plants, and something that makes me think of artificial pear flavor, as in a pear hard candy. The other is starting to get some complexity beyond mild brettiness. Neither is very sour yet; all is merely pleasant and curious.

I have a very nice backyard sourdough starter going now, making for amazing sourdough pancakes with the most yummy lacto flavors. I am tempted to try a small portion of a batch with that, too, next time I brew.

Still obviously far too new at this to give advice, but I figure sharing experiences is the most useful thing to do.

WitSok
12/22/09 05:19 PM  
Re: Ambient Ferment
I've added a blog with the first tasting "public" tasting notes for this beer. I plan to add judging notes later as I will enter the beer in a competition this spring.

http://morebeer.ning.com/profiles/blogs/ambient-spontaneous-wild-2

MarkO
05/14/10 07:48 PM  
Re: Ambient Ferment
Witsok:

did you ever enter this in a competition?

WitSok
05/14/10 09:30 PM  
Re: Ambient Ferment
Yes, I was pleasantly surprised when it took 1st place in specialty beer category. Here's my blog on the judging comments.

http://morebeer.ning.com/profiles/blogs/ambient-spontaneous-wild-3

MarkO
05/17/10 08:35 PM  
Re: Ambient Ferment
Nice documentation there, all the way around. Glad to see someone else is making Ron's old porters, too.

Interesting that you mention citrus notes in part II -- I just opened a bottle of something similar for some friends recently, who pointed out that very taste (something I myself had missed, previously).

Congrats!

WitSok
05/18/10 09:22 AM  
Re: Ambient Ferment
Thanks and Thank you for your's and Steve's contributions that really helped me make this project a success.

BTW, I really enjoyed the historic porter and IPA I made from Ron's collection.

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