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Split Batch Brett B & C experiment
  • BenSBenS
    Posts: 6,248
    5 weeks ago I brewed up a simple Belgian Blonde/Pale recipe to primary ferment with just white labs Brett B and Brett C split between the 10 gal batch into 2 different carboys. I have attached a couple of pictures to note a few differences that have already become very apparent.
    The brew day recipe is as follows:
    10 gal batch
    18 lb 2-row
    2 lb honey malt
    OG - 1.061
    IBU - 17 ( I forgot what hop I used) @60 min

    image
    Pic of the crazy hot break at the beginning of the boil. Other than this, there was nothing special about the brew day.

    The first shock with this beer came roughly 4 weeks after brew day when I moved my fermenters from 65F fermentation chamber to a spare bed room to warm them up a bit to help reach terminal gravity.
    image
    The beers look drastically different. This was a split batch. I am still shocked at how big of a color change has taken place simply because of the yeast strain. The light carboy is pitched with Brett C and the dark carboy in the back was pitched with Brett B.

    The final picture was taken last night.
    image
    To my surprise, a pellicle has begun to form on the Brett B beer. This tells me immediately that the white labs Brett B strain is not a pure strain. I suspected that the Brett C was not a pure strain of Brett but did not expect the B to be a mixed strain. The Brett C carboy hasn't formed any sort of pellicle yet, but did form a new krausen when put into the warmer (72F) bedroom.

    Because of the color change and pellicle on the carboy that I thought I pitched Brett B into, I am currently assuming that I mixed up the starters. Brett C is typically used in flanders style beers, which typically undergo a color change during fermentation, and the white labs Brett C is suspected of not being a pure strain. I am going to monitor the lighter colored carboy over the next week to see if a pellicle forms on that beer as well. I have also already put an airlock on the dark carboy to hopefully restrict the amount of acid formed in the beer by removing the source of oxygen. I'd love to hear comments/suggestions or questions.
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    There's no starting point. It's just a massive sea of shit to wade through until you find the occasional corn kernel. -DrCurly
  • ThymThym
    Posts: 103,758
    I was going to ask if it was possible you switched yeasts, but it looks like you are already considering that possibility.

    I'm shocked by the depth of the color change.
    The only thing between me and a train wreck is blind luck..... - Kenny
  • BenSBenS
    Posts: 6,248
    Yea, me too. I haven't pulled a sample from either yet, but they both smell like shit. That's expected from Brett though.
    There's no starting point. It's just a massive sea of shit to wade through until you find the occasional corn kernel. -DrCurly
  • FuzzyFuzzy
    Posts: 46,877
    BenS said:

    Yea, me too. I haven't pulled a sample from either yet, but they both smell like shit. That's expected from Brett though.



    the white labs strains are more prone to the 'fecal' notes than the wyeast strains.
    "Oh, you were serious? I was drunk."-C_B
  • FuzzyFuzzy
    Posts: 46,877
    either way, it should fade over time.
    "Oh, you were serious? I was drunk."-C_B
  • ThymThym
    Posts: 103,758

    BenS said:

    Yea, me too. I haven't pulled a sample from either yet, but they both smell like shit. That's expected from Brett though.



    the white labs strains are more prone to the 'fecal' notes than the wyeast strains.


    And this is why I'm not a big brett fan.
    The only thing between me and a train wreck is blind luck..... - Kenny
  • BenSBenS
    Posts: 6,248

    either way, it should fade over time.



    Yea. I've done a few batches of Brett. They have all been wyeast though. I'm not so impressed with the white labs so far.
    There's no starting point. It's just a massive sea of shit to wade through until you find the occasional corn kernel. -DrCurly
  • BenSBenS
    Posts: 6,248
    I checked the blond colored carboy tonight. It has a pellicle starting to form as well. Kinda pisses me off that I thought I bought a particular strain of yeast and get bacteria as well. I might write white labs about it
    There's no starting point. It's just a massive sea of shit to wade through until you find the occasional corn kernel. -DrCurly
  • ThymThym
    Posts: 103,758
    BenS said:

    I checked the blond colored carboy tonight. It has a pellicle starting to form as well. Kinda pisses me off that I thought I bought a particular strain of yeast and get bacteria as well. I might write white labs about it



    I would. They are pretty responsive from what i hear. Might want to ask whats up
    The only thing between me and a train wreck is blind luck..... - Kenny
  • BenSBenS
    Posts: 6,248
    Well, after talking/texting my local craft brewery/homebrew store friend, I have come to the understanding that Brett will make a pellicle when exposed to high amounts of oxygen when it is near terminal gravity. I did not know this. I still may email white labs to confirm this but it sounds plausible and since he graduated from siebel brewing, I generally trust his knowledge. I somehow doubt those germans taught him anything about Brett though.
    There's no starting point. It's just a massive sea of shit to wade through until you find the occasional corn kernel. -DrCurly
  • BenSBenS
    Posts: 6,248
    I do plan to keg these beers and flush them with CO2 later this week to stop the souring process though. The only thing that might keep me from doing this right away is that I was hoping to brew some flanders red wort to throw on a Brett blend from the cakes.
    There's no starting point. It's just a massive sea of shit to wade through until you find the occasional corn kernel. -DrCurly
  • FuzzyFuzzy
    Posts: 46,877
    BenS said:

    I have come to the understanding that Brett will make a pellicle when exposed to high amounts of oxygen



    that was my understanding as well.

    especially when using foil instead of an airlock.
    "Oh, you were serious? I was drunk."-C_B