Monday, November 21, 2011

Farmer's Daughter Flanders Red and the Dregs Project

A few weeks ago, Chris from Lewy Brewing came over for an epic brew session.  Eight hours and many beers later the result was 14 gallons of wort destined to be fermented in a way that was new to both of us.  We started with a 10 gallon batch of Flanders Red (recipe here) which was split into two carboys for fermentation.  In Chris's carboy WLP001 CA Ale was added for primary fermentation and WLP655 Sour Mix 1 was added seven days later as primary fermentation began to wane.  In my carboy, US-05 and WLP655 Sour Mix 1 were added at the same time.  Our plan is to ferment each carboy for at least a year, letting the bugs in the Sour Mix slowly convert all of the residual sugars that the primary strain can't consume.  Then we plan to blend the two beers, producing something more complex and delicious than either of the individual beers on their own.  Neither Chris nor I has experience fermenting with Brettanomyces, Pediococcus, Lactobacilus and Acetobacter but we have high hopes for the result.  Ending up with something palatable and interesting would be a win for our first attempt.

Farmer's Daughter fermenting next to Gold Mountain Reserve.

In addition to the Farmer's Daughter Flanders Red, we used the third runnings from the spent grains to extract a weaker four gallons of wort.  We then added approximately two pounds of DME to raise the original gravity and did a second boil.  The chilled and filtered wort was placed into four one gallon carboys and the bottle dregs from four different sour beers were pitched directly inside after aeration, following instructions from The Mad Fermentationist.  We used the following bottles of commercial beer for our bottle dregs:

Russian River     Supplication

Russin River      Temptation

Ommegang         Biere de Mars

Oude Beersel     Oud Gueze Vieille

One gallon dregs batches right after pitching.
Two weeks into the experiment we have strong fermentation happening in both Flanders Red carboys and slow, but steady fermentation in the one gallon dregs beers.

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