Thursday, February 9, 2012

Senne Valley Saison

The weather has been weird lately.  It's either hot and sunny with clear cloudless skies, or overcast and rainy-no in between.  When you wake up each morning, you never know if you'll need your umbrella for walking through a downpour or for shade at the beach.  I'm going to spin the wheel and make a saison and hope for more heat to assist in a hot fermentation.  I put my last saison outside, wrapped in a towel in the hot sun in July last year, and the taste did not disappoint.  For this one, I want to do something a little different.  Here's the recipe for Senne Valley Saison.

Brasserie Cantillon - Senne Valley
When I first started thinking about souring beers at home, I bought a vial of White Labs Brettanomyces Bruxellensis, figuring that I would use it to make an all Brett-fermented beer of some sort.  It's been sitting in the fridge for the past few months, waiting for some attention.  While I still think that an all Brett beer would be interesting, I plan to pitch the neglected vial into secondary when I transfer this saison off the primary yeast cake.  The Brett should impart a clear mild sour flavor that increases with age and dries the beer out nicely, which goes well with traditional saison style parameters.  I'm hoping that the combination of the Wyeast 3711 French Saison yeast and the Brett will make for a very complex and interesting result, with the 3711 enhancing the spiciness of the grains of paradise and helping some of the characteristic of the Czech Saaz shine through for a different twist.


  1. I have brewed a similar one with WL Brett C this past summer. The Brett B should give you an even bigger funk, farmhouse flavor. I would not expect much sourness especially if you are using it with 3711 because that yeast is a monster and will dry the beer on its own. You will however over time get some nice farmhouse/Brett aroma.

    Another thought with using the 3711, since it dries out the beer(at least for me - 1.000-1.002), you are actually pretty safe adding Brett right at bottling because there is not enough sugar to over attenuate. I was able to add a few different strains of Brett to different bottles, so later on I can do a side by side tasting. Just an idea. And I have some Brett strains to share.

    1. Your description above is exactly what I'm looking for: a nice dry, saison with funk but not overt sourness. Thanks for the confidence boost!

  2. I've always been a IPA guy, leaving the Saisons to the other guys. Once I discovered Brett the idea of a funky Saison makes my mouth water. I am excited to live 2 miles from you to "Oversee" the development of this beer.


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