Friday, November 11, 2011

Dreg Sour Project

As a bonus to the Sour Project #1 we are going to do a second running beer.  This beer will brewed with the second runnings from the Flanders Red Ale.  We will add DME (if needed) to achieve a 1.040 O.G.  We are hoping to get 4 gallons of wort.  The exciting part of this little side project is that we are taking the collected wort and adding it to four, one gallon glass jugs.  These will all be "Dreg" beers with yeast collected from commercial sour beers.

I have 3 of the Sour's in my fridge now.  As you can see I have the "Crem De La Crem" of Sour Beers. 

I have two Russian River bottles.  They are Temptation and Supplication.  We also have one beer from Brewery Ommegang .  It is Biere de Mars.  Danny has collected one more Russian River Soured beer that I will update when I know the name.

The gallons glass jugs are amber in color and will have an airlock on them with a little vodka in it.  Here is the breakdown of the 4 gallon jugs.  FYI:  The D and the # is for Dregs and the gallon jug number.

Jug #D1
  • Russian River Supplication:  This is a brown ale that is added into Pinot barrels.  That are inoculated with Lacto, Pedio and Brett. 
  • Sometime during the fermentation sour cherries are added.  Depending on the taste at a couple months, I will do the same. 
 Jug #D2
  • Russian River Temptation:  This is a blond ale that is aged in French Oak Wine Barrels.  This has Brettanomyces only.  
  • Depending on the taste, I will add Medium oak cubs from my Kate the Great Russian Imperial Stout.    At this point the cubes were on Bourbon for 1 month and on the beer for 4 months.  They are currently frozen.

Jug #D3
  • Brewery Ommegang:  This is a solid Brett beer.  Currently, I do not have much information on it.  I will report back.
  • This will be in the care of Danny (DeeperRootsBrewing)  When I get an update from him I will let you know.

Jug #D4
  • Oud Beersel:  All I know is that this beer was clean and great.  Very sour.  Working on a link.
  • This will be in the care of Danny (DeeperRootsBrewing)  When I get an update from him I will let you know.

These are my tracking slips that I put on every brew.  You can see how I made them here.   But any notes about the beer are added to this slip and then Beersmith. 

I will keep this updated about every month after brewday.  Of course I might have some notes after this weekend.


The dreg brew day was great.  We ended up around 1.040 OG.  I might add some sugar on mine if needed.  The Dregs were added and we are waiting for fermentation.  Today (day 2) we have activity on the airlock and a little bit of Krausening on the wort. 

Update #2

The 2 dreg beers that I have are rocking.  I have about a 1/2 of wort on the bottom of the container.  I have a thick pellical layer on both jugs.  The smell is just like the Russian River beers that the dregs came from.
I have the dregs in the fermentation chamber, it is not a final resting place for them but a great temp solution until my "Sour" area is done.

Update #3

Today I took my D1 Beer and brought it upstairs for a tasting.  The aroma was tart with a sweetness that I can not pinpoint.  Almost a spree candyness to it.  I proceeded to take the gallon jug and transfer out a small 4 oz pour for myself.

As you can see it was sightly cloudy, the color was a lot lighter than expected.  The 1st thing I noticed concerning taste was a small tartness.  Not sourness, probably do to the fact that it is so young at about 1 month.  But tart.  A building block to sour greatness.  Very much like the Russian River Supplication bottle the yeast came from.  This with a Flanders Red recipe and Russian River with a blond recipe, the 2 beers tasted like they should of had the same grain bill.  Almost to strangely in fact.  I am starting to wonder if the base recipe really matters?  I understand the hops do because of the souring proteins (lack of a better term) and the way the hops block the brett yeast.  -Remember this is not a teaching blog, at all. -  Anyways, I have great hopes for this gallon of Russian River Dregs.  I did end up bottling the most of the gallon into old Belgian bottles. Anyways here is the after picture to the left and bottom right.

It will be really interesting to see how these 6 bottles evolve over the next 6 t0 12 months.  I didn't add any bottling sugar, so they may stay flat, explode or get just right for my tastes.

That is the great thing about this Dreg Project.  It is a learning curve that it is exciting to all the people evolved.  As these 4, one gallon beers get older with time some might get blended with other beers to achieve different tastes and flavors.  Some might be left "As-is" like part of this one.  I might even have to create a timeline that shows the origin of each and how they changed and when they got blended into other beers.  I have a feeling that this might have to be split into different posts as the complexity grows, but will shall see.

Update #4

I have decided that the rest of the Supplication dregs is getting fresh Medium Toast, American oak cubes.  This will sit for about a week and then I'll add it to the Dirty Gnome Sour beer.  

Brewed 5 Months ago Flanders red base with Supplication Dregs

Update #5

3-13-12 Today I chilled one of the D1 dreg beers (supplication) and drank it.  Tastes very close to the dreg beer from Russian River.   Not as complex but great.  It goes right up my alley, more tart sour than dirty sour.  Very effervescent like a Rodenbach

With a little more time this will evolve into a great beer. 

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