6-way Experiment w/Brett & wild cultures, aged on
Just looking for some feedback/suggestions on an experiment I am doing:
I made a 6 gallon batch of "Mugwort anti-imperial stout", similar to a medieval English strong ale braggot. Instead of using hops, I used mugwort as the bittering herb, and a variety of other herbs and spices for flavor and aromas. Its all in this recipe: http://www.gruitale.com/rec_mugwort_stout.htm
Original Gravity was 1.096.
I fermented with the suggested WYeast Scottish Ale.
Gravity at the end of primary was 1.030.
I probably should have made a starter, but I didn't, so I had less than perfect attenuation. Still a potent brew, though.
After primary, I split it into 3 x 2gallons to do a 6 way experiment.
-Left 2 gal. as a control. This will be split into two parts. 1 gal. will be aged on oak cubes, and 1 gal. without oak.
-2 gallons inoculated with WYeast's Bret. Brux. culture. One gallon with oak and one without.
-2 gallon inoculated with WYeast's Old Ale Blend (from their current Private Collection Series) which brought the gravity down to 1.025 within a few days. The Old Ale Blend is also supposed to contain some Bret, which will of course take a while to act. Both of these gallons I will age on oak. BUT for one of the gallons I created a wild lactic starter, which I am going to pitch into it shortly.
Lactic starter consists of:
1 cup of the beer which it will infect
1 cup of boiled Mollasses water
A few drops of a commercial raw Apple Cider Vinegar
A few drops of a farmer friend's wild cider "vinegar" (a failed attempt at hard cider)
A few drops of sauerkraut brine
A large crumb of a sourdough bread
A dab of a fermented oatmeal porridge I eat for breakfest when I'm in a hurry
Right now this lactic starter has been culturing for a week, and I am going to pitch it back into the beer it will infect in a few days. I expect the aging for all of these will take around a year. Hopefully it will be ready to enjoy by the winter solstice 2009 party.
Any advice or critiques would be appreciated.