Newbie Sour Obsessed
I just wanted to introduce myself. I have read basically the entire forum in the past couple days, and have learned a ton. I have read Sour Brews and have been brewing for a while. I'm absorbing a lot of info and trying to make a long term plan for this sour stuff. FWIW I'm a chemist but not a biologist and I like to write long posts!
I made my first pLambic at the end of February, it's chugging along. If you want to see the details it's here:
Basically slightly limited ambient exposure overnight and then hedged with a packet of WY3278 over 10G and a large quantity of my dregs blend.
Anyhow of course I still have questions. My main concern right now is how to keep a continual "house blend" of bugs without keeping tons of slants and stepping up to brew each time. Right now I have a "bug circus" where I put all my dregs of commercial Lambics. I have a medium of beer, oak cubes, fresh wort in there. From what I understand the populations will shift and pedio will start to dominate, correct? Depending on how much oxygen is involved? Anyhow dominant bugs will eat passive bugs and things will change, populations will die. I sometimes go to great lengths to obtain some of these rare sours and I want to preserve the diversity. Some evolution is fine but in 5 years I don't want to have a jar of pedio and think "I should have done X so many years ago"..
I have kept slants in the past to save money on yeast but I never tried to separate strains or looked at them in a microscope. Is there another way? I will probably want to culture more pure things like Orval and The Dissident separately but I also want a diverse house blend that I can add for complexity and deliciousness. I wish survival of the fittest was also survival of the tastiest but that's not always the case is it? Al B seems to have the best system but I want to avoid all that work! Thanks Al Benevolent by the way for your contributions to this board.
What do other people do over time with their bug farms?