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Chris Kennedy
05/13/09 09:02 PM  
Leaving a Flanders on the Primary
So traditionally Lambics are left in the primary, on all their lees, and the brett eats up the autolysed sacc yeasts, correct?

Well what happens if you do this with a Flanders Red? What character will that give you? What will it change about the beer than if you had racked it off the yeast after the initial primary ferment?

05/13/09 10:04 PM  
Re: Leaving a Flanders on the Primary
I left my Flander's Red on the yeast (lees) for approximately 9 months. I wouldn't say it caused anything bad. However, it was very acetic like which I contribute to the plastic bucket I used more so than the less. Our club has a Whiskey barrel that we used before that has been converted for sour beers. Some have goin in the barrel very young (still actively fermenting). The barrel beers have been nowhere as acetic has my plastic bucket attempt. I'm not sure if it ould make much a difference. Might make a good experiment. Brew a 10 gallon batch, rack 5 off the lees to age, leave the other 5 on the lees. Compare...
06/04/09 04:19 PM  
Re: Leaving a Flanders on the Primary
I've got a Flander's Red that I pitched a packet of Roeselare into more than a year ago in a Better Barrel. I should be racking it off next weekend, so I should be able to see what kind of an effect sitting on the cake for that long has had. It's got a nice thick pellicle going right now:


I'd be interested to know, has anybody reused a year old primary Roeselare cake for another batch? When I rack off this Red, I was thinking of dropping a Dark Strong on top of it, pellicle and all.


06/04/09 11:46 PM  
Re: Leaving a Flanders on the Primary
I just made a flanders red with the Roeselare yeast about 2 weeks ago. The primary fermentation is done, but it was pretty active, and left a bunch of gunk on the inside of the neck of the carboy. I am tempted to rack it off because of this.
06/05/09 10:49 AM  
Re: Leaving a Flanders on the Primary
Just as an extreme example...

I recently bottled a batch that was primary fermented with the Roeselare blend and then had a lacto and brett added to the primary fermentor. It was fermented in a Stainless "milk-can" and I did not transfer it to secondary for four and a half years. I was trying to mimic the Lambic fermentation on that one, but I still ended up with a high final gravity (1.011 from 1.060).

There were absolutely no signs of autolysis and the beer tasted good enough to go on to NHC finals this year.

So there is one data point that says you can do it just fine.

06/06/09 01:51 PM  
Re: Leaving a Flanders on the Primary
I have a related question: Can/Should I reuse the entire yeast bed from a 1-2yr old lambic?
06/19/09 12:15 PM  
Re: Leaving a Flanders on the Primary
Well I can't answer the "should" you reuse the yeast bed, but you certainly "can" reuse it. I recently racked a Flanders Red that has been sitting on the cake for about 14 months and dropped the Dark Strong with raisins (sort of a Cuvee'esque beer) right onto the cake, pellicle and all. It took a couple of days to get started and show signs of fermentation, but by the third day it blew the airlock off the top of the carboy and was overflowing. Won't know how it tastes for a while, but it smells heavenly...

Interesting to note, I racked the Flanders into a carboy, since I didn't have any clean kegs with me and I was surprised how quickly (3 days) a new pellicle formed, as I still haven't kegged it.

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