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tom sawyer
05/24/11 08:21 AM  
Carbonating With Brett?
I've read a few posts recently where people talk about carbonating a beer with Brett. Does it even work fast enough to do this, and how do you know what amount of carbonation you might get? I could estimate the amount of residual sugar that might be used up but if theres bacteria and Brettt it might not all be converted to CO2. Thoughts?
05/24/11 01:58 PM  
Re: Carbonating With Brett?
see the discussion "brett, oak keg or secondary?" for your answer
tom sawyer
05/24/11 06:22 PM  
Re: Carbonating With Brett?
I was inspired to ask the question by reading that post, and your opinion and the one other was noted. I was hoping to get a more broad consensus about how well it might work. I suppose Brett does convert sugar to ethanol and CO2 just like Sacch yeast, although it throws a lot more esters than its tamed cousins.
05/24/11 06:33 PM  
Re: Carbonating With Brett?
If you're willing to wait about a year then it might work for you but it also depends on how much dextrins are available for the brett to chew on. I still recommend just force carbonating the keg.
05/24/11 09:31 PM  
Re: Carbonating With Brett?
are you talking about a beer with brett as a secondary fermenter or a 100% brett beer or only adding brett at bottling time and letting it ferment out the residual sugars from a normal ferment to carbonate? i haven't had a problem with either of the first two.

as for the third option, i would only do it with regular 12oz and caps if the beer is at a final gravity of equal to or less than 1.004. maybe .5 if you regularly carbonate beers highly via bottle conditioning and get good results (non-exploding bottles). i would also probably pitch the brett as a healthy dose of slurry rather than just a wyeast pack or white labs vile.

05/25/11 11:18 AM  
Re: Carbonating With Brett?
I've done a couple of 100% Brett c beers, and they carbonate fine with a normal priming routine. I opened my first of a new BPA done that way last night, and it had perfect carbonation, and a fluffy, stable head. Finished at 1.003.
05/25/11 01:52 PM  
Re: Carbonating With Brett?
To add to the consensus. For my 100% Brett beers I used the same priming sugar amounts that I use for Sacc beers and I got about the right amount of carbonation.

I have not tried to guess at residual sugars left for Brett at bottling, because a few gravity points will blow up a normal bottle plus waste your hard work. Or leave a flat beer.

05/25/11 07:21 PM  
Re: Carbonating With Brett?
On a side note, last November I brewed up a dark winter saison with WY 3724. A 1.068 OG fermented with the sacch. down to 1.013. I racked to a keg, and added a packet of WY Brett B. and the dregs from a Fantome Saison. I let the beer sit at cool temps (50-58 deg) for just under 6 mos. During that time I tasted the beer from a tap every now and then to gauge how it was progressing. Towards the end of the aging period, the beer was definitely well carbed up in the keg w/o any gas addition. I would say the CO2 volumes were probably at least 3 volumes.
tom sawyer
05/27/11 04:03 PM  
Re: Carbonating With Brett?
Interesting contrasts in results, of course there are a lot of variables as was pointed out but it sounds like Brett can do the job if it is in adequate numbers and theres the right amount of carbs.
05/27/11 07:16 PM  
Re: Carbonating With Brett?
I use normal priming sugar amounts for my 100% brett beers as well with pretty standard results.

For beers where brett was added in the secondary, I either make sure the FG has bottomed out or keg it and just make sure to release a little pressure from time to time.

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