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Help With Bottling A "amberlic"

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durgarth

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Guys I'm hoping to draw from some of those a little more experienced than I in regard to when to bottle my AMBERLIC. I'm an all grain brewer and have been for many years. A couple of weeks ago a mate of mine and I put down a Lambic. Now that's not the problem, in fact we are looking forward to drawing out 25 litres from the oak barrel in a few months, just to see how it goes.

The issue is that I had 15 litres of American Amber wort in a cube and decided to drop this onto the yeast cake (just for fun) to see how it turned out, hence the name AMBERLIC. The wort was sitting at 1050 and the yeasties chewed this down to 1018 in 2 days (crazy). The fermentation has been sitting at 19 for 7 days with no change. I have increased the temp to 22 and it has slowly dropped to 1015.

I know in theory the bacteria now should now start to kick in and slowly chew through the last of the sugars giving the lovely sour note to the beer......here is the question.

When do I now bottle and how much (if any) glucose should I add to the bottles?

I have purchased some PET bottles specifically for the task, so I suppose I can loosen the cap if the bottles become too carbed, but I'm seeing input from those more knowledgeable.

Any help gratefully received.

Hoggy
 

Goldenchild

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What yeast/bugs did you ferment with?
Brett is a high but slow attenuator and with your gravity still sitting at 1015 would seem to have a fair bit more to chew through. I can't see why it wouldn't get down well under 1010

Bottling even without sugar could be risky at this stage.
Any reason why you can't let it ferment out in bulk for a few months?

Or if your really happy with the taste as is you could kill of the yeast and referment in the bottle with regular sach strain.
 

Mr. No-Tip

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I'll chime in as the other half of this brewing project...

Yeast was the WL Belgian Sour Blend. I think the main thinking of bottling now (in PET) was the risk of oxidiation via a half full HDPE fermenter if it was left for months and months...that and the fridge space I guess, Hoggy? :p
 

Goldenchild

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fair enough.
Id recomend buying something along these lines for your sours
http://www.liquorcraft.com.au/afawcs0133827/CATID=0/SUBID=376/ID=339/SID=677749140/productdetails.html
http://www.grainandgrape.com.au/product_info.php?products_id=8557
and then storing it in the darkest coolest place in the house for atleast a month or two.

If thats out of the question and your not willing to risk oxidisation (ive had sours survive well over a month in bunnings fermenters with glad wrap) then i'd be bottling with little to no sugar as i dont think the bretts really had a chance to kick off after only 2 weeks.

I could well be wrong but id prefer a slightly undercarbed sour brown then a box full of grenades.

Slightly :icon_offtopic: but any reason why you fermented your lambic in plastic and then racked to the barrel?


edit: just a thought do either of you keg? thats just another option to rack to and age to minimise oxidisation.
 

Mr. No-Tip

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Keg isn't a bad idea...

Reasons for not fermenting in the barrel? Somewhere along a shitload of reading I picked up a suggestion of doing primary and then racking into the barrel. Can't think where and I know it's not the only (or traditional) way. Probably the main consideration was that we didn't really want to be dealing with a buttload of krausen pissing out the top of the barrel!
 

raven19

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I would be leaving it a number of months - it could take 6months or more to get right down to 1002 - 1006 ish (final gravity will be dependant on a number of factors though!)
 

petesbrew

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I've only done one, but I left it in a secondary plastic fermenter on some brett for 5 months with no problem. Can't remember how much sugar/dex I added when priming, but they took almost a year to gain decent carbonation.

Here's a tip for you. Go to lots of parties & get the champagne bottles. Very handy for special, belgian, lambics, gifts, etc.
 

durgarth

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Thanks For the input and feedback. I wis I had read this beforehand. I am we'll have jus ,are 10 hand grenades. I had 15 PET bottles that I bought specifically for this. I didn't want exploding glass. So I put 5 with no extra glucose, 5 with one carb drop......and God help me 5 with 2 drops.

I'm thinking tomorrow i might empty the lot into an old keg and leave it for another 2-3 months as suggested.
 

Goldenchild

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Mr. No-Tip said:
Keg isn't a bad idea...
ive done it for a few bugged beers now as much like you had no idea if the beer was finished and didnt have a carboy to rack to.
i also have one that i bottled at 1.004 and wish i hadnt as i now have an extremely carbed buggy berlinner which isnt so bad but is a bastard to pour.
 

durgarth

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1004, wow...still I bet it tastes great.

I've decided to leave the ones in the PET bottles, and regularly crack the seal, letting the built up gas escape. I dont want to f$)k around with it too much now. The 4000 ml that I had to put in glass will now be put into demijohn thanks to Mr NoTip.

appreciate the input....i would have left them in the bottles and had a "sour" brewery, not to mention an unhappy wife.

Still it was always only for giggles.
 

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