After months of hemming and hawing I finally did it: I brewed my first intentionally sour beer. Bad Tipper is a Flanders Brown or Oud Bruin. I think Oud Bruin sounds cooler but that is just me.
Since this is my first sour and my beer names, so far, have all been related to my experiences of caddying, Bad Tipper follows suite. I never liked bad tippers as they usually worked you harder, took longer, and then stiffed you at the end of the round. Needless to say there were loops that I “soured” upon when I heard their names and did everything in my power to avoid them. So Bad Tipper is my homage to the cheap asses of the world.
I have been talking to Mike at The Mad Fermentationist for a while picking his brain. He has been super helpful and I hope this beer is somewhere near as successful as all the sours he brews up. I have also asked and been lurking on HomeBrewTalk.com, a great set of home brewing forums, to see what others have been doing. All this fueled the bug (no pun intended) to brew a sour.
Per Mike’s suggestion, as he likes very sour beer, I pitched the bugs with the normal yeast on brew day (this past Sunday) with the hopes of pushing the sourness up probably past the level that an Oud Bruin should be, but heck, it is my beer and this is what I want, lol. I used a English yeast from White Labs and Wyeast Roeselliere blend. I made a one gallon yeast starter (actually about a liter short of what Mr. Malty calculator suggested, but that was the limit of my fermenting vessel.
The brew day went well, I even cooled my wort with my chiller in the laundry room, as I didn’t want the outdoor hose to freeze, and drained all the water straight into the washing machine. Several hours later I could see that the yeast was just beginning to show and by morning a full krausen was on.
Now the patient part begins. I plan on splitting up the beer and aging some on different types of fruits (cherries, blackberries, and possibly others) while keeping at least one gallon clean as a test case. The beer should be ready in 9 to 12 months and need to be on the fruit for another 2 to 6 months.
If I can talk my wife into allowing me to get the glass fermentors, I would like to brew another three or so sours in the next year. Her argument is that I have no idea if these will turn out and it takes such a long time to know. Good point but I never knew if my first brew day would be a success. Enjoy!
Useless Fact: There are more people in New York City than there are in the states of Alaska, Vermont, Wyoming, South Dakota, New Hampshire, Nevada, Idaho, Utah, Hawaii, North Dakota, Delaware and New Mexico combined.
Note: I didn’t post the recipe as I took straight from Brewing Classic Styles by Jamil Zainasheff and John Palmer. My next sour will be of my own invention.