Low attenuation w/ wild yeast capture

Discussion in 'Homebrewing' started by redgorillabreath, Aug 21, 2019.

  1. redgorillabreath

    redgorillabreath Disciple (345) Mar 29, 2015 Pennsylvania

    Getting ready for my maiden voyage with a batch fermented with a wild capture. I’ve established that it’s hop-tolerant. In the process of building it up, I see that it brings the sg of DME wort from 1.080 to the low 1.02’s. Just tasting that wort, it’s amazingly pleasant for a starter; a little Apple/pear flavor, and pleasantly tart (I wouldn’t say sour).

    The yeast hasn’t been “isolated”, so I don’t know who all’s in there. I captured it last summer from a blackberry. At that time, the aroma of wort fermented with it had a definite yeast odor, but also some downright unpleasant stuff going on too (beyond just mousy). I had built it up several times last summer but it still didn’t smell like anything I’d want to consider drinking. Long story short, over the winter in my fridge, it magically cleaned up. It makes a tasty wort, and also turns apple juice into a delightful cider that my wife (who doesn’t do funk at all) really likes. It floculates very well after the activity is over @~4 weeks.

    A 6th generation Belgian saison yeast that I have takes the same 1.080 wort to 1.007.

    Question: When the wild yeast bottoms out at about 1.021, should I really believe that it’s done? I’m going to make 10 gallons of wort, and split it between the wild yeast and the Belgian I mentioned above. Hopefully 5 gal of ale will be enough that I can enjoy some up front, but have some for aging. I’m wondering about the potential for bottle bombs.

    Many thanks and Cheers!!!
  2. PortLargo

    PortLargo Devotee (451) Oct 19, 2012 Florida

    I think it's pretty safe to say "there's no way to know" . . . till it's finished and aged of course. My suggestion would be to bottle in swing tops: they are stronger and easier to vent (if required).

    WILD, adjective - deviating from the intended or expected course
    redgorillabreath likes this.
  3. wasatchback

    wasatchback Disciple (317) Jan 12, 2014 Utah

    Finding wild yeast that ferments all the complex sugars in wort isn’t that easy. There are plenty of domesticated brewing strains that can’t even ferment maltotriose. If you want more attenuation trying mashing quite low for a long time and using some dextrose.

    Or just blend it with a Saison strain.
    redgorillabreath likes this.
  4. telejunkie

    telejunkie Aspirant (252) Sep 14, 2007 Vermont

    Maybe one of dem killer strains of yeast...

    I wouldn't trust it so much in bottles unless you can get it to dryness (or close like with the saison) or able to cold store in near freezing. Good luck and sounds interesting!
    redgorillabreath likes this.
  5. redgorillabreath

    redgorillabreath Disciple (345) Mar 29, 2015 Pennsylvania

    This may be the time to use corked bottles. Ive been saving them up over the years as I try corked commercial ales. Between the 24 oz and 12 oz bottles I have, there’s probably close to a case’s worth. I’ve done some for fun, but this may be the time to use them all and save the corked bottles for aging, and drink the capped ones sooner.

    I thought about “finishing” with the Saison yeast, but at least on this go-around I’m looking for the solo yeast to get a good picture of what I’m dealing with flavor-wise.
  6. PortLargo

    PortLargo Devotee (451) Oct 19, 2012 Florida

    You may know this, but if corking you must also be caging. Without the wire cage it ain't gonna work. Un-regard the above if you already planned that. For simplicity I'd borrow or steal some swing tops . . . easier overall, just as strong, and practical to release some pressure if needed.
  7. redgorillabreath

    redgorillabreath Disciple (345) Mar 29, 2015 Pennsylvania

    Unfortunately, all of my swing tops are tied up. However, my son just discovered that he likes the beer in them so they may be available by then:rolling_eyes:, not that I’m not doing my share. My corking plan is to put the corks in a little deep so that the cages are loose. That way, if the cages get tight, it’s because the pressure is pushing them out.
  8. redgorillabreath

    redgorillabreath Disciple (345) Mar 29, 2015 Pennsylvania

    Btw, many thanks for the comments.