Sunday, March 13, 2011

BRETT!!!!!!! #2

100% Brett claussenii and 100% Nelson Sauvin hopped beer. This is my second all brett, single hop beer. The last batch of BRETT!!! was 100% Brett c. 100% Amarillo and it was an awesome beer. It took 2nd place in the Southwest Regionals at last years NHC, and earned a Honorable Mention in the second round of NHC.

I love this style of beer, last month I finally was able to try Sanctification, Russian Rivers 100% Brett beer. It is dry, tart, funky, fruity and just delicious. I was inspired to make this series of beers by Sean Paxton (The Homebrew Chef), Tomme Arthur (Lost Abbey), Michael Tonsmeire (The Mad Fermentationist), and The Burgundian Babble Belt (100% Brett Discussion). I named them after my big hairy, funky friend Brett, who's mom would yell from the back of the house for him in a gutural BRETTTTTTTTTT!!!!!!!! when he failed to complete one of his chores. I plan on continuing to beer this series of beers once a year, changing the brett species, and hops each time.

When I make these beers I stress the yeast so they produce more sour, tart, fruit flavors. I do this by not making a starter and just pitching the pack of yeast. I have had a few 100% brett beers from the Bruery who make a starter and I find them nice but too clean for the flavor profile I am looking for. Sean Paxton used a similar method in his Sonoma Pale Ale, not pitching a starter of Brett a.

In addition, I will be changing the way I post recipes to mimic a new homebrew blog I found called Hopfen Treader. His post are all about the inspiration and background and not recipe, numbers based. I find it a little more fun and easy to read (let alone easier to post). I have decide to post this way because my favorite part of homebrewing is recipe creation (and drinking the final product of course). Let me know what you think.

Recipe: 2-Row, Carapils, Crystal 120. Nelson Sauvin hops (60, 20 Flame out, Wyeast Brett claussenii.


  1. Interesting note on not using a starter to stress the yeast.

    I'm not convinced of this method as one could simply raise the temps to stress the yeast enough to produce a not-so-clean flavor profile.

    I'm interested to hear your results, and more specifically, to find out how long it took for the beer to ferment out (since there is no starter).

    As for the recipe details - I vote no ;)

    I really enjoy reading the recipe as a source of inspiration. The devil is in the details!

  2. My last all brett beer finished low but took a while to start fermenting and it took about 3 months to get to the point where it was drinkable. It went through a really weird phase in which the beer as my wife and friend described it as having a vomit-like flavor and aroma. I could taste something there that they could not, I knew it just needed some time. It did really well in competition as well. I think that the stress forces the brett to produce more acid and fruit (specifically tropical fruit) than using a large starter. I will keep you posted on this beer but I figure it still has a month or so to go.

    You really are a scientist, I'm guessing a molecular biologist or biochemist...I am a marine biologist and so some of the details bore me. I know its not good science, but since my brewhouse is much more like a farmhouse than a QC lab, I get inspiration in other ways. I will always post recipe details if requested...just ask and they are yours. I just know I will post more if I don't have to re-type or cut and paste all the details.

    Congrats on the new family addition!

  3. I've found the same thing with stressing yeast by under-pitching! I always under pitch 3711 in my Saisons, and the result is absolutely amazing. When I do a nice big starter it just doesn't produce the same flavors and aroma. I'll have to try that with Brett as well as I wish my recent Saison Brett had a little extra acid kick to it. I'm all about sharing's help me progress to see the details of others recipes. To each there own. Cheers!