Sunday, May 12, 2013

The brewing of Lambic

The difference between lambic and other beer types lies not only in the raw materials used, the cooling in the open air, the spontaneous fermentation in wooden barrels. The brewing method too is different. This method in belgium is called "metode belge" today refer to the turbid mash method. Also the boiling time is different. Whereas 75 minutes is very general rule in brewing. For the lambic we boil the wort for four hours. The purpose of this cumbersome  procedure is to obtain a wort in which only certain types of micro-organisms can survive. First the wild yeast go into action. A second phase is the primary alcoholic fermentation. which takes few months (3to6). A third phase is the lactic fermentation, the pediococci dominate the yeast flora. In the fourth phase, after 8 months (about), the secondary alcoholic fermentation starts, with the fermentation level increasing to 80%. It is during this phase that the brettanomyces bruxellensis and brettanomyces lambicus do their work. In the fifth and final stage, the brettanomyces and the pediococci remain in suspension and the composition of the lambic will not change dramatically any more. It is during this stage the beer is used to produce Gueuze and or Kriek.

Right now I'm in stage two of this process.