Michael Tonsmeire Drops Some Knowledge

My favourite home-brew channel (Chop & Brew) just posted a video of sour beer guru Michael Tonsmeire discussing the brewing of sour beers. He starts off with the basics (advice to follow if brewing your first beer), but goes into some of the finer details later in the video. So grab your headphones, a homebrew, and retreat to a quiet corner of your home and let the knowledge flow through you…


Want the Cole’s notes version of the details? Here’s two handy tables:
Controlling Funk:
Add wheat maltAvoid wheat malt
Perform a ferulic acid rest (42C/1208F for 15-30 minutes)Avoid low-temperature rests; go straight to Saccharification
Primary ferment with a spicy strain (Belgian, hefeweizen)Primary ferment with a clean yeast
Use a phenolic Brett (B. lambicus, B. bruxellensis)No Brett, or a mild brett (B. claussenii)
Sour beer in primary fermenter (autolysis = phenols)Rack to secondary after fermentation. Optional:  cold crashing/fining/filtering
Bottle conditionForce carbonate
Controlling Acidity:
High saccharification temperature (158-160F, 70-71C)Low saccharification temperature (146-148F/63-34C)
Use less attenuative brewers yeastPitch highly attenuative brewers yeast
Sour with L. brevis and PwediococcusUse Wyeast/White Labs L. delbrueckii, or L. buchneri for souring

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *