Category Archives: Lacto Sources 3

Berliner Weisse Experiment 3 (Lacto Sources)

Time to do another lacto source experiment!  I entered the White Labs Brevis experiment in a good sized competition and took 3rd place in the sour category and scored a 40.5 so…!  I was pretty excited about how the dried probiotic pills did in experiment 1 so I kept them on my bathroom shelf warm for a few months and decided to try those again to see how they fared.  I also wanted to try another probiotic strain so I picked up a “live” pill (think gel-cap) that must be stored cold and has some lactose (ie dried milk) in it to keep the lacto alive.  Lastly, I wanted to retest the Wyeast 5335 since it did poorly last experiment but was frozen in transit to me.  So, the three tests this go around are:
1> Natures Bounty Acidophilus Pills (same as experiment 1 but warm stored at ~74F for 2 months)
2> Wyeast 5335 (dated 11/24/14 so ~3 months old at time of experiment)
3> Solaray Acidopholus (label says Acidopholus, Bulgaricus and Thermophieris (sp?) in fine print)
The set up is the same as the last two test although I moved from a cooler to a dorm fridge but same heat lamp and temp controller.  Beer was the same – 100% Briess Bavarian Wheat DME OG 1.031.  No hops.  Boiled for 15 minutes.  Fridge set at 95F.
Pitch Rate:
Natures Bounty claims 100 million cells per pill
Solaray claims 3 Billion cells per capsule (you can break them open and dump powder into wort which is what I did)
I emailed Wyeast and got this reply back on cell count:
“The retail packs for our lactic acid cultures (including 5335 and 5223) are packaged at a density of 100 million cells per mL, 10 billion cells total.”
In the Wyeast preso at NHC that I referenced in experiment 1, they called for 38 Billions Cells per Gallon (10 million cells per ml) as a good pitch rate.  Which has me a bit perplexed.  Why would Wyeast sell a pouch of Lacto at 10 Billion Cells when for a 5 Gallon batch they call for 190 Billion Cells (38B x 5)?  This then had me wondering – what does Wyeast do?  So I emailed them and got this response:
“…the cell count is 50-80 million cells per ml and there are 35 ml in a vial.”
So Iet’s take the average of 65 million cell which gives us 2.275 Billion cells per vial.  Even less than Wyeast!  Wow.  If you compare that to 100 Billion cells in a yeast pitch, Lacto is some expensive a$$ bugs!
I wanted to keep my pitch rate the same as last time for Natures Bounty so I could compare to my last successful experiment to see if it could be recreated.  So I used 50 pills which should be 5 Billion cells.  Way below the recommended pitch rate of 38 Billion but higher than the White Labs vial that soured very nicely.
For Wyeast, I just pitched the one pouch so 10 Billion Cells at an unknown viability.
For Solaray I wanted to be closer to the recommened pitch rate so I did 13 capsules (lucky?) for 39 Billion cells also at an unknown viability.  It was $10ish dollars for 100 pills so not too bad on the wallet.
3/9/15 Pitched @ 2:45 pm pH = 5.8 OG = 1.031
3/10/15 Day 1
1> pH – 3.72 malty sweet.  slight sour.  apple juice.  no sign of fermentation.  clean.  sour 2/10
2>pH 4.43 malty sweet.  no signs of fermentation.  clean.  sour  0/10.
3>pH 3.58 aroma – malty sweet.  light sourness.  no sign of fermentation.  clean.  sour 3/10
3/11/15 Day 2
1> pH 3.64 malty sweet.  slight sour.  no sign of fermentation.  clean.  sour 2/10
2> pH 3.97 malty sweet. not sour.  no sign of fermentation.  clean. sour 0/10
3> pH 3.37 malty sweet.  noticeably sour but not strong.  no signs of fermentation.  clean. sour 4/10.
3/12/15 Day 3
1> pH 3.6 similar to yesterday
2> pH 3.75 malty sweet with a hint of sourness.  no signs of fermentaton.  clean  sour 1/10
3> pH 3.28 malty sweet but getting pretty sour.  no signs of fermenation. clean.  5/10
3/13/15 Day 4
1> pH 3.61 unchanged
2> pH 3.71 unchanged
3> pH 3.25 unchanged.
3/14/15 Day 5
1> pH 3.58 unchanged
2> pH 3.71 unchanged
3> pH 3.25 unchanged but maybe a hair more sour.
3/15/15 Day 6
1> pH 3.55 unchanged
2> pH 3.57 unchanged
3> pH 3.15 a bit more sour. 6/10
3/16/15 Day 7
1> pH 3.56 unchanged
2> pH 3.54 unchanged
3> pH 3.11 unchanged
3/17/15 Day 8
1> pH 3.55 unchanged
2> pH 3.54 unchanged
3> pH 3.12 unchanged
3/18/15 Day 9
works.  booooooo!!!!!
3/19/15 Day 10
1> gravity 1.030 pH 3.56 DUMPED
2> gravity 1.030 pH 3.52 DUMPED
3> gravity 1.030 pH 3.06 very sour but still sweet.  7/10.  clean.
3/20/15 Day 11
Since it appeared to be homofermentative with no reduction in gravity and I’m intrigued to see what a late hopped Berliner Weisse will be like, I boiled 3> for 10 mins and put in 1/2 oz of centennial hops, cut heat and let sit hot for 10 mins.  I then cooled to 70F and pitched ~2.5grams of Lavlin EC-1118 (dry white wine / champagne yeast) that was rehydreated w/ palmer method.  I put it in the fridge set to 68F (no thermowell)
3/21/15 8am – small kreusen and slow bubbling
3/22/15 1″ kreusen and steady bubbling
3/23/15 lingering kreusen but seems to of dropped, bubbling stopped and yeast is visibly clearing/dropping.
3/27/15 Bottled 3> FG 1.015, pH 3.14.  sample is clean, flat and tasty 🙂  .7 gallons so boiled .975 oz of table sugar in 1/4 of filtered water to target 3.5 volumes.