May 9, 2012

Bottle dregs

It's not normally worth saving the yeast rich dregs of a beer for later use. You can build a starter from dregs and get decent results but with easy access to healthy, fresh and pure strains of yeast, it makes more sense to buy.

The exception to that is when the bottle of beery goodness you're drinking holds a yeast that you can't buy.

De Ranke XX Bitter, I love you so much
I only recently got my hands on De Ranke's XX Bitter and it was a revelation. Every beer since, part of me has been saying 'Why are you drinking this? Get another De Ranke!' Inspired, I've been planning something in a similar style.

Part of the planning is working out what yeast to use and the internets weren't very helpful for once. Having searched, it looks like they used to use yeast from Rodenbach but since then they've changed and there doesn't seem to be any clarity about what they're using now. The yeast doesn't seem to be as bold as other Belgian beers but there is a nice clove character in there buried under the hop assault and I'd like to at least try it out so to the dregs it is.

Plenty of yeast growth
I boiled up some dried malt extract in water and poured about 150ml into a sanitised erlenmeyer flask. Once it was cool, the De Ranke dregs went in and I covered it with gladwrap. A week later I stepped it up from 180 to 800ml and now it's about ready to go into a brew.

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