Brett and Sour Beer Brewing – BeerSmith Podcast #17

by Brad Smith on June 14, 2011 · 7 comments

This week we talk about methods for making sour and wild beers using Brettanomyces yeast (Brett). Brett is used in many sour beers styles including Lambics, Gueze, Oud Bruin, Berliner Weisse, and others. My guests are Drew Beechum and Nathan Smith – both of whom have done extensive brewing using Brett.

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Topics in This Week’s Episode (44:48)

  • This week’s guests are Drew Beechum, author of the “Everything Homebrewing Book” and Nathan Smith, of the homebrewing site.
  • In the announcements, I cover the launch of BeerSmith 2.0 – for both PC and Mac. The program was released just days ago, and you can grab your 21 day free trial from our main website at
  • Drew tells us some of the more popular styles that use Brett for making popular sour beer styles.
  • Nathan explains exactly what Brettanomyces (Brett) yeast is and what it does to beer.
  • Drew tells us what is “normal” for a Brett fermentation and cautions us to use kegging vs bottling.
  • Nathan explains how to try to determine when the end of fermentation is complete and how to get the most out of your Brett fermentation.
  • Drew talks about how to push the funky character forward – including adding fresh wort along with the Brett.
  • Nathan talks about using fruit with your Brett beer – including blackberries and cherries.
  • Drew explains why you need to keep your plastic items used with Brett segregated from your other equipment as plastic or porus materials can be contaminated by Brett.
  • We chat a bit about Drew’s brewing for the AHA conference
  • Drew talks about sour mashing and how it can be used as an alternative for brewing sour beer
  • Nathan talks about using wood to age your sour beer and his experiments working with oak
  • Both guests provide their final thoughts on brewing with Brett!

Thanks again to Drew Beechum and Nathan Smith who were kind enough to appear on the show!

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