Brewing Wild and Sour Farmhouse Ales

photo of blueberry sour ale

Join Karen’s Wild Ales and learn how to brew wild and sour farmhouse ales. This class can take many formats and is very easy to customize. Classes are held in my brewery in Fleetwood, PA. I work with you to plan a custom schedule. Here is a general format:

Week 1: Meet for 2 hours to taste various commercial and homebrewed wild and sour ales. Decide on a base beer, yeast selection and hop profile (including spontaneous ferment.) At home, students research recipes and we arrive at a plan for brew day.

Week 2: Meet for 5-6 hour brew day. We will produce about 14 gallons of wort and pump it into primary fermenters. Depending on availability, students return once during the 10 days of primary to harvest yeast, monitor pH, and observe yeast and bacteria in the microscope. We discuss secondary fermentation and the use of fruits, herbs, spices, oak and other modifications.

Week 3: Meet for 2 hours and rack beer into secondary fermenters, make any additions. Now, wait for 2-6 months. Meet occasionally to check, taste, adjust.

Week 4: Meet for 3 hours to bottle or keg the beer. I present detailed instructions for natural bottle conditioning and kegging. Most students choose to bottle the beer. Bottles are divided among students and taken home to carbonate and condition for several weeks.

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