Next, I've split the cider related projects from the rest of the posts. At the top bar you will see Home, Lambic, and Cider. Blogspot, as of yet, doesn't allow for actually posting to different pages, so this is a little work around. Home is everything, Lambic is everything non-cider, and Cider is obviously all cider related posts. Additionally, I've added a direct link to the Brett Strain Guide up there.
I've also created a Facebook page for the site. I'd like to keep the main site clean and resource focused, so for the little things that occur that don't quite warrant a blog post, I'll be using Facebook. Also, all of the posts from here on out will show up on the Facebook page. If you are on Facebook, you can click the "like" button on the right side bar. -->
While we wait another year for the barrels to be old enough to start making fruited lambic, I have re-attempted making Sikaru with some young barrels. A couple months ago, 200lbs of organic dates were shipped to the brewery where I selected the two most mature barrels from batch 1 (which is 1 year old). We pitted 30% of the dates and added 100lbs of dates to each barrel. My original thought was to let these ferment in the barrel for the typical 3 months, but after discovering how much sugar dates contain, it may take longer for these barrels to finish fermenting!
The other side project going on is a sour blonde. The yield from our batch 2 brewday was not as high as the first batch (winter vs summer), and so two of the emptied lambic barrels from racking over batch 1 were not filled with new lambic wort. To make use of these barrels we filled them with Blonde Ale wort and allowed the bugs in the barrel to ferment the beer. After aging for 6 months these barrels are ready. To make room for a fruit addition, some of the base beer was kegged. A sample of it showed up at Great Taste and will show up at future O'so events. The rest of it will be fruited in the barrels and eventually bottled.
Keep your eyes open (or watch the FB page for updates), these small side projects should be available this fall/winter.