September 2, 2014

Spontaneous Fermentation Project Part 12 -- week 34 of fermentation

It's been a month since I last posted about this project and something new has happened so it's time for a new post. I'm not sure what is going on but something is definitely changing. There is definitely some kind of fermentation activity. Or my yeast have become zombies and awoken from the dead.

When I last wrote about this spontaneous fermented beer, the jellyfish-like clumps of what I believe are yeast had been quietly floating on the surface while the liquid surface began to develop small clumps of tiny bubbles. The jellyfish had a dry surface texture as one would expect from their constant exposure to the air. The airlock showed slow bubbling, which in combination with the small clumps of bubbles suggested either fermentation from inside the beer or off-gassing of CO2 due to rising summer temperatures.

I first noticed something had changed a few days ago when I walked past the airlock and it was completely still. No more gas was leaving the fermentor. I figured whatever was going on had run its course and now the beer was just silently stewing like all my other aging beers. I topped up the airlock just to make sure it wasn't too dry. Nothing looked out of place. Today I saw more bubbles in the airlock so I took a peek at the beer. The jellyfish are alive. Or undead. The dry, still top layer has disappeared into a wet, fresh yeast appearance and there is bubbling in the surface, suggesting either fermentation has restarted within the zombie jellyfish or fermentation from below is increasing and the off-gassing is disrupting the jellyfish slumber. Small clumps of bubbles on the surface remain. Here's a picture:

I forgot to take a picture for the last update but you could really see how dried out the jellyfish were before this sudden turn of events. Well, at least something interesting is going on again. Below is the picture from update 10 (23 weeks). You can see the jellyfish were a little less bubbly before. The contrast between now and at 23 weeks isn't as dramatic as the contrast between now and a couple weeks ago but if you look closely at the picture above there is more bubbly texture than there was at week 23. This is the same jellyfish in both pictures.


Post a Comment