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Old 14-12-2016, 01:36 PM   #11
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For the sake of completeness: Bru'n Water "Pale Ale Profile" aims for (what I use; my thanks go out to Martin Brungard - the author of Bru'n Water - for encouraging my more recent experiments with large gypsum doses):
Calcium, 140ppm
Magnesium, 18 ppm
Sodium, 25ppm
Sulphate, 300ppm
Chloride, 55ppm
Bicarbonate, 110ppm
...which is half the sulphate (mainly as calcium salt - gypsum - and magnesium salt - Epsom salts) that can be found in Burton-on-Trent bore water. I wouldn't even attempt to try and dissolve enough gypsum to create 600ppm of sulphate. And at those levels (if you managed to dissolve it) you run the risk of discovering gypsum's laxative effect! Some add gypsum to the mash ingredients, but then you'll have no idea how much actually dissolved.

300ppm of sulphate as gypsum certainly gives the Burton "snatch" flavour, but as I said this is only in effect for a month or two if combined with very low CO2 levels (and don't refrigerate!). Perhaps 600ppm gives a longer lasting "snatch"?
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Old 08-05-2017, 10:53 PM   #12
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Popped in to Lidl this evening and they had the new bottle conditioned Pedigree at £1.25 per bottle. I picked up 4 with the intention of harvesting the yeast and growing it up for a future brew. I drank one tonight (purely to investigate how much yeast there was in the bottle).

It was a really nice pint but they must only leave the tiniest amount of yeast behind. I did drain the dregs so some probably ended up in my glass but I couldn't see anything in the bottom of the bottle and my beer was still crystal clear, so it didn't all end up in the glass.

Hopefully there is still enough to culture up.
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Old 10-05-2017, 06:26 PM   #13
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As "Simonh82" has resurrected this post, I should take the opportunity to update my musings...

I consider "snatch" to have been a red herring. It really does apply to the faint sulphurous whiff which you might get, or more likely will completely skip you by.

Big doses of gypsum (and attendant salts) really did have a noticeable, "rounding" (?), effect on the malt flavours making a bitter easily recognisable as a Burton bitter (like Marsden's Pedigree). But the effect was transient, most recently only lasting about three weeks. Despite that this last beer hung around for a bit (four months! Replacement hip puts life on hold for a bit) and this maturing bought out the documented characteristics of gypsum laden brewing water - i.e. dry and enhanced bitterness, and by "dry" I mean like sticking your tongue on a used blackboard! I can imagine these features being welcome in a heavy (OG1.065+) beer, but in a "running bitter" of about 4.5% ABV?

So whether or not "true" yeast can be gleaned from a bottle of Marsden's, I think yeast is rather low down on the list of things to do to get a Marsden's Pedigree clone.
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Old 12-05-2017, 12:00 PM   #14
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Hopefully there is still enough to culture up.
Has your culture shown any life yet? I'll probably be passing by a Lidl this weekend and will pick up a bottle or three if they've got any.
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Old 12-05-2017, 01:35 PM   #15
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Has your culture shown any life yet? I'll probably be passing by a Lidl this weekend and will pick up a bottle or three if they've got any.
I've not started yet. We've got a new baby due any day so I'm postponed until I know I'm not going to have to dash off to the hospital.
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Old 13-05-2017, 02:50 PM   #16
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I've not started yet. We've got a new baby due any day so I'm postponed until I know I'm not going to have to dash off to the hospital.
I've just picked up 2 bottles from Lidl and they do look a bit cloudy at the bottom. I'll put them in the fridge for a day to encourage the yeast to fall even more then have a go at culturing one up. Should be fun!

Good luck with the new arrival, hope it goes well for you and your wife.
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Old 19-05-2017, 07:06 PM   #17
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Just opened a bottle of the new Pedigree. It's been in the fridge for a few days and I took it out this morning to warm up to room temperature during the day. First thing to note is that the last part of the pour produced a murky cloud in the glass - there is definitely yeast in there waiting to be harvested. Mouthfeel, taste and carbonation to me is much closer to the cask version than the old bottles used to be. If you like Pedigree you should appreciate the improvement they've made. It's very good actually.

I won't be harvesting yeast from these bottles I have now because I don't have an immediate need for it - I can get more from our local Morrisons any time I need them.
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