Author Topic: elderberries / juniper berries  (Read 2508 times)

Offline alcaponejunior

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elderberries / juniper berries
« on: April 01, 2012, 04:36:33 PM »
has anyone worked with these?  I've had elderberry wine and loved it.  I've also had a couple of juniper berry beers that were delicious.  Can you make a good homebrew fruit beer from them, and if so, how would you go about it?  I'd be doing partial mash.  I see dried berries of both types available on homebrew websites.

Offline narcout

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Re: elderberries / juniper berries
« Reply #1 on: April 01, 2012, 07:01:38 PM »
Have you heard of sahti? Check out episode 24 of Brewing TV.

Offline dimik

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Re: elderberries / juniper berries
« Reply #2 on: April 03, 2012, 12:28:20 PM »
I have used elderflowers as late additions and didn't like it too much. Never tried elderberries though.
As for juniper berries, I use them often and even make completely hopless brews with juniper berries as the bittering agent. Use like you do with hops. Mind though that the flavors you get out of say 1 oz will not be very prominent. Check my story here and maybe it'll inspire you. I also made junipered IPAs with berries in 10-15 min additions and liked the result.
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Offline alcaponejunior

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Re: elderberries / juniper berries
« Reply #3 on: April 04, 2012, 04:28:21 AM »
Haha, great answer!  Love your blog, BTW, everyone should read BKyeast.wordpress.com  ;D

oh and yes, DFH Sah'tea is one of my favorite beers!

Offline Jimmy K

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Re: elderberries / juniper berries
« Reply #4 on: April 04, 2012, 05:37:46 AM »
I used elderberries in a pale ale and liked it. I used ~ 3lbs, froze them, then put them in a nylon grain bag and threw it in the kettle after flameout. After 10 minutes I lifted it and suspended it just above the wort to drain the juice out (I gave it a little squeeze with some spatulas too). The juice will stain your fingers BTW.  It's on tap now and the beer is fruity/berry with a nice red color.
 
Elderberries contain tannins in their skins like grapes, so be careful about leaving them in contact with beer for too long and I'd really advise against pureeing them as it will speed up tannin extraction.
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Offline beersk

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Re: elderberries / juniper berries
« Reply #5 on: April 04, 2012, 06:18:59 AM »
"Your mother was a hamster, and your father smelt of elderberries!"
"What if, that thing I said?" - Philip J. Fry

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Offline leejoreilly

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Re: elderberries / juniper berries
« Reply #6 on: April 04, 2012, 08:18:54 AM »
"Your mother was a hamster, and your father smelt of elderberries!"

"Holy Grail" Ale?

Offline morticaixavier

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Re: elderberries / juniper berries
« Reply #7 on: April 04, 2012, 12:01:22 PM »
"Your mother was a hamster, and your father smelt of elderberries!"

"Holy Grail" Ale?

you can get that. monty pythons hole grailale
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Offline beersk

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Re: elderberries / juniper berries
« Reply #8 on: April 04, 2012, 12:48:20 PM »
Call it "Kiniggit Ale" or something like that. 
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Offline morticaixavier

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Re: elderberries / juniper berries
« Reply #9 on: April 04, 2012, 01:08:36 PM »
Call it "Kiniggit Ale" or something like that.

Ahh you said it!!!!!

Now I said it!!!

Ahh I said it again!!!!

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Offline DrewG

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Re: elderberries / juniper berries
« Reply #10 on: April 04, 2012, 01:16:04 PM »
"Its just a flesh wound"
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Offline alikocho

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Re: elderberries / juniper berries
« Reply #11 on: April 04, 2012, 01:53:15 PM »
"Your mother was a hamster, and your father smelt of elderberries!"

Ah, the insult. This comes from the fact that elderberries were used by the British to adulterate Port or make "English Port" using elderberries. It's seen as a bad thing to do by the French, hence the insult in Monty Python and the Holy Grail....

Elderberries make good wine, but they are very tannic. I don't doubt they'd work well in a beer or even a melomel. One note of caution - they contain a neurotoxin, but this is destroyed by heat. Throwing them in at flameout or before will deal with the toxin.
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Re: elderberries / juniper berries
« Reply #12 on: April 04, 2012, 05:43:20 PM »
"What are you going to do, bleed on me?" Imperial Red
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Offline alcaponejunior

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Re: elderberries / juniper berries
« Reply #13 on: April 05, 2012, 04:50:16 AM »
I used elderberries in a pale ale and liked it. I used ~ 3lbs, froze them, then put them in a nylon grain bag and threw it in the kettle after flameout. After 10 minutes I lifted it and suspended it just above the wort to drain the juice out (I gave it a little squeeze with some spatulas too). The juice will stain your fingers BTW.  It's on tap now and the beer is fruity/berry with a nice red color.
 
Elderberries contain tannins in their skins like grapes, so be careful about leaving them in contact with beer for too long and I'd really advise against pureeing them as it will speed up tannin extraction.

I will try it exactly like this.  I'll probably also try it with a basic pale ale recipe.  Thanks! 

The monty python derail is hilarious, BTW! :D

I have tried holy grail ale but don't have time to look up what I thought of it right now, and can't remember either.

Offline beersk

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Re: elderberries / juniper berries
« Reply #14 on: April 05, 2012, 07:01:47 AM »
"Your mother was a hamster, and your father smelt of elderberries!"

Ah, the insult. This comes from the fact that elderberries were used by the British to adulterate Port or make "English Port" using elderberries. It's seen as a bad thing to do by the French, hence the insult in Monty Python and the Holy Grail....

Elderberries make good wine, but they are very tannic. I don't doubt they'd work well in a beer or even a melomel. One note of caution - they contain a neurotoxin, but this is destroyed by heat. Throwing them in at flameout or before will deal with the toxin.
Thanks for that explanation, I always wondered why they said that in the movie.
"What if, that thing I said?" - Philip J. Fry

Jesse