Author Topic: Adding fruits to beer such as raspberries, blueberries, blackberries etc.  (Read 3856 times)

Offline eabearce

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Just thought that I would throw this idea out there since I cannot seem to find a good straight answer on this. Last year I made a Raspberry Wheat with three pounds of frozen(and pasteurized by me) raspberries and then dumped the cooled down slurry into my secondary. Being that there was such a mess in the secondary I transferred all of this to a tertiary to allow for some settling before I bottled it. I recently made the same beer, however I added a blend of Raspberries, Blackberries, and Blueberries. Now I am at the same dilemma as last year. After racking to a tertiary vessel, I once again ran into the issue of my auto siphon clogging with all of the berry goo. So, enough of my rambling, and I will get straight to the question. Could I just take the same three pounds of berries and simply run them through my juicer, extract the pulp and toss it, and then just simply pasteurize the juice that I have and add that to the secondary and receive somewhat similar results minus the mess? What are your thoughts on this???

Offline denny

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You really don't need to pasteurize anything.  I just take frozen fruit out to thaw, then add it to a secondary and rack the beer on top.  When you heat it, you destroy flavors and set the pectin to end up with a gloppy mess.
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Offline eabearce

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You really don't need to pasteurize anything.  I just take frozen fruit out to thaw, then add it to a secondary and rack the beer on top.  When you heat it, you destroy flavors and set the pectin to end up with a gloppy mess.

I'll try that denny if you or anyone thinks my idea isn't that great. My thoughts I guess were with just a juice from these that I could avoid the mess altogether?
« Last Edit: August 02, 2014, 06:49:30 PM by eabearce »

Offline fmader

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+1 to Denny's advice. It's nice to freeze and thaw the fruit to halp break up the membranes and such. Try containing your fruit in a paint strainer bag. Sanitize the bag, fill it with fruit, and zip tie it off. 3 lbs should fit in a gallon bag. I just used a five gallon bag to contain 10 lb of cherries. I don't make it tight, I give the fruit some room in the bag.
Frank

Offline eabearce

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+1 to Denny's advice. It's nice to freeze and thaw the fruit to halp break up the membranes and such. Try containing your fruit in a paint strainer bag. Sanitize the bag, fill it with fruit, and zip tie it off. 3 lbs should fit in a gallon bag. I just used a five gallon bag to contain 10 lb of cherries. I don't make it tight, I give the fruit some room in the bag.

Forgot to mention that I am fermenting in glass carboys everyone :( My bad! That is another reason that I thought about the juicing option. I wouldn't be against using a strainer bag if I had a larger open top to add fruits. Thanks fmader!
« Last Edit: August 02, 2014, 07:06:08 PM by eabearce »

Offline fmader

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+1 to Denny's advice. It's nice to freeze and thaw the fruit to halp break up the membranes and such. Try containing your fruit in a paint strainer bag. Sanitize the bag, fill it with fruit, and zip tie it off. 3 lbs should fit in a gallon bag. I just used a five gallon bag to contain 10 lb of cherries. I don't make it tight, I give the fruit some room in the bag.

Forgot to mention that I am fermenting in glass carboys everyone :( My bad! That is another reason that I thought about the juicing option. I wouldn't be against using a strainer bag if I had a larger open top to add fruits. Thanks fmader!

Yeah, that makes things trickier. It just might be worth your while, hassle, and piece if mind to buy a bucket to use as a secondary when using fruit. I almost always use plastic carboys... Except when using fruit lol
Frank

Offline HoosierBrew

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I say either   1/  Go for the juicing if you intend to use just carboys, obviously.

                   2/  Take Frank's (and my) advice, to use a bucket for secondary and make the use of whole
                        fruit easier.

Having said all that I prefer using fruit purees, after many PITA racking sessions from using whole fruit. Using whole fruit produces a metric s@#! ton of goopy, pulpy fruit matter that you have to separate from your beer. Purees like Oregon brand or Vintner's Reserve are EVERY bit as good as whole fruit and much easier to work with. Whatever route you choose, good luck !
Jon H.

Offline brewinhard

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I say either   1/  Go for the juicing if you intend to use just carboys, obviously.

                   2/  Take Frank's (and my) advice, to use a bucket for secondary and make the use of whole
                        fruit easier.

Having said all that I prefer using fruit purees, after many PITA racking sessions from using whole fruit. Using whole fruit produces a metric s@#! ton of goopy, pulpy fruit matter that you have to separate from your beer. Purees like Oregon brand or Vintner's Reserve are EVERY bit as good as whole fruit and much easier to work with. Whatever route you choose, good luck !

+1.  And they come sanitary and ready to use!

Offline klickitat jim

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And they tell you the gravity points (º plato) of the fruit. Only a guess with fresh/frozen

Offline eabearce

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Thanks everyone for the great advice for the fruit beer. I will definitely not be doing it the same way next time, and appreciate all of your help  :D

Offline mattybrass

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I brewed a raspberry saison last year that i just rinsed the fresh berries and tossed em in the carboy. They broke down pretty easily over the month they were in there and were easy to pour out after i racked out the beer. I did have to double rack the beer to get all the bits and pieces out tho.

Offline jtoots

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I recently used the same berries, frozen... I blended until they were fine enough that I could get them through a funnel (pretty much a puree), then just poured them straight into the carboy.  Siphoning out went surprisingly well, I just kept the siphon off the bottom where all the fruit was.  I definitely lost a bit of volume doing this, but the only thing I think I'd change would be to go with the muslin bag over the strainer.  Also blending was a PITA... next time I'll thaw first.

Online ynotbrusum

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Furthering this thread, how long do you keep the beer on the fruit and do you push down the fruit like winemakers do with the must?  I am concerned about oxidation with the latter and simple thirst on the former!
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Offline mattybrass

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Furthering this thread, how long do you keep the beer on the fruit and do you push down the fruit like winemakers do with the must?  I am concerned about oxidation with the latter and simple thirst on the former!

Most of the local breweries who use fruit in their beers advised me to leave it at least a month. Also no need to press, the alcohol should pull out all the good stuff.

Offline shoptoylife

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Re: Adding fruits to beer such as raspberries, blueberries, blackberries etc.
« Reply #14 on: September 12, 2014, 04:43:47 PM »
Have you tried using freeze-dried fruit?  This tends to be a highly concentrated version of the fruits that are used in cooking, primarily in molecular gastronomy.  You could macerate the fruit ahead of time however I'd say that adding this in during steeping would be along the lines of having this with your other dried grains.  Try to source non GMO / Organic if possible.

David Chang (Momofuku) had a brilliant show on PBS called Mind of a Chef - this clip shows the part where he's talking about freeze-dried foods / fruit http://mindofachef.tumblr.com/post/36886962742/david-chang-plays-with-freeze-dried-foods