Author Topic: Source for quality dried bitter orange?  (Read 1662 times)

Offline brewsumore

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Source for quality dried bitter orange?
« on: September 24, 2017, 01:11:17 PM »
I'm considering brewing Candi Syrup's recipe for Chimay Doree (Gold).

I'm wondering if anyone can recommend and vouch for a brand and/or supplier of dried bitter orange, that doesn't have a ton of pith.

Thanks.

Offline BrewBama

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Re: Source for quality dried bitter orange?
« Reply #1 on: September 24, 2017, 01:54:33 PM »
I've used these guys but to tell the truth I didn't shop around because I consider it a commodity without much difference between one supplier and another

http://shop.greatfermentations.com/product/bitter-orange-peel-1-oz/beer-brewing-herbs-spices


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Offline brewsumore

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Re: Source for quality dried bitter orange?
« Reply #2 on: September 24, 2017, 04:29:28 PM »
I've used these guys but to tell the truth I didn't shop around because I consider it a commodity without much difference between one supplier and another

http://shop.greatfermentations.com/product/bitter-orange-peel-1-oz/beer-brewing-herbs-spices


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That's a nice closeup photo.  Do you recall if, when you bought it, what they sent was Brewer's Best which seems to be the primary provider in their herbs and spices section.

In my experience I've bought some that had a lot of pith and big pieces that was pretty blah, and I have some that I got from another provider that is fairly fine ground with very little white pith, but they since have gone to Brewer's Best, which is unknown to me.

In Radical Brewing, which was published a long time ago, Mosher recommends avoiding commercially purchased bitter orange peel since it typically can be bitter or flavorless, but I've heard some different opinions, and am wondering if there is some tried and true product out there somewhere.

My understanding is that some of the taste characteristics of actual bitter orange, found in some authentic Belgian ales, etc., such as its floral qualities, cannot be replicated by substituting a combination of fresh sweet orange peel plus a lesser amount of grapefruit peel like many brewers use, and as recommended by Mosher in Radical Brewing.

I'm trying to see what options there are for more successfully imitating Belgian brews that use it, and just a feel for a good source.

I also emailed the supplier you metioned to see what is the source they use.
« Last Edit: September 24, 2017, 04:35:06 PM by brewsumore »

Offline reverseapachemaster

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Re: Source for quality dried bitter orange?
« Reply #3 on: September 25, 2017, 06:24:55 AM »
Larger brewers are undoubtedly buying from a large producer which is likely producing a product very similar to what is available to us from homebrew shops.

If you wanted to find fresh bitter orange and dry it yourself (or just use it undried) check around Latin or other ethnic grocery stores in your area. I find them quite easily at the local Mexican grocery chain. I agree the flavor is not the same as the combination of sweet orange and grapefruit. That is better than just sweet orange but nowhere near the right floralness.
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Offline Ale Farmer

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Re: Source for quality dried bitter orange?
« Reply #4 on: September 25, 2017, 06:54:58 PM »
For what it's worth, I've used kumquats and had great success--but that then begs the question of where you would get kumquats.... Where I live, they only arrive in supermarkets in November/December.
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Offline brewsumore

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Re: Source for quality dried bitter orange?
« Reply #5 on: September 27, 2017, 10:03:05 PM »
Does anyone who's used the Brewer's Best brand care to share if they think it is a good product?  It seems to be a primary brand out there.  Also what Great Fermentations sells.

Probably just fine - I guess I'll buy some from my LHBS and evaluate it.