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Home Brew Forums > Home Brewing Beer > Recipes/Ingredients > Juniper Saison suggestions
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Old 09-10-2012, 06:37 PM   #1
Alcoholalchemy
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Default Juniper Saison suggestions

So, a while back I went to a bar in here in Stl and a few of my friends were drinking Boulevard Tank 7 Saison with a shot of gin. Apparently the owner suggested it to them. I had a sip and thought it would be a good direction to take a homebrew. So my question: when is a good time to add juniper berries to the brew? Boil? Secondary? All suggestions welcome.

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Old 09-10-2012, 06:43 PM   #2
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Crushed, in a grain bag, in the boil at 20 mins for flavoring. Juniper berries have a very distinct gin flavor and they are quite common in some Scandinavian beer styles. They can also be a little overpowering, so I might suggest about a half ounce per 5 gallon batch and then adjust for flavor from there. Or, you can take the easy way out and do a gin wash, which is to add shots of a good gin to your beer before bottling. This is the easiest method as you can mix it to your own tastes.

PS: You can't order a beer in a traditional bar/restaurant in the Netherlands (ex: Amsterdam locals bar) without being offered a "camel," which is a shot of gin. They drink gin the way Americans drink shots of whiskey (with a beer back).

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Old 09-11-2012, 01:16 AM   #3
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I ended up using about 15g(1/2oz) of Juniper Berries per 5 gallons for the Black Saison I brewed yesterday. I hopped it with Chinook and Simcoe, shooting for a piney theme.

I put the Juniper Berries in when I added my 5 minute addition. However, I no-chill in a sanke keg so the berries are still in there cooling. If that doesn't end up being enough, I read making an infusion with vodka and juniper berries and adding it when you add priming sugar works to add yet more flavour.

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Old 10-20-2012, 04:58 AM   #4
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Why bother making a juniper infused vodka? That's really all gin is- there are usually a couple other ingredients, but generally, neutral grain spirit + juniper = gin. Why not just use a gin that you like (or a gin that has a flavor that you think would compliment the beer) instead of making your own infusion?

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Old 10-20-2012, 11:50 PM   #5
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Gin usually has a lot more than just Juniper as far as flavouring ingredients, it's also nowhere near as strongly flavoured per ounce compared to a homemade infusion.

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Old 10-21-2012, 12:55 AM   #6
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Quote:
Originally Posted by BigRob View Post
I ended up using about 15g(1/2oz) of Juniper Berries per 5 gallons for the Black Saison I brewed yesterday. I hopped it with Chinook and Simcoe, shooting for a piney theme.

I put the Juniper Berries in when I added my 5 minute addition. However, I no-chill in a sanke keg so the berries are still in there cooling. If that doesn't end up being enough, I read making an infusion with vodka and juniper berries and adding it when you add priming sugar works to add yet more flavour.
How'd this turn out? 15g Juniper Berries sounds like a metric crap ton for 5 gallons.
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Old 10-22-2012, 02:01 AM   #7
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It actually turned out very nicely, the juniper is very subtle, but I've noticed the flavour actually coming out the longer it ages. I didn't grind my juniper, I smashed it in a mortar and pestle, so they were all broken up, but not fine like I'd grind pepper.

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