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Old 09-16-2008, 03:23 AM   #1
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Default Lime Beer - What to use?

Ok, I admit it, I like the Miller Chill and BL Lime beers. They are light and refreshing and easy to drink. My parents and older sister are hooked on the stuff and buy lots of it, and I like to drink it with them(don't actually buy it myself of course). Now I do not want to make a beer that is a total copy of these kinds, most likely a light ale with some lime flavor to it. My first thought is to use the Cream of 3 Crops recipe as a base for this, use Notthingham to ferment and then rack it on top of a couple of cans of limeade concentrate and the zest and juice from a couple of fresh limes to secondary on for a couple weeks. Anyone think this would get me in the ballpark but without trying to do a piss beer lager like most of the BMC?

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Old 09-16-2008, 03:28 AM   #2
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Light Lagers are harder to get right that many other styles... there just isn't enough there to cover up any mistakes. Outside of that, that lime taste almost has to be a chemically additive. Have you ever done any lagers before? Light lagers? If you can get that right, maybe you could experiment with adding some lime concentrate like you would dry hop in a keg (if you keg)?

That's all I got...

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Old 09-16-2008, 03:49 AM   #3
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Rather than Limeade (more fermentables, and those are typically corn syrup) perhaps lime juice. Perhaps Key Lime juice. You're basically after flavor. Of course, what the BMC product is trying to be is Corona with a lime wedge, without the lime wedge, so you could just brew your light ale and cut up a lime at serving time - but that might be too simple and prone to working...?

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Old 09-16-2008, 07:02 AM   #4
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Just use lime zest, the juice and the pith will just contribute sour and bitterness, respectivelly. The zest of lemons/limes are pretty potent in beer so I'd try adding just the zest of two limes for a 5 gallon batch at flameout and leave it in the primary.

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Old 09-16-2008, 11:49 PM   #5
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To start off, Ecnerwal, sarcasm is not helpful, reading the post for what I am trying to do is your best approach. Anyone can lime-up a beer with a lime wedge, duh. I am going for a recipe here, not serving steps. To quote Randy Mosher - "Brewing is a direct creative act . . .", I want to make something myself, not add to what I have already made at a later time. I only want to approximate the taste, not actually to do a lager at all, I don't have all the equipment for that anyway. I want a light american ale with a descernable lime flavor to it, but not overpowering.

My only reference is mead I have done with lemon/lime zest and juice, but that is not quite done yet and only has a bit of citrus aroma. I think I will try the guidance of ericd on the lime zest at flameout and through the primary only. I will rack onto the juice of two limes and the prime with limeade concentrate that I have filtered the pulp out of. Sound like a decent plan to any of you? Still get too much lime flavor/sour in it?

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Old 09-17-2008, 01:13 AM   #6
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I think you're being a bit too quick to criticize Ecnerwal for what he said. Sarcasm or no, he has two good points.
1) Corn syrup doesn't belong in this equation, it is my utmost recommendation to stick to peel/zest/juice and not some sugar-laden concentrate crap... and
2) A slice of lime is a nice start. Why not, in order to decide what style you want to make with limes in it, you go and buy a mixed 6 pack of different micros that you think might make a good style to add lime to. Maybe you figure out that a Kolsch tastes like crap with lime in it, but an American Wheat tastes really good that way. Once you've narrowed which style or which example you want to add lime to, then you can pull the trigger on brewing 5 gal of it, knowing that you've done the research.

I like the zest, I like the juice... I just think you're going to regret the limeade concentrate.

And before you say it, I'm no hater, I've had both BL Lime and Miller Chill in the past month. I've bought both of them more than once. So don't accuse me of being a hater. I'm just trying to help you accomplish the end result you have in mind.

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Old 09-17-2008, 02:40 AM   #7
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Chriso View Post
I think you're being a bit too quick to criticize Ecnerwal for what he said. Sarcasm or no, he has two good points.
1) Corn syrup doesn't belong in this equation, it is my utmost recommendation to stick to peel/zest/juice and not some sugar-laden concentrate crap... and
2) A slice of lime is a nice start. Why not, in order to decide what style you want to make with limes in it, you go and buy a mixed 6 pack of different micros that you think might make a good style to add lime to. Maybe you figure out that a Kolsch tastes like crap with lime in it, but an American Wheat tastes really good that way. Once you've narrowed which style or which example you want to add lime to, then you can pull the trigger on brewing 5 gal of it, knowing that you've done the research.

I like the zest, I like the juice... I just think you're going to regret the limeade concentrate.

And before you say it, I'm no hater, I've had both BL Lime and Miller Chill in the past month. I've bought both of them more than once. So don't accuse me of being a hater. I'm just trying to help you accomplish the end result you have in mind.

+1 on too quick to criticize

good point made by Ecnerwal but a little smart a$$ish at the end

Try adding the lime zest to the secondary or if you don't secondary add it to the primary after fermentation is finished
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Old 09-17-2008, 02:45 AM   #8
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One thing you may not be considering, which I am:

When you brew some "traditional style of beer", you can pretty much do things that the traditional style of beer was done with, even if it's mostly being produced in huge factories by some other means now.

When you try to brew a "malt beverage based food product" which has only ever been manufactured in a large factory using techniques not available to the home brewer who lacks a sizable monthly lottery check, it may be nigh-on to impossible to replicate (or even emulate) the manufactured product.

Look at the threads on brewing Zima at home. While you are not trying to get quite that out there (make it clear!) you are very much in that ballpark - and the closest thing (I know of, beer trivia artists set me straight if I'm dead wrong, please, and you'll also be helping to point to a style of beer to investigate for the project at hand) to a "traditional style lime-flavored beer" is a beer with a chunk of lime in it. The index to the "New World Guide to Beer" has no lime entry, but it is probably not a definitive reference, just the one I have handy.

If you can get some sort of natural lime flavoring/extract, that is probably the closest thing to what the manufactured product is being flavored with, rather than any sort of juice or peel. BLL says natural lime flavor. But many flavorings are fairly vile in my personal experience, so you'd want to find a good one before proceeding.

Pasteurize, add flavoring, force carbonate and bottle. The effect, ideally, is indistinguishable from open a bottle and drip in the right amount of flavoring, so that might be a testing method. Why Pasteurize? Those live yeast might want to alter the lime flavor if left alive with it in a bottle - and the product you are basing this on is surely Pasteurized.

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Old 09-17-2008, 02:49 AM   #9
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Having actually brewed a lime beer last summer...

In my lime cream ale I used half a jar of this (for a 2.5 gallon batch) in the last 15 minutes of the boil.



Rose's key lime marmalade...I had a half jar, which I diluted with boiling water before pouring it in the kettle.

Plus the zest from 2 limes...

It came out nice, but next time I will double, at least, the lime ingredients. And maybe "dry zest" with some more later, like in secondary.

It was limey, but I would like more of it...and maybe kick up the flavor hopping with some more cirtusy hops....My friends who like BLL really liked the beer.

For a base beer do something like biermuncher's centennial blonde, or Cream of the three crops...Something with some corn in it to approach the crispness of a light lager...but as an ale, brewed at the bottom of your yeast's temp range.

Here's my original recipe...remember for a 2.5 gallon batch...

Quote:
Recipe: Late Summer Lime
Brewer: Michael
Asst Brewer:
Style: Cream Ale
TYPE: All Grain
Taste: (35.0)

Recipe Specifications
--------------------------
Batch Size: 2.50 gal
Boil Size: 3.01 gal
Estimated OG: 1.043 SG
Estimated Color: 4.3 SRM
Estimated IBU: 18.1 IBU
Brewhouse Efficiency: 75.00 %
Boil Time: 90 Minutes

Ingredients:
------------
Amount Item Type % or IBU
3.00 lb Pale Malt (2 Row) US (2.0 SRM) Grain 75.00 %
0.50 lb Caramel/Crystal Malt - 10L (10.0 SRM) Grain 12.50 %
0.25 lb Cara-Pils/Dextrine (2.0 SRM) Grain 6.25 %
0.25 lb Corn, Flaked (1.3 SRM) Grain 6.25 %
0.25 oz Pearle [8.00 %] (60 min) Hops 15.6 IBU
0.50 oz Argentine Cascade [3.20 %] (5 min) Hops 2.5 IBU
6.75 oz Rose Key Lime Marmalade (Boil 2.0 min) Misc
12.00 gm Lime zest (Boil 5.0 min) Misc
1 Pkgs European Ale (Wyeast Labs #1338) Yeast-Ale


Mash Schedule: Single Infusion, Medium Body, Batch Sparge
Total Grain Weight: 4.00 lb
----------------------------
Single Infusion, Medium Body, Batch Sparge
Step Time Name Description Step Temp
60 min Mash In Add 5.00 qt of water at 165.9 F 154.0 F
I bought a bunch of argentine cascade really cheap and was looking for a reason to try them...can't really say much about them, I can't tell if the lime sort of masked them or not...I'll have to brew with them again in something plain, to get a better taste of them...and replacing them withing something knowingly citrussy.

You are better off using something with a known lemon/lime/citrussy taste, like centennial or cascade rather than the crappier Argentinian Cascade.
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Old 09-17-2008, 03:31 AM   #10
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I really wasn't trying to get into a discussion of styles here or a discourse on what the big BMS guys do, just trying to get some feedback with real information in it. I have that now and I will be testing out the lime wedge on a newly brewed Cream of 3 Crops recipe to see if it is even any good like that before I brew up 5 gallons, and thanks Chriso for the idea on that one. Revvy, you really helped me out with your post, very glad to get feedback from someone who has tried this one before. Where did you come by that Key Lime marmalade by the way? I noticed also that you had Argentine Cascade in your recipe, are those a citrusy hop? I know the original is and the Argentine variety is much lower AA but do they retain the same aroma?

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