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Old 08-18-2011, 09:26 PM   #1
seraphorist
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Default brewing kombucha to add to beer

i posted this already in the lambic/ wildbrew thread and am getting no responses, but i just now realized there was a special kombucha thread also! maybe this will be more productive.

i am currently brewing a batch of kombucha (my first) to try blending it with a home brewed beer for the tartness. i know kombucha left at room temp produces a scoby, and that seems like it would be really gross come time to bottle condition. i'm not sure, but it seems like you would get a teeny tiny scoby in every bottle neck. some kombucha brands you buy at the store are pasteurized to keep them from further fermentation, so i figure i can just bring my kombucha up to 150º (i read somewhere not to let your kombucha get above 160º, no details as to why. i'm guessing nasty off flavors), and if i do this before blending it it should be fine. i have no experience with this so far, but you got to do it to learn it. anybody else try brewing beer with kombucha? any tips, ideas on what i just said?

i'm going for a very kombuch strong flavor presence. i tried a goose island fleur recently with such high hopes that were very quickly dashed. a good beer, but i didn't even get a hint of kombucha (why even advertise it as such?). i hear there is another brew out there on the market that is more potent, but i do live in oklahoma... my chances of having it are so so very slim. hence my homebrew experiments.

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Old 08-22-2011, 06:46 PM   #2
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If I were going to experiment I would ferment the beer until it is done. Dump some unfiltered kombucha in without raising the temp. This way the kombucha will continue to ferment the residual sugars in the beer. I'd let it go for 2-4 weeks at room temp and you should wind up with sour beer. I'm interested to see how it comes put if you do this. You won't get a fully formed scoby in the bottle necks I don't think. Just some floaters

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Old 08-23-2011, 02:33 AM   #3
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i will probably try a few different methods this first time around. your idea sounds good, i am trying to stay away from floaters though, as i think it might gross my beer drinking friends out. also, i don't have lots of fridge space to halt fermentation on more than a few beers at once. i usually just let them sit at room temp until about an hour before i am going to want them.

i will definitely post my results though, what worked and what i would never try again.

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Old 09-09-2011, 02:27 AM   #4
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Please do post back with results. I just learned about kombucha last weekend at a beerfest. I loved it. So much in fact, that I'm growing my own mother now.

However, there doesn't seem to be a lot of info on kombucha out there. From what I've gathered so far, the yeast makes alcohol, and the bacteria eats the alcohol. If you put a scoby in beer, won't it just eat the alcohol and turn the beer to vinegar given enough time?

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Old 09-09-2011, 07:16 PM   #5
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Acetobacter xylinum (the main contributor to the structure of a scoby) is aerobic, so your beer shouldn't form much of a scoby after bottling. Acetobacter are also responsible for metabolising alcohol into acetic acid, so once the beer's sealed away from air you shouldn't need to worry about that process continuing.

However, pasteurisation is probably still the way to go, as Acetobacter is not the only bacterial component of the scoby, and some of the others (plus whatever environmental contaminants you've picked up during fermentation) may not be as obliging.

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Old 09-11-2011, 03:51 PM   #6
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Rahahb View Post
However, there doesn't seem to be a lot of info on kombucha out there. From what I've gathered so far, the yeast makes alcohol, and the bacteria eats the alcohol. If you put a scoby in beer, won't it just eat the alcohol and turn the beer to vinegar given enough time?
i will be pasteurizing the kombucha before i add it to the beer, so there won't be any live bacterias to do that. i will be adding the scoby to another batch of tea for next time, not to the beer.
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Old 09-12-2011, 03:55 PM   #7
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I had this stuff (Lambrucha) over the weekend @ a sour beer fest and it was amazing http://beeradvocate.com/beer/profile/22399/56855

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Old 09-12-2011, 05:01 PM   #8
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My wife brews kombucha and bottles it with fruit juice and sometimes pieces of fruit in swing top bottles. There is always some little bit of "growth" in each bottle so that I have to pour carefully into the glass if I don't want to drink it. It's usually in the bottom.

You may or may not get this in your beer-kombucha, not sure. I can take a photo of what I'm seeing in my wife's bottled kombucha when I get home tonight. Will post it here.

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Old 09-12-2011, 05:06 PM   #9
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Quote:
Originally Posted by frailn View Post
My wife brews kombucha and bottles it with fruit juice and sometimes pieces of fruit in swing top bottles. There is always some little bit of "growth" in each bottle so that I have to pour carefully into the glass if I don't want to drink it. It's usually in the bottom.

You may or may not get this in your beer-kombucha, not sure. I can take a photo of what I'm seeing in my wife's bottled kombucha when I get home tonight. Will post it here.
you won't get it if you pasteurize. i've drank a few bottle scobies, it's not pleasant. they're usually clear and hard to spot, but slimy.
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Old 09-12-2011, 05:08 PM   #10
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what was the base beer that you wanted to blend with?


i think that they discouraged boiling so that you don't denature some of the healthy amino acids and such that are created during fermentation. i don't think that would be a problem for the beer/kombucha mix.

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