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Old 07-23-2006, 05:03 AM   #1
Sep 2005
Loveland, CO
Posts: 100

Since the chokecherries are close to ripening at our elevation, someone was asking about using chokecherries in beer.
Has anyone used chokecherries? What style beer? How were the cc processed? When were they added?
Primary: MT
Secondary: Belgian Wheat
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Old 07-23-2006, 05:24 PM   #2
Apr 2006
New York
Posts: 320
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Whats a chokecherry?

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Old 07-23-2006, 09:55 PM   #3
Apr 2006
Iowa City
Posts: 265

I always thought chokecherries were poisonous, but that's probably just referring to cyanide in the seeds/pits. I didn't know people ate them at all, figured they were just for the birds.


Basically they are the berries of a common shrub.
Secondary: Strawberry Wine

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Old 07-23-2006, 10:17 PM   #4
Ale's What Cures You!
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Jun 2006
UP of Michigan, Winter Texan
Posts: 70,034
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Chokecherries make terriffic jam and wine, but I don't know about beer. I'm sure that someone has tried it and will have some input.

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Old 07-23-2006, 11:09 PM   #5
Jan 2006
Lincoln, NE
Posts: 851
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A chokecherry is an incredibly astringent berry that grows on bushes. Chewing on one feels like it's sucking all the moisture out of your mouth. I had chokecherry wine once and it was the driest stuff I've ever drank.

They might be good as a replacement for some of the hops in your beer. Since they're so dry I would think they would override a lot of the sweetness of the beer. It's worth a try - why don't you do it and let us know? Then, when they're ready around here I could make some

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Old 10-09-2008, 05:14 PM   #6
Oct 2008
Posts: 1

I was looking for a chokecherry beer recipe but cannot find one. Chokecherries are very good and quite edible but they have a large seed you probably don't want to eat. I picked some and planned on juicing them and saving a quart and using it as an additive during secondary fermination. Somehow I need to experiment with adding a few cups at a time (or less) and seeing how it tastes. I was thinking I would use a lager type of recipe ..maybe? I have no idea but will give it a try.

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Old 10-10-2008, 07:03 PM   #7
Dec 2006
Missoula, Montana
Posts: 86

Just made some syrup and still have 5 lbs frozen to make wine with. For chokecherry beer, maybe you could just add a little prepared syrup to secondary. But then you are adding more sugars. Maybe the straight unsweetened juice would be the better option. Hmmm, maybe Ill try that for my Holiday Ale.

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Old 12-11-2011, 09:24 PM   #8
Jan 2010
Saskatoon, Canada
Posts: 77

Did anyone try this?

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Old 03-18-2013, 02:58 AM   #9
Feb 2013
Fredericksburg, Virginia
Posts: 1

I plan on adding a prepared chokecherry syrup to the primary of a Belgian golden. I'm working my way through the parts of the Midwest I have lived in. With a sweet grass golden and a chokecherry golden I figure I have the best aromatics and flavors in a few beers. Then I could blend them to create a fantastic combination. Try the ingredient, then think about what style it would compliment best. Everyone agrees that chocolate goes better with a stout than a DIPA.
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Old 02-28-2015, 05:25 AM   #10
May 2011
Somers, MT
Posts: 5
Liked 1 Times on 1 Posts

I know this post is old, but thought I'd add my two cents for future searches on the topic. I grew up with a ton of chokecherry bushes in our yard. We picked them every year for jelly and syrup, and my father started making a decent wine out of them when I was in college. I have read that they are a preferred way to add cherry flavor to dark beers (stouts and porters) as it takes a ton of sweet cherries to impart any flavor. I would recommend that you don't add them to a very hoppy beer as the hops and tart cherry flavor probably wouldn't meld very well. It will be a very dry cherry flavor, but would probably work very well in a chocolate and/or milk stout. The sweetness from the lactose will probably work very well. It will not be a "cherry" flavor like you would expect from a sweet cherry, but will be a unique flavor. I hope to start brewing with chokecherries (and sand cherries, nanking cherries, and other tart bush cherries) soon.

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