Experimental Beer Caramel Ginger Beer - Home Brew Forums
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Old 06-04-2012, 10:18 PM   #1
gingerporter
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Jun 2010
Guatemala
Posts: 10
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Recipe Type: Extract   
Yeast: Coopers Ale   
Yeast Starter: 500ml   
Batch Size (Gallons): 4   
Original Gravity: Unknown   
Final Gravity: Unknown   
Boiling Time (Minutes): N/A   
Primary Fermentation (# of Days & Temp): 3 weeks at room temperature   
Tasting Notes: Very strong ginger, pleasant finish between sweet and dry, creamy, no alcohol taste   

I have been trying to create a sweet bottle carbonated ginger beer for a while without using artificial sweeteners, lactose or darker malts (which are either difficult for me to get or I don't want to use). I wouldn't say this is sweet, in the sense of a store bought ginger beer (and what I have been aiming for), but it is the closest I have got so far.

So my theory is that using caramelised sugar (which is supposably less fermentable) that some of the sweetness from the caramelising process will be remain after fermentation. My first attempt (using wine yeast) and much higher quantities of caramelised sugar resulted in a very high alcohol ginger wine - which indicated to me, that depending on how the caramel is prepared, a large percentage of the caramelised sugar is still fermentable.

This time when making the caramelised sugar (see link below) - I left it on the stove until it just started smoking - it seems to have imparted a balance, not sweet but not really dry, leaving a nice after taste.

The process that I have used to extract the ginger flavour appears to be very successful - and it has a bite similar to store bought ginger beer (very strong). After three weeks in the bottle the ginger is dominant though I'm hoping the caramel/toffee will come through a little more as it ages.


- 1.25 kg ginger, sliced/food processed. Cover with boiling water in 2 or 3 containers and leave for 1/2-1 hour, pour liquid through sieve into fermenter. Repeat process twice until most of the ginger has been extracted.

- 0.75 kg caramelised brown sugar. Directions can be found here - see making caramel syrup http://www.franklinbrew.org/wp/?page_id=391. I split the 750gm into three batches. Once made dissolve into boiling water and add to the fermentor.

- 1.35 kg brown sugar - adjust for desired alcohol strength. Either dissolve in boiling water or dissolve into warm "ginger water" before adding to fermentor.

- 4 lemons juiced

Top up fermenter with cool /cold water and add some yeast nutrient and acid blend. Once at room temperature add yeast starter. After primary fermentation is finished bottle.



 
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Old 08-12-2012, 06:46 PM   #2
jared_es
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May 2012
boston, ma
Posts: 1

I've been looking for a recipe similar to this. How did it come out?



 
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Old 08-12-2012, 07:42 PM   #3
gingerporter
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Jun 2010
Guatemala
Posts: 10
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Quote:
Originally Posted by jared_es View Post
I've been looking for a recipe similar to this. How did it come out?
Very good. I still have a few bottles left and will be making another batch soon. Haven't thought of any tweaks so I will probably make the same recipe.

I find that 1/2 the people who try it really like it the other half are indifferent. The ginger taste is very strong at the start (nice sharp bite) but it has a nice mellow malty finish. It's my favourite ginger beer that I have made.

If you don't want a really strong biting ginger taste I'd suggest cutting back on the ginger or shortening the extraction process.

 
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Old 09-02-2012, 12:59 AM   #4
porcupine73
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Aug 2012
Fort Meade
Posts: 813
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This sounds like a nice recipe. Question - did you peel the ginger before you used it? Peeling that much ginger seems like it would be a real pain. I've tried some things without peeling it but it seems to then have an extremely earthy taste.

 
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Old 09-02-2012, 01:15 AM   #5
gingerporter
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Jun 2010
Guatemala
Posts: 10
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Quote:
Originally Posted by porcupine73 View Post
This sounds like a nice recipe. Question - did you peel the ginger before you used it? Peeling that much ginger seems like it would be a real pain. I've tried some things without peeling it but it seems to then have an extremely earthy taste.
No. I just chopped it up in chunks and then put them (unpeeled) in my food processor. The amount of ginger I used really dominated the brew so if there is any earthy taste I probably wouldn't be able to taste it.

I just started building a boat so haven't got round to brewing this again - but I hope to in the next couple of weeks.

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Old 09-02-2012, 01:42 AM   #6
porcupine73
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Aug 2012
Fort Meade
Posts: 813
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Great thanks, that will make it much easier. I started a batch a couple days ago but grew weary of peeling the ginger so in 6.5 gallons I have only maybe half or 3/4 pound of ginger. I think I'm going to need a l o t more than that.

 
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Old 12-03-2012, 01:06 AM   #7
gingerporter
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Jun 2010
Guatemala
Posts: 10
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I finally got around to making another batch. This time I used white sugar (2.5kg) and I increased the caramelised sugar component to 1kg. I only had 0.75kg of ginger (thought I had more). It should be interesting to compare this to the last one - more toffee less ginger.

Here is a pic of the caramelised sugar just before I cracked it up and added it to the hot ginger liquid. I cooked the one on the right a bit longer so it would turn out a little darker.


 
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Old 10-26-2013, 02:26 PM   #8
dolver
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Dec 2011
New York, NY
Posts: 6

Any update on how the second batch came out (I know this was a while ago)?

 
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Old 10-30-2013, 01:39 PM   #9
gingerporter
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Jun 2010
Guatemala
Posts: 10
Liked 1 Times on 1 Posts


This latest batch started out tasting good but left me with a severe headache the following morning. Not sure if it is the caramel that is causing this. 6+ months later the headaches have disappeared and it now tastes really good. We opened a bottle last weekend and the comment from the other two drinkers was can we open another. It is not as sweet as I would like but it is now nicely balanced.

 
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Old 10-31-2013, 12:25 PM   #10
dolver
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Dec 2011
New York, NY
Posts: 6

Awesome! I just started a batch. Given your comments, I went ahead and added lactose to try to sweeten it up, but I pureed that ginger good! So I am excited to get that serious ginger bite! I'll let you know how mine turns out in a few weeks.



 
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