fruit juice addition to beer?

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05m50dan

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I was thinking of making a blueberry wheat ale for my SWMBO, but was wondering if instead of adding blueberries by the pound...would it be feasible to add a concentrated blueberry juice when racking to the keg? I don't have to worry about the preservatives because I'll be force carb-ing in the keg, not bottle conditioning. Has anyone tried something like this? Or know if it's just a silly idea? It gets away from the all-natural aspect of homwbrew, but if it's cheaper and easier, I don't much care :)
 

Pappers_

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I think you do need to care about preservatives, because you want the yeast to kick back up when you add the fruit or juice, to eat up the fruit sugars in the secondary fermenation.

Jim
 

paraordnance

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I was thinking of making a blueberry wheat ale for my SWMBO, but was wondering if instead of adding blueberries by the pound...would it be feasible to add a concentrated blueberry juice when racking to the keg? I don't have to worry about the preservatives because I'll be force carb-ing in the keg, not bottle conditioning. Has anyone tried something like this? Or know if it's just a silly idea? It gets away from the all-natural aspect of homwbrew, but if it's cheaper and easier, I don't much care :)
actually I had a same question in my mind. I was thinking about strawberry beer Fruli and it says they add strawberry juice to it. I can see it can be a problem if you bottle since fermentation will continue and you will have bottle bombs but what if you keg and keep it cold, 36F for example, I imagine fruit juice will not ferment at given conditions
 
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05m50dan

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Well, what I was thinking is that if I'm kegging, the preservatives may stop the fermentation of the juices, but that won't stop the brew from force carbing. I'll end up with a beer that has a good flavor from the juice, and will still be carbed because it's on gas.
I know this wouldn't work if I was bottling, but I'm not.
Again...just putting it out there....the next thing would be to figure out how much for a 5 gallon batch.
 

Pappers_

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I wasn't thinking about bottle conditioning or carbing, 05. Usually, you want the fruit to ferment when you make a fruit beer, otherwise its as if you were mixing juice and beer in the glass, which is fine if that's what you want. Cheers,

Jim
 
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05m50dan

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Thanks for the input Jim. But I've noticed in a lot of fruit beers that when the yeast ferment the fruit juice, it takes a lot of the flavor out with it. That's what I'm trying to avoid. I want something quick and easy that will add a bunch of fruit flavor without adding alcoholN additional fermentation. I was thinking something along the lines of the frozen concentrate?
 

biochemedic

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Thanks for the input Jim. But I've noticed in a lot of fruit beers that when the yeast ferment the fruit juice, it takes a lot of the flavor out with it. That's what I'm trying to avoid. I want something quick and easy that will add a bunch of fruit flavor without adding alcoholN additional fermentation. I was thinking something along the lines of the frozen concentrate?
This is a lot more true if you are adding the fruit/juice as part of the initial fermentation mix...the activity of the primary can definitely scrub out a lot of the aromatics. If you're adding late in primary or in secondary you should retain most if not all of your fruit aroma and flavor. Be aware though, that the perception of some fruit sometimes still depends on having some residual sweetness... All that being said, I don't think you'll be disappointed at having some of the added sugars being fermented...most beers have enough residual gravity that fruit can be reasonably perceived, but if you're planning something like this in the future, you could consider a less fermentable mash so you intentionally end with a little higher gravity (~1.016-1.018 rather than ~ 1.012-ish)

I'd personally add it at the end of primary so that any re-fermentation can occur there, and then if you still want to secondary for clearing, you can do that...

If you really want to halt fermentation, and keep all of the sugars added with the juice, you may need more than what preservatives are in the juice...I'd consider adding appropriate amounts of potassium metabisulfate and potassium sorbate the way we do when we are planning on backsweetening a mead. Of course, as you said, you'll be able to force carb in the keg...
 

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