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New and lookign for help with adding orange to beer.

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jasno999

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I am new to this enthre world. I received a Mr. Beer kit for Christmas and I have just jumped into makign beer. I know the Mr. Beer kit is not the best thing out there or the most pure form of beer making but I think it is a great startign point for me.

Here is my question. I want to make a wheat beer usign my kit and I would liek to add some orange flavor to my beer. (Sort of like a blue moon). I am guessign that I can add some squeezed orange juice and some of the orange zest to my mix.

However I am not sure how much to add, when to add it or how to add it......

I realize that I want to cook the juice and zest for some period of time at a temperature lower than boil to make sure I kill any bacteria and what not. However I am nto sure for how long and at what temperature. I also don't know when to add the items. Do I add this right to the Wort while it is cooking or do I do this in a different pot and add it to the wort right before chilling.


Goal is to get a good orange flavor into the beer.
 

Yooper

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Well, I wouldn't use any orange juice at all. The sugars in the OJ would ferment out, leaving you with a bitter harshness I would think.

What I would do is to zest an orange (making sure to remove all the white pith under the peel as that is very better) and add a couple of teaspons of that to the beer. You can throw that in when you boil the wort, so it's sanitized. You could also add it after, by adding a little bit of water to the zest and boil for a minute or so and dump that all in.

What I would suggest, though, is to make the beer according to the directions and just serve it with an orange slice. That way you have more predictable results. Once you put that zest in, you can't take it out if you don't like it!
 

Gammon N Beer

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Welcome to HBT and this great hobby as well.

Why not just make the beer you have the way it was intended? Then, in your next batch or even later get a kit that is more to the style you want with citrus added as a part of the recipe.

That way you can learn how to make beer and more importantly the process and procedures following an established guideline.
 

Professor Frink

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+1 what Yooper said, the zest of an orange works well, but make sure you avoid the pith (white part) which is very bitter.
 

bigjohnmilford

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welcome to hbt, looks like you've already gotten to see how fast people are to help out. good luck with your brewing.
 

Melana

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Try using a microplane grater... it is great for just getting the outer tasty part of the peel without all the white pith.
 
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jasno999

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Very nice to see how friendly and helpful everybody is here.

I want to add some orang to the beer just because I want somethign a little different than the regular stuff they give to me. Granted I coudl jsut make the beer with what is in the kit and I am sure it would be good but they don't tell people not to try things.

Actually they tell you you can add different things and they give some help in terms of how much specific items will add to alchol content (brown sugar, honey, etc.)

However they don't give you much in terms of addign fruit. They have thsir own line of fruit mixes that come in a can so I think they want you to purchase those. However they don't have an orange mix and truthfully I want to be a little different and go outside the box to try adding somehting.... My first batch is a few days away from botteling so I want to add a little somehting to the second batch.


I realize that I need to make sure I kill all the bacteria in the orange. I was thinkign about addign a few (2-3 ounces) of the juice. Now I may stil ldo that but maybe not since you guys said it will not add any real flavor. So instead I will do more with the zest.

However I have read that if you cook the zest for too long or at too high a temperatuer that the oils basically cook out. I want to kill bacteria but I want flavor to be added.


So how about this.... In a second pot I will add a little water and bring it to a temperature of around 120F. I will put the zest in there and cook it for about 10-15 mins. Then I will add that water to the wort.......

What about a orange extract if one exists????

Also do you guys have any pointers on how to go thru the process so as to make the beer more smooth? - Meaning how to get the head more smooth with smaller bubbles.....
 

brauhaus

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you have some serious questions that might pertain to a beer that is not created with a Mr.Beer kit...

this might sound like a rhetorical answer, but i'd suggest investing in some books on brewing beer and beer brewing techniques.

the orange zest is going to be your best bet, the Mr.Beer site shows that the fruit puree is typically added after the wort is poured into the "keg" and right before the yeast is pitched.... (so just following the manufacturers specs, why not add the zest after the wort is poured into the keg? and as long as your oranges are cleaned up I don't think i'd be necessary to boil them... but being a noob myself what do I know?)

like i said, these are all purely suggestions, but i'd start out mastering the basics before tackling anything too complicated.
 

DeathBrewer

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orange peel and coriander at the end of the boil (assuming you do a boil with Mr. Beer)

that'll give you some nice belgian wit taste. search for recipes...i believe there are some blue moon clones (blue balls wit comes to mind)
 

Chriso

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You should really consider leaving this batch as-is, so that you can work on your process first. Since you are new to brewing, you need to understand WHAT is going on before you should mess with your process.

If you are set on an orange-y taste, buy http://www.mrbeer.com/product-exec/product_id/102/nm/Witty_Monk_Witbier1 for your next kit. It is a witbier with the orange and coriander tastes you are looking for, similar to Blue Moon.

After all, why fix it if it's not broken?

Or, if you REALLY want an orange-y taste, take your current batch, brew it as the instructions tell you, and then once it's ready to drink, pour 1 oz of orange juice in the bottom of your batch, then pour your finished beer in the glass with it. Then it will be sweet and orange-y and drinkable.

Nothing feels worse than dumping a batch down the drain because of something you could've prevented.
 
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jasno999

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Well I apreciate the concept of just gettign the process down but I have my mind set on doing a little more and addign some more than the normal ingrediants. Plus you are allowed to add more ingerdiants so I woudl like to give it a try.

I guess I will just use the zest and I will basically put it in a small amount of water that I will maintain at 120F THen I will add that to the wort. I don't think I will strain it I will just throw it in and see what happens.

If anybody has a time and temperature I should use to kill bacteria on the zest without losing the oil flavors please let me know. Otherwise I will give this the best tri I can and I will look up some information on how to pasturize other fruits and use that.
 

Chriso

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Very well then, please keep us posted on how it comes out. I've never used O.J. as an ingredient.
 
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jasno999

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Will do. I am not goign to overdo it with the OJ. I may not even use any actual juice just zest.
 
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jasno999

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Thanks. Hopefully that was not a sarcastic "huh. good luck with that."
 

Yooper

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I don't know- it might have been. You asked experienced home brewers for their opinion, but when they give it to you, you don't want to hear it. Do what you want- it's your beer.

But, yeah, I'd be willing to be there was some sarcasm in there.
 

gruntingfrog

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Make sure you are very sparing with the amount of orange zest you use. I made one that I added way too much orange zest (in this case an orange amber was the intention) so it smelled like Mr. Clean Orange All Purpose cleaner. I can't get past the smell to tell you what it tastes like.
 
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jasno999

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Must tell you- I did as a half a orange worth of juice and I took zest from two oranges and added to the wort on my Mr. Beer. It came out great. I can definitly taste the orange in the beer but it is just right. Has a blue moon quality to it but it is different. It has a nice smooth feel to it and is easy to drink.
 

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