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Aaron Western NY
06/24/11 01:10 AM  
berliner weisse raspberries
I would be interested in any advice if anyone has put raspberries in a Berliner. Amounts, time, etc. Thanks, Aaron
06/24/11 09:20 AM  
Re: berliner weisse raspberries
If you do that you won't know what your base beer tastes like. Berliner is fairly delicate, and I'm pretty sure raspberries have a tradition there because prior to today's level of sanitation it could easily go very bad. Raspberries, and woodruff, would have been to mask the ill-effects of out-of-control wild fermentation. So the traditional reason to add raspberry would be to intentionally hide the beer.

Would you rather not use syrup?

06/24/11 10:58 AM  
Re: berliner weisse raspberries
I had a batch of berliner weisse that never developed enough acidity, so after several months I improvised and added a can peach puree. It was so good that I brewed the beer again, with the intent of making a peach bw. I've also made several beers with raspberries, blackberries, etc. where I have added a little lactic acid to round out the flavor. I think that helps, if done right. If I was going to make a raspberry bw I'd probably go light on the raspberries, to keep the beer light and refreshing. One can of peach puree was perfect IMO but I would go with slightly less w/ raspberries, or about 3 pounds of fresh berries. Adjust accordingly. I'd also suggest that you add just a touch of crystal malt to provide some sweetness to balance the fruit. In the second peach bw I added about 3 oz of honey malt, which I found was the perfect amount for that beer. Adding the syrup works too but will be sweeter and different, so it depends on what you're trying to make.
06/24/11 10:02 PM  
Re: berliner weisse raspberries
Yes, I've done it. I added about 4 pounds of Golden Raspberries to a BW about a year ago. Golden raspberries are quite a bit different from regular old red ones. The beer came out great. No shortage of tartness in it whatsoever. Is it traditional? Is it still a BW? I guess not. Not a single complaint about it from anyone, nothing but praise. Then again, I'm not into competitions and trying to make the same beer twice. So take it for what it's worth.
06/26/11 01:48 PM  
Re: berliner weisse raspberries
I agree with Steve that you definitely will need to get a base for what the beer tastes like first before adding any fruit. Is is sour/tart enough on its own? Are there any off aromas/flavors created from your process used to make the berliner? etc....

Once you are knowleadgeable about your base beer then decide on your fruit. If using straight lacto to ferment the beer, then it might take time to become as acidic as necessary for the style. If you are brewing this for a competition then that also matters. The fruit addition will need to be noticeable and able to be picked out of the beer, but now so much that it overwhelms the base style and doesn't let that shine through as well.

If you are leaning towards raspberries (which I think would make a delicious addition) be aware they are very tart and will change the color of your beer slightly as well. Since they are a fairly "strong" flavored fruit you might want to start with 1#/gallon. I would rack on to the fruit in secondary and let it sit a minimum of 1 mos before checking for taste. Be sure to save me a bottle!!

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