Apricot Honey Wheat Ale

This is a hodgepodge of a few recipes. I made my own apricot purée from fresh fruit. Hope it turns out ok! I made this one with help from my wife.

Results

Overview
  • Starting gravity
    • 1.059
  • Final gravity
    • 1.015
  • ABV
    • ~5.8%

The first bottle that I tasted was the last bottle that I filled and had nearly an inch of sediment settled in the bottom of the bottle.

  • Very tart flavor up front
    Maybe the apricots sat in the fermenter for too long or maybe the tartness is due to the amount of puree trapped in this first bottle? The fruit flavor comes across as pretty obviously containing extract.
  • A slightly bitter taste at the end
    This is consistent with the early wort tastings and part of the reason why we added all 4oz of extract.

Update July 10, 2013: The second bottle for opened is from the middle of the bottling process and has much less sediment. It is less tart and tastes much better overall! Good apricot aroma and not overpowering with the apricot. Much better

Update August 17, 2013: Different bottles have been pretty hit-or-miss. I think that we didn’t let it settle enough after transferring to the bottling bucket–especially because we kept disturbing it by adding more apricot extract and re-stirring after each addition. We were probably too impatient.

Recipe

Malt
  • 6.6 lbs Bavarian Wheat liquid malt extract
  • 1 lb US 2-row pale malt
  • 1 lb honey malt
  • 1 lb CaraVienna malt
Hops
  • 0.5 oz Amarillo
    • 60 minutes
  • 0.5 oz Citra
    • 60 minutes
  • 0.25 oz Amarillo
    • 20 minutes
  • 0.25 oz Citra
    • 20 minutes
  • 0.25 oz Amaraillo
    • 8 minutes
  • 0.25 oz Citra
    • 8 minutes
Yeast
  • Wyeast 1056 American Ale
Other
  • ~3 lbs fresh apricot
  • 4 oz apricot extract

I wish I had used less of the CaraVienna malt (maybe only 0.25-0.5 lbs). It would have kept the color lighter and I’m worried that the Honey malt will make it too sweet/caramelly. (Update: This wasn’t a problem after all. Too bitter if anything)

For the yeast I also considered 2565 Kolsch (for fruitiness) and 1010 American Wheat (but didn’t want any banana/clove).

Brewing Notes

Timeline
  • Brewed
    • June 9, 2013
  • Apricot puree added
    • June 16, 2013
  • Bottled
    • June 26, 2013
  • Tasted
    • July 9, 2013

Gravity: 1.059

  • The wort is a very pretty color!
  • Very little aroma and bitter
    The wort has little to no aroma; I probably had less than the planned 0.25oz each for the final hop addition. The wort also tastes more bitter than I expected (especially the lingering flavor), but could just be because it’s still wort.
  • Apricot purée
    We added the apricot puree after a week, but could have done it as early as 3 days. I had expected that the sugar from the apricots would cause the wort to start fermenting again, but I never noticed any bubbles or activity.
  • Apricot extract
    We tasted the wort before bottling and it had big apricot aroma but just a little apricot flavor up front. We started by adding 2oz of Apricot Extract (of a 4oz bottle) and let it settle before tasting. The extract made a noticeable difference: sweeter and more balanced.

    We ended up adding the full 4oz (one ounce at a time). You can taste the extract more than I wanted (almost like Pyramid Apricot Ale) but we put it all in to help balance the unexpected bitterness of the beer.

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