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Recipe: mlavin / Holiday Cranberry Lambic (revision #5)

  • Started Brewing: Oct 16, 2011
  • Original Gravity: 1.070
  • Finished Brewing: Dec 04, 2011
  • Final Gravity: 1.030
  • Alcohol by Volume: 6.3%
  • Would Make Again?: No  

Final Review

This was my first real attempt at a fruit beer. I wasn't really going for something sweet and fruity so I'm a little disappointed in how this came out. It's not bad but it's not what I wanted. I was hoping that the more of the tart character of the cranberry would come out but it didn't.

I probably won't make this again because it's just too much work for a beer I'm not that happy with. If I did make it again I would probably only put the 3 lbs of cranberry in the secondary and I might pitch more yeast to help handle some of the sugar from the cranberry.

Taste Notes

Very sweet and a little tart. It's hard to place the taste of cranberry exactly but it has a distinct fruit character. The typically lambic flavors do not really come through.

Notes From Oct. 16, 2011 (Brewing)

Gravity Reading: 1.070

Pretty successful brew day. Came out a little short of 5 gallons with a higher gravity than expected. Adding the cranberries at flameout probably wasn't the best idea. Pouring out the bag into a pot of boiling liquid was pretty terrifying. Most of the cranberries came open which made for some difficulty transferring into the primary because the skins were clogging the tubing.

Notes From Nov. 5, 2011 (Moving to Secondary)

Gravity Reading: 1.022

Moved to the secondary and added the additional cranberries and pectin enzyme. If the bubbles from the fermentor are any indication then it seems to still be active. It was bubbling around every 30 seconds or less. Hope to see the gravity come down a little more in the next couple weeks. Cranberry taste isn't yet there but it was slightly sour.

Notes From Nov. 20, 2011 (Bottling/Kegging)

Gravity Reading: 1.030

Bottled up today and took a taste. The cranberries in the secondary added a lot of sweetness and that shows in the gravity. There is also a noticeable pink color in the beer along with the cranberry smell. Right now the sweetness it pretty over powering. I'm hoping some time in the bottles will mellow out the flavors because right now it's not very drinkable.