Thursday, May 6, 2010

Summer Time Orange Beer

It's almost the summer. What do people really crave when it comes to summer drinking? Something that's fresh, easy drinking and doesn't knock you on your ass after two beers. So, here's a great recipe that you can tweak to your own flavors. It's really easy and it pleases the crowd and I think you'll be really surprised at what's involved with it.

Summer Orange Beer (extract only) 5 gallons; if you wish to do all grain just substitute in 8 lbs of 2 row (mash at 150 for 30 minutes and sparge).

6 lbs extra light malt (dry or liquid)
fermentis us-05, wlp 001 or wyeast 1056.
2 fresh oranges with the zest peeled only; add after primary fermentation for 1-2 weeks. The orange zest will provide some bitterness and a lot of orange flavoring.

Just boil up the malt in 2.5 gallons of water for 20 minutes, cool down (below 80 degrees) and top up with another 2.5 gallons of water, add yeast and after primary fermentation add the zest.

Primary ferment for 7-10 days, after primary fermentation is done add your zest. Don't worry about sanitizing it or getting any kind of funk from it. You'll be fine just adding it fresh straight to the fermenter. Let sit for another week to two weeks, sample if you want. Then siphon and bottle or keg.

Serve slightly chilled with a rind of orange peel and you'll enjoy this beer on a hot summer day.

I had doubts about this beer because I didn't use any hops for bittering or flavoring. However, you just have to try this because I think the hops would really get in the way of the bitterness that the orange peel provides and the flavor that the orange really allows to rip through your palate.

Note: You could also substitute lemon peel if you want.