Wednesday, June 22, 2011

Blueberry Pale Ale

Blueberries are in season. I've been waiting to make a blueberry beer for some time now and when I saw Harris Teeter was running a buy 1 get 2 free deal I knew it was time to put things in motion. The other blogger and I happened to be visiting my parents last weekend so we stopped by Home Sweet Homebrew in downtown Philadelphia to pick up some brewing ingredients. My brew kit was a Christmas gift from Home Sweet Homebrew, but I had never been to the shop. The place was awesome, everything that a home brewing shop should be. George Hummel and Nancy Rigberg, the proprietors of the store, couldn't have been nicer. Nancy even took the time to work with me to create this blueberry pale ale recipe and write down some blueberry specific brewing instructions. I plan on brewing this weekend and will report back later in the summer

  • 8 lbs pale malt extract
  • 1 lb US Breiss Caravinne grains crushed (24degL)
  • 1 lb US Breiss Carapils grains crushed (1.5degL)
  • 2 oz Mt Hood Hops
  • 1 package Wyeast 1056 American Ale Yeast (Activator)
  • 1 tsp Irish Moss
  • 1 campden tablet
  • 5 lbs fresh frozen blueberries (7 pints)
  • 1-2 oz Blueberry Beer Flavoring (brand Crosby & Baker)
  • 5 oz corn sugar


  • Sanitize anything that will come in contact with the wort in every step
  • Activate the yeast
  • Put Caravienne and Carapils in a grain bag and steep in 3-5 gallons (as much as your brewpot can take while saving room for the malt) of 150-160 degree water for 30 minutes
  • Remove grains (let the water drain from the bag do not squeeze) and bring mixture to a boil, remove from the heat source and slowly add 4 lbs extract, return to boil
  • When rolling boil is achieved add 1 oz of the Mt. Hood hops and set timer for 60 minutes
  • Be sure to keep an eye on the pot for boil overs
  • At the last  15 minutes of the boil add the remaining 4 lbs of extract, 1 tsp of Irish Moss and the remaining 1 oz of Mt. Hood hops
  • After 60 minutes of boil remove brewpot from heat and cool in an ice bath until the wort is 75 degrees (we did not add aroma hops because we dont want it to clash with the blueberry)
  • Rack the wort into your primary fermenter, top off with additional water to make 5 gallons, pitch the yeast and seal the fermenter
  • Ferment in primary at 65-70 degrees for 3-4 days
  • The day before racking to your secondary fermenter prepare the blueberries. Thaw and slightly crush the berries, add 1 crushed campden tablet and let stand for 24 hours
  • Put blueberries in the secondary fermenter and rack on top of the blueberries
  • Fermentation is finished when the Hydrometer reading is the same for 2 consecutive days. This will take longer than normal beers because the yeast have to work their way through all of the fermentable sugars in the blueberries
  • For bottling bring 1 cup of water to a boil and disolve corn sugar, add disolved corn sugar and 1oz of blueberry extract to bottling bucket, rack from secondary to the bottling bucket
  • The blueberry extract is purely for aroma purposes, if you want more aroma add some more extract a little at a time. Remember: its easy to add more, its impossible to take some out
  • Bottle and let condition for 2 weeks.

1 comment:

  1. Chuck! This is fantastic - I've been wondering what to get my brew-loving fella for his birthday. I wonder if you have any suggestions for first-time kits and beer recipes? Let me know!