So the Cranberry Wit is done and kegged – after 10 days in the primary, and 14 days on 600g of frozen/crushed cranberries. Its hard to capture in a picture, but this beer is pink. Even the head has a hint of pink!
This beer did not turn out as I was expecting, based on the cranberry beers I have tried and read about. I was expecting that astringent flavour that only cranberries create, without much additional berry character – indeed, that seems to be the dominant flavour I’ve experienced in other cranberry beers. That is present in this beer, but its mild and in the background. I’m not sure if its the yeast or the cranberries, but there is a notable berry note to the flavour.
Quite to my happiness, I did not make the beer I was expecting – I made something better!
Appearance: Pink-toned beer with a light pink head. The head retention is not as good as I’d normally expect of a wheat beer, but I suspect this may be due to the cranberries (cranberry seeds have a lot of oil).
Aroma: Bready, like a wheat beer should be. A lot of fruity notes – whether from the yeast or the cranberries I cannot say.
Flavour: Front of the sip is your typical wheat-beer breadiness layered with fruity flavours. There is a bit of a sweetness to the beer as well. This fades into the typical cranberry astringency, with the sweetness coming out a little more. The aftertaste is a mild cranberry astringency and a fair bit of fruitiness. Hop bitterness and flavour is present, but in the background.
Mouthfeel: This is a very refreshing beer – it whets the mouth and the astringency of the cranberry acting more to balance the whetting sweetness then it acts to dry the mouth. The body is a little thin for a wheat beer – perhaps due to my use of an overnight mash – but works well with the otherwise very refreshing character of this beer.
Overall: This has not been one of my better summers of brewing – I had my first dumper in nearly a decade, my brewing output is less than half of normal, I have a sour solera project planned that I just cannot get off the ground, and if that wasn’t enough – the weather this summer has been shit. This beer makes up for all of that – better tasting than planned, and perfect for the odd day when we actually get a bit of sun. This beer is definetly going into the rebrew pile! If I could change one thing it would be…nothing!