Lemon in the mash

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Lemon in the mash

Postby weedchild » Tue May 15, 2007 2:21 pm

Has anyone ever tried lemon or lemon zest in the mash? I am thinking of brewing a wheat beer with a hint of lemon flavor, and have heard that the mash might be the best place to add it. Any thoughts? Will lemon juice decrease the mash pH too much? Will zest?
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Postby akueck » Tue May 15, 2007 5:18 pm

If you add enough zest to seriously affect the pH of your mash, you've probably added too much. Juice doesn't need to go in the mash, so you don't have to worry about the pH there (juice has fermentable sugars in it already, just add it during the boil).

I think the reason you'd want to use the zest in the mash is to get the flavor extracted and then get the zest out. Boiling the zest for a long time or letting it sit in the fermenter a long time can sometimes give the beer too much bitterness from the zest. I have used bitter orange peel late in the boil, and heard advice to do the same with fresh zest. Add during the last 10-15 minutes. During the mash should also work fine though.

Lemon wheat sounds good. Let us know how it goes.
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RE: zest??

Postby wottaguy » Tue May 15, 2007 9:03 pm

Hey there!

It would probably be best to add the zest (orange, lemon....whatever..) to the last 1 minute of the boil or at flame-out at end of boil. Doing this will capture the most essence of your zest. Don't be shy with the zest...use at least an ounce of the stuff!

Good luck and please let us know what you have decided to do and how it turns out.

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Zest

Postby weedchild » Wed May 16, 2007 11:01 pm

Thanks for the tips. I have heard that the last few minutes of the boil is the best time to add zest, but I have also heard that some belgian wits add orange peel in the mash. I was hoping someone had tried it with lemon zest to report on flavor differences compared to adding it to the boil. Maybe I will be a pioneer! I wish I had the time to do a couple of small batch experiments. By the way, wish me luck, as this will be my first all-grain, after countless extract and partial mash beers. I will keep you posted.
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