091 Brew Masters workshop 3/10/2011

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Today we have focused on the difference of various sugar concentrations (5% x 2.5% (w/v)) dark rich sugar) on the final flavor of the beverage. This experiment is done to find out if we can brew a light sparkling beverage compared to the more heavy ones which we did up to now (5-10% (w/v)). Two ferments which we prepared (2x Vc (culture volume) = 5 l) are based on kefir culture (3% (v/v)) as inoculum (active probiotic culture), dark rich sugar (2.5% and 5% (w/v) respectively) and rooibos mix slunce v buši (0.2% (w/v). The ferment is going to be left to ferment at room temperature for 4-6 days depending on the speed of fermentation and after that it will be harvested, flavored if necessary, bottled, left to secondary ferment for 1-2 days and finally let to mature for 1-2 weeks at 4-7°C. The final product should have a medium spark and in case of 2.5% sugar (beverage I.) content very light rooibos mix flavor with molasses background being quite light in color. The more concentrated 5% sugar (beverage II.) beverage should have quite heavy molasses flavor with dark color. If we get these results we could do more experiments of this type. The idea behind is to lower the amount of the sugar because of both health benefits (diabetic issues) and also the influence of the sugar source on the flavor. The dark rich sugar is I think an ideal choice for this because it has naturally strong flavor which is easy to distinguish. If we therefore succeed with this one, the honey and lighter sugar alternatives should be much more easy to master.


  • Ingredients

kefir culture (3% (v/v))

dark rich sugar (2.5 and 5% (w/v))

rooibos mix (0.2% (w/v))

  • Manual

- water is brought to boil and added to rooibos mix (left to steep for 15-20 min)

- rooibos mix is strained and sugar is added and mixed to dissolve

- syrup mix is diluted by cold water and now not very hot syrup is transfered to the culture vessel (5l glass demijohn)

- syrup is further diluted to roughly 90% of final volume by cold water

- kefir culture is added to the lukewarm water

- cold water is added to bring the brew to the final volume of Vc = 5 l

- brew is closed by a water lock system and let to ferment for 4-6 days at room temperature (or between 15-25°C, oscillating)

- brew is tasted and harvested ==> bottled to swing top bottles (bottles sealed)

- bottled brew is left to secondary ferment at room temperature for 1-2 days for the spark to develop (carbon dioxide)

- bottled brew is transfered to the cold environment (4-7°C) and let to mature for 1-2 weeks

- brew is periodically tasted for next 1-8 weeks