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Offline ntz08

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Odd ingredient ideas for an Iron Brewer challenge
« on: February 08, 2018, 08:38:44 PM »
My homebrew club is doing a couple of competitions this year. One is brewing to style in a bracket style tournament with H2H matchups.

And the other is something like an iron chef type of thing where we'll pick an unusual ingredient to showcase and let folks figure out the best style and way to make that happen. We're thinking that we'll eliminate half of the field each time based on popular vote of a panel or something like that.

Anyway, I thought I'd throw it out there for suggestions on ingredients. We're probably going to start out on the simpler side and then get progressively more difficult/exotic.

I was thinking perhaps a seasonal/winter fruit or veg or some kind of spice/herb, but would love to hear your ideas.

Offline emerge

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Re: Odd ingredient ideas for an Iron Brewer challenge
« Reply #1 on: February 08, 2018, 10:14:24 PM »
I feel like Gruit as a style gives you carte blanche for adjuncts, but I think it omits hops.

Mushrooms - you can get a lot of dried varieties, a local brewer has been using candy cap. Scratch did a hen-of-the-woods wee heavy.
Toasted tree bark - surprisingly great, hickory and cherry especially
Sage - BFM Le Meule is still a standout beer imo
Rocks - steinbier, used to caramelize sugars

Maybe some kind of tropical fruit for the irony factor? :mellow:

Offline howardf

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Re: Odd ingredient ideas for an Iron Brewer challenge
« Reply #2 on: February 09, 2018, 07:25:31 AM »
Mushrooms - you can get a lot of dried varieties, a local brewer has been using candy cap. Scratch did a hen-of-the-woods wee heavy.

pwoods and crew did a candy cap beer at their place, and that shit is amazing.

Offline wisconsinbeer1

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Re: Odd ingredient ideas for an Iron Brewer challenge
« Reply #3 on: February 09, 2018, 08:34:37 AM »
On basic brewing they talked to someone who brewed a beer with powdered pigs blood.
« Last Edit: February 09, 2018, 08:39:59 AM by wisconsinbeer1 »
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Offline emerge

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Re: Odd ingredient ideas for an Iron Brewer challenge
« Reply #4 on: February 09, 2018, 09:48:23 AM »
Mushrooms - you can get a lot of dried varieties, a local brewer has been using candy cap. Scratch did a hen-of-the-woods wee heavy.

pwoods and crew did a candy cap beer at their place, and that shit is amazing.
Definitely interesting, they have a maple flavor almost. I noticed a little waxiness in the local beer I had.

Offline ntz08

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Re: Odd ingredient ideas for an Iron Brewer challenge
« Reply #5 on: February 11, 2018, 05:11:20 PM »
Thanks for your suggestions. Will let you know what we roll with each round.

I suggested mint so far and also thinking about both beets and mustard as possibilities.

I definitely want to do a mushroom brew but think that might be too much for the first round.

Offline emerge

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Re: Odd ingredient ideas for an Iron Brewer challenge
« Reply #6 on: February 11, 2018, 07:35:47 PM »
Beets are good, fairly polarizing I guess but very tasty and unique in a brew.
Some of the better ones I can remember were lacto based sour ales.

Offline emerge

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Re: Odd ingredient ideas for an Iron Brewer challenge
« Reply #7 on: February 12, 2018, 09:18:25 AM »
You could always go full Jester King... :mellow:

Quote
Örter i Mörker was brewed with well water, malted barley, hops, woodear mushrooms, dried dill, dried caraway seeds, and fresh pine needles. It was fermented with our mixed culture and aged in 225L oak barrels formerly containing akvavit, a Scandinavian spirit flavored with caraway or dill.
This actually sounds really good to me. :banned:

Offline Tip Top

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Re: Odd ingredient ideas for an Iron Brewer challenge
« Reply #8 on: February 12, 2018, 12:51:15 PM »

Offline emerge

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Re: Odd ingredient ideas for an Iron Brewer challenge
« Reply #9 on: February 12, 2018, 02:15:50 PM »



Offline Jaysus

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Re: Odd ingredient ideas for an Iron Brewer challenge
« Reply #10 on: February 19, 2018, 11:23:28 AM »
Breakfast cereal

Offline skinnyguy

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Re: Odd ingredient ideas for an Iron Brewer challenge
« Reply #11 on: March 21, 2018, 03:27:42 PM »
Caraway is definitely a good one to separate the good from the bad.

Mugwort
Cardamom
Sweet potato
Cucumber
Radish
Lemon Basil
Roasted corn
Pecans
Cashews

Offline ntz08

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Re: Odd ingredient ideas for an Iron Brewer challenge
« Reply #12 on: March 28, 2018, 11:34:44 AM »
First ingredient: mint

about 12 brewers (or teams) signed up for this and have about 3 months to come up with the best way to showcase mint in a beer.

initially thought there would be high% of mint chocolate stouts, but i talked with a few people last night and most seemed to be thinking of a different approach


Offline Westside Threat

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Re: Odd ingredient ideas for an Iron Brewer challenge
« Reply #13 on: April 13, 2018, 04:29:49 PM »

Deconstruct a popular tea (Celestial Seasonings) and use those ingredients in the beer.  Tension tamer, sleepy time, etc.  Everyone is familiar with those teas and will be familiar with the profile.
 Or, pay the upcharge and buy a few boxes of tea bags and use those.

Other random ideas here
https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Gruit
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Re: Odd ingredient ideas for an Iron Brewer challenge
« Reply #14 on: April 13, 2018, 04:37:24 PM »
First ingredient: mint

about 12 brewers (or teams) signed up for this and have about 3 months to come up with the best way to showcase mint in a beer.

initially thought there would be high% of mint chocolate stouts, but i talked with a few people last night and most seemed to be thinking of a different approach

Could go dish/drink based.  Mint Julep or Mojito, soak some oak chips in rum.  Perhaps go savory with coucous or tabbouleh theme. 

If you go stout, maybe a golden stout that is mint heavy. 
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Offline ntz08

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Re: Odd ingredient ideas for an Iron Brewer challenge
« Reply #15 on: April 19, 2018, 01:19:41 PM »
So i decided that i want to

Could go dish/drink based.  Mint Julep or Mojito, soak some oak chips in rum.  Perhaps go savory with coucous or tabbouleh theme. 

If you go stout, maybe a golden stout that is mint heavy. 

yeah, i was thinking along these lines and decided i want to try to do something with cucumber, lime and mint as the flavor combination.

From there, I started thinking about style and I've settled on two different approaches: Saison and Gose

I've got a solid saison recipe and since i'm planning to do the lime/cuke/mint additions in the secondary, the only real tweak i'm planning for the recipe is to use lime peel instead of, or in addition to the sweet orange/lemon peel.

I've never made a gose before and while i'm up for the challenge, I'm not sure i want to do an entire 10 gal batch if it goes sideways.  Since there seems to be good overlap with the grain bills and etc, I've been thinking about making a wit and then splitting the batch before the salt addition. Not exactly sure of the best way to do that just yet but I've still got some time to figure it out.




Offline emerge

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Re: Odd ingredient ideas for an Iron Brewer challenge
« Reply #16 on: April 19, 2018, 03:59:18 PM »
So i decided that i want to

Could go dish/drink based.  Mint Julep or Mojito, soak some oak chips in rum.  Perhaps go savory with coucous or tabbouleh theme. 

If you go stout, maybe a golden stout that is mint heavy. 

yeah, i was thinking along these lines and decided i want to try to do something with cucumber, lime and mint as the flavor combination.

From there, I started thinking about style and I've settled on two different approaches: Saison and Gose

I've got a solid saison recipe and since i'm planning to do the lime/cuke/mint additions in the secondary, the only real tweak i'm planning for the recipe is to use lime peel instead of, or in addition to the sweet orange/lemon peel.

I've never made a gose before and while i'm up for the challenge, I'm not sure i want to do an entire 10 gal batch if it goes sideways.  Since there seems to be good overlap with the grain bills and etc, I've been thinking about making a wit and then splitting the batch before the salt addition. Not exactly sure of the best way to do that just yet but I've still got some time to figure it out.
A cucumber & lime gose sounds really good. Not enough cucumber beers out there, imho they can be super refreshing.

Offline ntz08

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Re: Odd ingredient ideas for an Iron Brewer challenge
« Reply #17 on: April 19, 2018, 04:17:23 PM »
yeah, if i were really confident, i'd just make the gose because it all seems like it would work really well together. I'm just not certain what to expect from the lacto.  Hedging with the saison mostly because i know that fermentation well and it seems like it should all work.

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Re: Odd ingredient ideas for an Iron Brewer challenge
« Reply #18 on: June 26, 2018, 03:02:10 PM »
The gose came out really well and that's what i'm putting into the competition, which is happening tonight.

I think the saison is also good, although i may have left it on the cukes a day or two too long

one interesting thing to note is that i found the lime peel to be rather potent. i think i used 2oz for the 10 gal batch and didn't think it needed any additional lime flavoring.

Will update after our meeting tonight.

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Re: Odd ingredient ideas for an Iron Brewer challenge
« Reply #19 on: June 26, 2018, 09:02:11 PM »
good luck
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Offline ntz08

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Re: Odd ingredient ideas for an Iron Brewer challenge
« Reply #20 on: June 27, 2018, 11:57:26 AM »
my brew took 4th out of ten, so I'll be moving on to the next challenge: peppercorns (meh)

Feedback was that the cucumber was a bit too strong and slightly overpowered the mint, which I could see. And also, that there was a flavor faintly reminiscent of pickles.

Not sure i entirely agree with that one, but with the cukes, acidic pH and salt in there, it does make sense. They also found my brew the most refreshing of the submissions, which was a big part of what i was going for with this.

Recipe seems like a keeper and will be really great with a couple tweaks. Also looking forward to making a much simpler gose

Offline emerge

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Re: Odd ingredient ideas for an Iron Brewer challenge
« Reply #21 on: June 27, 2018, 12:31:14 PM »
my brew took 4th out of ten, so I'll be moving on to the next challenge: peppercorns (meh)

Feedback was that the cucumber was a bit too strong and slightly overpowered the mint, which I could see. And also, that there was a flavor faintly reminiscent of pickles.

Not sure i entirely agree with that one, but with the cukes, acidic pH and salt in there, it does make sense. They also found my brew the most refreshing of the submissions, which was a big part of what i was going for with this.

Recipe seems like a keeper and will be really great with a couple tweaks. Also looking forward to making a much simpler gose
Congrats! :thumbup:

"Pickle" sounds kind of like a free association based on the above. Fresh cukes taste earthy, pickles taste like the added ingredients.
I love cucumber in drinks, it's super refreshing.

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Re: Odd ingredient ideas for an Iron Brewer challenge
« Reply #22 on: June 27, 2018, 07:08:02 PM »
We're congratulating people for 4th place now?   :rolleyes:
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Offline ntz08

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Re: Odd ingredient ideas for an Iron Brewer challenge
« Reply #23 on: June 28, 2018, 08:06:44 AM »
We're congratulating people for 4th place now?   :rolleyes:

lol. i felt pretty confident i'd be in the top half and moving on. and honestly, i feel more pride in being able to make a decent gose on my first attempt than i do for coming in 4/10.

since there were 10 entries, our panel did the judging BoS style and from the feedback i was given, a little more mint (or less cucumber) in the taste would have easily put my beer in the top 3. i did try 1st (shandy) and 2nd (pale ale) and didn't think they were significantly more minty in flavor than my beer, but my palate was not at its best by then.



Offline emerge

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Re: Odd ingredient ideas for an Iron Brewer challenge
« Reply #24 on: June 28, 2018, 11:10:49 AM »
We're congratulating people for 4th place now?   :rolleyes:

lol. i felt pretty confident i'd be in the top half and moving on. and honestly, i feel more pride in being able to make a decent gose on my first attempt than i do for coming in 4/10.

since there were 10 entries, our panel did the judging BoS style and from the feedback i was given, a little more mint (or less cucumber) in the taste would have easily put my beer in the top 3. i did try 1st (shandy) and 2nd (pale ale) and didn't think they were significantly more minty in flavor than my beer, but my palate was not at its best by then.
I'm surprised a chocolate mint stout didn't take 1st. Curious what else was in the shandy?

Offline ntz08

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Re: Odd ingredient ideas for an Iron Brewer challenge
« Reply #25 on: June 28, 2018, 02:09:59 PM »
I think there was a "white chocolate" porterish style beer but i didn't get a chance to try it. Not sure anyone actually made a stout, which sure seems like a missed opportunity, though i wouldn't have made one anyway.

it was a little disorganized at first because we met at a place where 2 former club members had separately started a nanobrewery and craft distillery, instead of at our usual monthly meeting place. drew a really good crowd but the space was a little cramped and people were showing  up late. along with that and my other meeting duties, i wasn't able to pay much attention to the competition.

i want to say the shandy was lemon or limeade but i don't really remember. we usually put that stuff up on our site, so i should be able to find out


Offline ntz08

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Re: Odd ingredient ideas for an Iron Brewer challenge
« Reply #26 on: June 29, 2018, 02:22:29 PM »
These were the top 5 in the mint round

#1 -  Lime Mint Shandy

#2 -  Lemon Drop Pale Ale w/mint and lemon

#3 -  Vanilla Mint Cream Ale

#4 -  Mint Cucumber Lime Gose

#5 -  Creme de Menthe (Mint Cream Ale)

Offline emerge

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Re: Odd ingredient ideas for an Iron Brewer challenge
« Reply #27 on: June 29, 2018, 03:13:14 PM »
These were the top 5 in the mint round

#1 -  Lime Mint Shandy

#2 -  Lemon Drop Pale Ale w/mint and lemon

#3 -  Vanilla Mint Cream Ale

#4 -  Mint Cucumber Lime Gose

#5 -  Creme de Menthe (Mint Cream Ale)

First 2 don't sound bad at all. Mint cream ales are definitely not my jam. Seems like an ingredient that would be easy to overdo, but what do I know. Less is more sometimes. :shrug:

Offline Jaysus

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Re: Odd ingredient ideas for an Iron Brewer challenge
« Reply #28 on: July 23, 2018, 11:00:59 AM »
my brew took 4th out of ten, so I'll be moving on to the next challenge: peppercorns (meh)

I did a pink peppercorn saison several years ago that was pretty damned awesome.  They are a much different animal than normal peppercorns.

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Re: Odd ingredient ideas for an Iron Brewer challenge
« Reply #29 on: July 24, 2018, 10:45:49 AM »
my buddy and i took 2 different approaches to this one. while researching peppercorns, we came across sichuan peppercorns and decided we wanted to try to use them.

he went with a rye ipa and then added the peppercorns at the end of the boil. We just tasted it and he added more hops and sichuan peppercorns post-fermentation.

i wanted to get some other peppercorn flavors in the mix, and decided to do a lemon pepper witbier, using lemon peel, lemondrop hops, green & black peppercorns (had trouble finding pink in the stores), the sichuan peppercorns and then fermented with 3711 French Saison, which has an estery, peppery, citrusy profile. we just brewed it over the weekend, so we'll see how it goes.

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Re: Odd ingredient ideas for an Iron Brewer challenge
« Reply #30 on: July 24, 2018, 11:01:23 AM »
sichuan peppercorns

He could name it "Comfortably Numb" :bowtie:

The lemon pepper witbier sounds interesting, especially with peppercorns in place of coriander. Wonder if it will turn out more like a hazy saison.

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Re: Odd ingredient ideas for an Iron Brewer challenge
« Reply #31 on: July 24, 2018, 11:20:41 AM »
sichuan peppercorns

He could name it "Comfortably Numb" :bowtie:

The lemon pepper witbier sounds interesting, especially with peppercorns in place of coriander. Wonder if it will turn out more like a hazy saison.

yeah, it doesn't take much to numb your mouth with them for a few minutes if you just chew one or two. really an odd sensation to go along with the citrusy/lemony flavor. oddly enough the other night i had some takeout from a local place that has excellent sichuan food. ordered an entree that i've had a few times before and immediately recognized the flavor of the peppers.

we'll see about the wit. it's definitely a witbier base, with plenty of wheat and oats, and it's one of the recommended styles for 3711 on the wyeast site.

i've used 3711 before but not for several years as i normally prefer the 3724 belgian saison yeast and ramping up the temp during fermentation to dry out my saisons.

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Re: Odd ingredient ideas for an Iron Brewer challenge
« Reply #32 on: July 24, 2018, 12:08:37 PM »
sichuan peppercorns

He could name it "Comfortably Numb" :bowtie:

The lemon pepper witbier sounds interesting, especially with peppercorns in place of coriander. Wonder if it will turn out more like a hazy saison.

yeah, it doesn't take much to numb your mouth with them for a few minutes if you just chew one or two. really an odd sensation to go along with the citrusy/lemony flavor. oddly enough the other night i had some takeout from a local place that has excellent sichuan food. ordered an entree that i've had a few times before and immediately recognized the flavor of the peppers.

we'll see about the wit. it's definitely a witbier base, with plenty of wheat and oats, and it's one of the recommended styles for 3711 on the wyeast site.

i've used 3711 before but not for several years as i normally prefer the 3724 belgian saison yeast and ramping up the temp during fermentation to dry out my saisons.
Is the 3711 less phenolic than the 3724?

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Re: Odd ingredient ideas for an Iron Brewer challenge
« Reply #33 on: July 24, 2018, 12:54:01 PM »
i've never really done a true side by side. most times i've actually mixed strains as i always seemed to have some aging packs of danstar belle saison lying around.

but i thought the main difference had more to do with the fermentation temps for the particular strains, with the higher temps producing more esters in general, and the overly phenolic character from pitching too warm or raising temps too quickly.

this might actually be the first time i've actually used 3711 by itself and i'm planning to to stay at the lower end of the ferm temps as i don't need to increase the attenuation. but the yeast is still a beast and the final product might be more like a spiced saison, just not overly dry and with some additional body. i think i'd be OK with that too.

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Re: Odd ingredient ideas for an Iron Brewer challenge
« Reply #34 on: August 28, 2019, 12:31:53 PM »
For our iron brewer challenge this year, the  ingredients were

Round 1: Ginger

Round 2: Smoked Malt

Finals: Cantaloupe


Crushed it in the first round with a Summer Ale w/ ginger and a bit of rye that was really nice and will definitely be re-brewed with only minor tweaks.

Followed that up with a couple different attempts at smoked beers which I'm not at all a fan of. There's a local brewery that does a really nice smoked helles which a few other people tried to emulate. Made a smoked kolsch that more or less had the balance I was looking for but wasn't quite as crisp as it could have been. May try that one again at some point. Was also worried that there wasn't enough smoke, so we amped it up and made a smoked stout fermented with a kveik strain and used some tropical hops to play up those flavors. Surprisingly, it came together and worked fairly well.

So now we've got a couple different batches and styles that have been or will be cantalouped at some point. Some are pretty straightforward, others are a bit more adventurous. Finals to be judged at the end of SEP

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Re: Odd ingredient ideas for an Iron Brewer challenge
« Reply #35 on: August 28, 2019, 02:01:03 PM »
My fresh Columbus have a cantaloupe/melon flavor characteristic, but combined with actual fruit that would probably be obliterated. What styles did you brew or are you at liberty to say yet?

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Re: Odd ingredient ideas for an Iron Brewer challenge
« Reply #36 on: August 28, 2019, 03:15:19 PM »
My fresh Columbus have a cantaloupe/melon flavor characteristic, but combined with actual fruit that would probably be obliterated. What styles did you brew or are you at liberty to say yet?

did a basic wheat/wit grainbill and split the batch to ferment with different yeasts. half with lallemand munich and half with T-58. The american wheat seems like it might take the cantaloupe more readily at least at this point. planning to juice, homogenize and then add it at packaging. not sure what I'll try with the belgian half. splashed a bit of cantaloupe juice in a sample and the spicy/peppery esters didn't blend with the fruit as well as i had hoped

then we did an IPA using green bullet hops. I don't see many descriptions for them that include melon in the flavor profile but we used them in an APA and it came out with very prominent melon flavors. For this batch, there were pieces of cantaloupe in the mash and then the juice was added to the boil. We also split that batch and are fermenting half with S-05 and the other half with the Gulo strain from omega to try to give it the Brut-ish character.

Something ought to work out, even if it just ends up being the boring Am wheat

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Re: Odd ingredient ideas for an Iron Brewer challenge
« Reply #37 on: August 29, 2019, 11:57:06 AM »
My fresh Columbus have a cantaloupe/melon flavor characteristic, but combined with actual fruit that would probably be obliterated. What styles did you brew or are you at liberty to say yet?

did a basic wheat/wit grainbill and split the batch to ferment with different yeasts. half with lallemand munich and half with T-58. The american wheat seems like it might take the cantaloupe more readily at least at this point. planning to juice, homogenize and then add it at packaging. not sure what I'll try with the belgian half. splashed a bit of cantaloupe juice in a sample and the spicy/peppery esters didn't blend with the fruit as well as i had hoped

then we did an IPA using green bullet hops. I don't see many descriptions for them that include melon in the flavor profile but we used them in an APA and it came out with very prominent melon flavors. For this batch, there were pieces of cantaloupe in the mash and then the juice was added to the boil. We also split that batch and are fermenting half with S-05 and the other half with the Gulo strain from omega to try to give it the Brut-ish character.

Something ought to work out, even if it just ends up being the boring Am wheat
Brut IPA sounds cool too, hope it turns out well! Good luck :cheers: