Violets in beer

Discussion in 'Beginners Brewing Forum' started by Jonny the Brewer, Jun 15, 2020.

  1. Jonny the Brewer

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    HI all

    My partner loves violets so I am considering a violet flavour beer. Has anyone ever used them? I can't find any mention of them on the recipes area.

    She doesn't like sweet tasting violet, so I'm reluctant to use violet sweets, palma violets or syrup - I was considering using dried violet flowers... I wondered if anyone might have any advice a to what style of beer, and quantities for one gallon?

    Thanks

    Jonny
     
  2. BrewPatgonia

    BrewPatgonia Well-Known Member

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    Hi Jonny, Very interesting idea. I've not heard of it nor have experience with it.
    That being said, if I were trying the same.. I would lean toward making a syrup with the violet flowers, sugar and a minute amount of water, boil it hard to temp. of 222 deg. F then let it cool. I would then add this to the fermenter as a syrup. The yeast would eat the sugars anyway, so the syrup wouldn't add any sweetness to the final product... only an essence of the violets.
    the quantities are just a guess, but I do make syrups from many herbs... so an educated guess.
    I would use 4 oz (1/2 cup) of violets to 6 oz sugar and 1.5 - 2 oz water in the boil. then add all of this once it is cooled. it could be made in advance, but stored in a sealed glass container.

    I lean toward adding them to the fermenter as that would maintain the most aroma/flavor of the flower.

    I have not used violets so I don't have a good grasp of how many/much of them gives a detectable essence.

    edit.. to include, I would stick to just a very pale ale, no special grains, just a simple pilsner or pale base. to allow the flowers to have a chance to shine through.

    good luck, would be interested to know how it comes out.
     
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  3. Nosybear

    Nosybear Well-Known Member

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    I'm not familiar with violet as a flavor but I'd guess it's fairly subtle. How about a Wheat beer to showcase the flavor? American Wheat, with a very low level of hop flavor, should be a good place to start.
     
  4. J A

    J A Well-Known Member

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    Simple Kolsch or Steam Lager would be my choice. I'd use a small addition of Amarillo at 60 minutes and then whirlpool at relatively low temp with dried flowers and a little more Amarillo. Then "dry-hop" with more dried flowers (sterilized in vodka).
    The small additions of Amarillo should support the general "beeriness" in the flavor profile and give a boost to the floral components added by the violets. If you managed a strong hint of floral/violet on the nose without a potpourri "soapy" aftertaste in the flavor, it would be a winner. :)
     
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  5. Craigerrr

    Craigerrr Well-Known Member

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    I would never have guessed that Violet had a flavor...
     
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  6. J A

    J A Well-Known Member

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    Violet candy is a thing. Never tried it, though. ;)
     
  7. Jonny the Brewer

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    Yep, it does. Ever had a parma violet? Or a violet creme?
     
  8. Jonny the Brewer

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    Thanks, I like this. I would imagine the flowers might float around a bit so I assume I'd need to strain the beer before bottling?
     
  9. Craigerrr

    Craigerrr Well-Known Member

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    Nope!
     
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  10. J A

    J A Well-Known Member

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    Same as dry-hopping with whole cone hops (they're actually flowers, also). Every thing will soak up liquid and sink to the bottom. You'll need to exercise a little care when racking but shouldn't be an issue.
     
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