Les vergers Boiron: A Fruit Puree Used throughout the Brewing Business

In 2019 we launched a specialized segment titled the “Test Kitchen.” Its content was derived from within an operational brewery located in Winchester, Kentucky owned and operated by the same individuals that launched Brewer Magazine almost a decade prior. This is the continuation of product reviews involving that real-life brewing experience.

Fruited beers, sours, and ciders have become all the rage. However, using flavor adjuncts has been one of the more concerning and frustrating elements of our business.

Always utilizing local ingredients would be ideal, but when flagships are derived from flavors that aren’t year-round in your geographic region, using quality adjuncts becomes a must.

In our Test Kitchen, we use our fruited adjuncts, primarily purees for a multitude of reasons that expand daily. With a significant background of fruit-flavored beers and a growing cocktail menu, having quality fruit adjuncts has become a necessity.

In this Test Kitchen, we had the opportunity to utilize Blackberry puree from Les vergers Boiron. While typically we only use Test Kitchen products within the brewing side of the business, this puree allowed us to experiment with our new cider line as well as our cocktail menu.

“We used Les vergers Boiron blackberry puree as one of the offerings for our mimosa flights,” explained John Howard, Taproom Manager.

With our newly expanded taproom being directly next to the city Farmer’s Market, Saturday and Sunday brunch have become hits among our patrons. We offer a four-flight mimosa option using unique flavorings as well as our in-house crafted ciders.

“The puree attributed a bright, vine-fresh, natural flavor to our cocktails without being muddied down by the taste of preservatives,” Howard continued.

One of our common frustrations with adjuncts both on the brewing and cocktail side can be the addition of off-flavors within our products. While many of our patrons don’t raise an eyebrow at the off-flavor, we notice and it’s extremely frustrating. With the Les vergers Boiron we didn’t have that experience. The color, smell and flavor was extremely authentic and proved to be the top-of-the-line product we desired.

“Our guests really enjoyed how organically the marriage between orange juice, champagne, and the puree occurred. They were even buying bottles to go,” Howard said.

Following the use in our cocktail menu, we added roughly 36 pounds of the blackberry puree into our new cider design. With its pH at 3.5, we spent more time marrying the puree with our cider base pH as well as how we manipulated our water additions from our HLT. Typically we use lactic acid within our HTL to adjust our base pH before mash, but without the mash and knowing exactly how the puree would manipulate our end product, we knew exactly where we wanted our water pH before mixture.

Les vergers Boiron sent along a detailed explanation of its puree. The storage instructions, chemical characteristics, sensory profile, microbiological characteristics, nutritional information, allergens, and regulations make the usage of the blackberry puree a simple addition to any product.

Post-fermentation the puree flavor held strong. The cider base mixed well with the puree and maintained an authentic color and flavor without any of the frustrating alternate flavors.

What we’ve learned to love about Les vergers Boiron has been the authentic flavor and vibrant color. While some breweries want flavor without a color adjustment, we enjoy the flavor with a vibrant color adjustment to catch the eye of our patron.

Lastly, as a brewery with multiple locations in the same town, shipping can sometimes be frustrating for vendors. Les vergers Boiron was extremely easy to work with. They responded quickly and would answer questions about the unique flavors we were considering. We went with the blackberry mainly because of its usage versatility within our entire company. However, knowing how well it was balanced and easy to work with, we’ll definitely be using more unique flavorings soon.

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