Building on its successful seasonal Fruit for Fermentation program, Oregon Fruit Products LLC sent word of its limited-release flavor for winter 2017: gooseberry puree.
The velvet-smooth puree consists of 100 percent gooseberries, with no added sugar, preservatives or additives. Like the gooseberry itself, the puree is tart in flavor with a high acidity and a light green color.
As is the case with many of the Fruit for Fermentation products, gooseberry puree was developed by request from the company’s current brewing customers. Since Oregon Fruit has been sourcing and processing the gooseberries for decades for its canned fruit division, creating custom puree with the same fruit for brewing was a natural progression for the company.
“From craft beers to sour beers to mead to kombucha, we’re seeing an increase in demand for fruit purees in the entire fermented beverage industry, which is why we’ve broadened our business category from Fruit for Brewing to Fruit for Fermentation,” said Chris Hodge, director of sales for brewing at Oregon Fruit Products. “The fun really begins when we release the product and get to see and taste what our customers create with it.”
Oregon Fruit’s gooseberry puree is now available in a 42-pound bag-in-box. The product is certified kosher, made in the U.S.A., non-GMO, gluten-free and vegetarian. Oregon Fruit Products does not use, nor does it allow, any of the eight major allergens (milk, eggs, peanuts, tree nuts, fish, shellfish, soy and wheat) in the products or processing areas.
What styles are best?
Hodge recommends looking to Europe for gooseberry-infused brewing inspiration, suggesting classic styles such as Belgian witbier, German weisse, gose, Munich helles lager and Belgian strong golden ale. He also cites barrel aging as an increasingly popular method for brewing with fruit, as the tannins in the wood along with the various bacteria and yeasts interact with the puree to create interesting new fruit aroma and taste profiles.
More breweries using purees
Several of Oregon Fruit’s brewing customers have enjoyed critical acclaim using the purees. As an example, Yachats Brewing recently won a bronze medal at the 2017 Best of Craft Beer Awards in American-Style Sour Ale category for its Cranberry Sour beer using Oregon Fruit’s cranberry puree. More Fruit for Fermentation seasonal offerings will be released quarterly in 2017, with pink guava expected in the spring and mandarin orange in the summer.
All of Oregon Specialty Fruit purees are aseptically packaged to ensure shelf-stable, clean fruit brewers can count on. The product is minimally processed to ensure the best fresh fruit flavor and color. Most of the purees have a shelf life of 18 months in ambient temperature.