Chanterelle Belgian Wheat Beer Recipe and Tasting Notes

Written by Damon on December 28, 2008

I can’t decide if this beer made with Chanterelle mushrooms good or bad. It’s definitely an interesting beer which is why I’m sharing the recipe and my thoughts. My intent with this beer was to see how the fruit flavours of the Chanterelle would complement the fruit flavours from Belgian wheat beer yeast.

The base beer was taken from my excellent Belgian Wit. I removed and cooled half of the wort before adding the spices and other adjuncts for the witbier. I then filled a small 160 oz (4.7 L) carboy with the unadulterated wort and later added the rest to the spiced wort in the main fermenter.

The Chanterelle beer fermented with the same Wyeast 3944 Belgian Wit yeast as the Belgian Wit. I then added 0.4 lbs (180 g) of fresh Chanterelle mushrooms that had been washed, patted dry, and pulled apart to the secondary and let it sit for two weeks.

Tasting Notes

There is a lot of sediment in the beer including what I suspect are small chunks of mushroom. This is partly because smaller batches are harder to work with so the sediment gets agitated more than in larger batches. If the beer is left at room temperature, the beer is cloudy with yeast and mushrooms.

Apricot and fungal notes are evident in the nose, but overall the aroma is a little weak.

The beer has a little spiciness and sweetness to it along with a fruity blend of mushroom and yeast flavours. Like with my previous Winter Chanterelle beer that used a similar quantity of mushroom, on a rare sip the Chanterelles in this beer will really stand out and assert their flavour only to blend back in to the beer.

My main objection to this beer is the aftertaste which is long and somewhat reminiscent of pine detergent (an unintended adjunct?).

Brewing Notes for Future Recipes

I think the Chanterelles and Belgian Wit yeast ended up competing with each other rather than complementing each other. I thought their different fruit flavours would work well together, but I was wrong.

I think maybe mushrooms do better in stronger beers where unpleasant or unusual flavours are masked. When they work well, the mushroom flavours round out and complement the yeast flavours.

Chanterelle Belgian Wheat Recipe

Grains

Weight (lbs) Weight (kgs) Grain
5.5 lbs 2.5 kgs Pilsner Malt
2.75 lbs 1.25 kgs Wheat Malt
2.75 lbs 1.25 kgs Wheat Flakes

Hops and Adjuncts

Weight (oz) Weight (g) Ingredient Time
0.95 oz 27 g Perle 5.7%, whole 90 min
6.4 oz 180 g Chanterelles secondary

Yeast

Wyeast 3944: Belgian Witbier harvested from lees

Brewing Schedule

Brewed: 10/07/2008
Racked: 10/30/2008
Bottled:  11/14/2008

Water

No water adjustments to local Pilsen-like water.

Brewing Stats

Stage Time / Temp
Mash In Temperature 140°F 60°C
Mash In Time 80 mins
1st Rest Temperature 156°F 69°C
1st Rest Time 40 mins
Mash-Out Teperature 172°F 78°C
Mash-Out Time 20 mins
Sparge Time 80 mins
Boil Time 80 mins

OG: 1.048
IBU: approx. 17
Ferment Temp: 71°F 22°C
FG: 1.007
ABV: 4.9%

Posted Under: Mushroom Beers

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