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My first fruit beer... I have just racked a wheat beer base onto a secondary of food blended frozen cherries. Am I ok to give this a bit of a stir now and again? Im aware introducing too much oxygen is bad, but I just can't see how the cherry paste locked at the bottom of the tub can impart any flavour into the liquid if it is not touching the beer.

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up vote 2 down vote accepted

There shouldn't be a problem with a gentle stir or rocking of the carboy. Too much is a problem though as you seem to be aware of already. Keep it to a minimum. and be sure to go gentle.

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Thanks. Good to know. I suppose the other side of this question is - do I HAVE to stir it, or is it likely to do all the work on its own. (The paste is about 2 inches deep) – JamieG Jun 17 '13 at 19:15
Depending on how long you leave it it may end up being unnecessary. The beer may work its way down to the bottom and loosen up the paste over time. – Jared Meyering Jun 17 '13 at 20:10

Give it a swirl. I would avoid stirring personally due to potential sanitation issues.

As for potential oxidation, you should be good there. You just racked beer on top of the cherries, so there's going to be some additional fermentation of the sugar from the fruit. This should produce enough CO2 to clear out the head space in your carboy, so you shouldn't have any oxygen left in there to worry about.

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I agree, sanitation is more important. Wait until the cherry-induced fermentation completes, bubble lock stops, and you'll have enough CO2 left to give it a swirl to stir up whatever is still stuck at the bottom. – Scott Jun 17 '13 at 22:37

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