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I'm about to start a brew using a 'Simply Ginger Beer' kit. I've heard that it's sweet, and light which is what I want, but it's not very gingery. Would it be ok to add some grated and boiled fresh ginger at the point the batch is first made up? Or would it be better to add it after a week or so?

The next obvious question is: What would be a good starting quantity? I'm not sure if we're talking 50g or 500g!

Other info: I'm fermenting it in a 5 gallon glass carboy. Will be using 1kg brew enhancer. Will be using the included yeast/sweetener sachet. I plan to bottle it in flip-tops at the end.

I'm new to this, I've only done 4 or 5 kit brews with varying degrees of success.

Thanks! Ben

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up vote 3 down vote accepted

No hands on experience on this kind of brew, but a few thoughts:

You have a few options, add the ginger to the boil, to the primary fermenter or to the secondary fermenter (or if you don't have/use another fermenter, to the primary after the active fermentation is done).

Each will most likely give different results, I would guess adding it to the boil may result in more extraction when compared to the fermentor additions (depending on how long you leave it there).

If you add it to the primary fermentor you may loose some of the ginger aroma, in a similar way to what happens to hop aromas (the CO2 leaving the beer takes the aroma with it).

On the secondary the amount of CO2 emissions is greatly diminished, but the ginger will be in contact with the beer for less time, possibly giving out less flavor.

As for the amounts, unless you have experienced with it before it is impossible to know, your kit probably have some flavor already so you could probably overdo it...

A suggestion: Boil some amount of ginger to your taste in something like a liter of water, then extrapolate it to your 5 gallons.

Say you like it with 30 gr of ginger in a liter of water. Multiply it by 20 and you get 600gr.

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Thanks! Good ideas. I'll do the boil-taste-test this week shortly :) –  Mere Development Mar 14 '13 at 22:27
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@MereDevelopment Just mind it that the taste will likely be different from your 'ginger tea' to the actual beer due to the hop flavors, residual sugars, malt flavor, etc... –  Cleber Goncalves Mar 15 '13 at 7:41
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