Freezer Burn Raspberry Ale

This time around, I really wanted to brew a Raspberry Wheat ale. I’m not necessarily fond of fruit beers, but the idea fascinates me. Besides, I wanted something for the warm weather. Since I don’t drink many fruit beers, I thought this would be the perfect opportunity to try a couple of things. First, I wanted to brew a small batch using the Mr. Beer keg. 5 gallons of fruit beer is too much, but 2 gallons is easily doable.  Second, I wanted to try the Brew In A Bag (BIAB) method.

I believe I modified a recipe from Brewing Classic Styles, but I don’t remember for sure.  I wanted a bit of a honey flavor, so I added honey malt (something I recently discovered).  For the hops, I just used whatever was in my freezer, which was Northern Brewer and Kent Goldings.  I figured since it was a light tasting beer, hop choice isn’t going to be a major factor in the flavor.

I went to the brew store to get my supplies.  I asked the guy to double-crush my grains.  He gave me a lot of grief for  it, even though I explained what I was doing.  He’s never heard of BIAB.  He was skeptical at best.  But in the end, after confirming three times that I really wanted my grains double-crushed, he got me my ingredients.

I brewed up the ale on my stove-top.  I used a 5 gallon paint strainer from Home Depot to put my grains in.  I used a steamer basket at the bottom of the kettle to keep the bag from the bottom of the pot.  I raised my temp to strike temperature and added my grains.  Then I wrapped the pot with a towel and let it rest for 60 minutes.  Unfortunately, the temperature dropped close to 10° over that hour.  Next time, I’ll put the pot in the oven at the right temp for the rest to maintain proper temperature.  Oh well.

After 60 minutes, I raised the temp to 168° and pulled the bag and drained the excess wort which I added back to the pot.  Then I brewed as normal.

The whole brew day was a bit sloppy.  The sanitation wasn’t top notch.  I spilled the wort when transferring to the Mr. Beer keg, so I topped it off with tap water.  I added frozen raspberries that were 1 year old to the secondary.  Probably not the best idea.  But in the end, this was an experiment with new processes.  Since it cost me about $12 to brew, I wasn’t overly concerned.  But you know what?  It still made beer.  How’s it taste?  Pretty good, if you’re into fruit beers.


BeerTools Pro Color GraphicFreezer Burn Honey Raspberry Wheat
6-D American Wheat or Rye Beer
All Grain – Brew In A Bag
Batch #5
Size: 2 gal
Calories: 148.81 kcal per 12.0 fl oz

Original Gravity: 1.045 (1.040 – 1.055)


Terminal Gravity: 1.011 (1.008 – 1.013)


Color: 5.63 (3.0 – 6.0)


Alcohol: 4.4% (4.0% – 5.5%)


Bitterness: 24.8 (15.0 – 30.0)



  • 1.25 lb American 2-row
  • 2 lb Midwest Wheat Malt
  • .2 lb Honey Malt
  • .25 oz Northern Brewer (8.0%) – added during boil, boiled 60 min
  • .5 oz East Kent Goldings (6.5%) – added during boil, boiled 5 min
  • 1.0 ea Fermentis US-05 Safale US-05
  • 1 lb Frozen Raspberries


  • Ambient Air: 70.0 °F
  • Source Water: 60.0 °F
  • Elevation: 0.0 m
  • 00:03:00 Mash – Liquor: 2.83 gal; Strike: 158.91 °F; Target: 154 °F
  • 01:03:00 rest – Rest: 60 min; Final: 154.0 °F


  • Based on a recipe found in Brewing Classic Styles.
  • My final temp for the rest was 153°F.  I wrapped the pot with a towel.  Over the 60 minute rest, the temp dropped to 144° F.
  • After the rest, I raised the temp to 168°F, then pulled the bag and drained.  I finished my brewing as normal
  • I guess I’m not a very good pour-er, because I spilled a bunch of wort during my transfer to primary (I used a Mr. Beer keg).  So I used tap water to top it off to 2 gallons.  I used an aeration stone to pump pure O2 into the wort for 50 seconds.  Then I pitched my dry yeast.  Fermented at 63° F.
  • 3/2/2011 – I racked to 2nd Mr Beer Keg and added 1lbs of raspberries I had in the freezer.  After talking to my wife, I discovered the raspberries were in the freezer since last summer.  Hence the brew name, Freezer Burn.
  • 3/17/2011 – I used Cooper’s carbonation drops to prime my bottles.  Between loss to trub and the raspberries, I yielded 19 bottles.
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  • Travis,

    How did this Beer turn out? I’ve had some Rasberry Beer at my Sisters Wedding in one of them BIG Bottles like Wine and it was Pretty damn Tasty.

    I may be interested in brewing this one myself if you got the Profound Flavor in there.


    • Travis

      I’m not huge on fruit beers, but I thought it turned out pretty good. I was fairly happy with the results.