Ginger Beer and Fermented Soda FAQs
Artisanal Ginger Beer & Other Naturally Fermented Sodas: Top 15 FAQs
- What is artisanal ginger beer?
Artisan ginger beer is a traditionally fermented, non-alcoholic beverage made from fresh ginger, sugar, and water, offering a spicy kick and natural carbonation, often rich in probiotics due to the fermentation process.
- How do you make ginger beer from scratch?
Making ginger beer involves creating a ginger bug (a starter culture), which is then added to a sweetened ginger tea. The mixture is left to ferment for a period, usually around 21 days, allowing natural carbonation to develop.
- Can you explain the fermentation process for ginger beer?
Fermentation is a metabolic process where the natural yeasts and bacteria convert sugars into alcohol and carbon dioxide. For ginger beer, this process is halted early to retain minimal alcohol content and achieve natural carbonation.
- Is the water used in making ginger beer important?
Yes, the water quality is crucial. Using 100% reverse osmosis filtered water ensures that impurities are removed, which can affect the taste and clarity of the final product.
- What makes Daissy ginger beer and other sodas naturally carbonated?
The carbonation in ginger beer comes from the fermentation process, where yeast transforms sugar into alcohol and carbon dioxide, creating a naturally effervescent drink.
- Why is ginger beer slow fermented?
Slow fermentation, often over 21 days, allows for a more complex flavor profile to develop and increases the concentration of beneficial live cultures in the ginger beer.
- What does it mean for ginger beer to be raw and unfiltered?
Raw and unfiltered ginger beer hasn't been pasteurized or filtered, preserving all the natural enzymes and probiotics, which can be beneficial for gut health.
- Are there any preservatives in artisanal ginger beer?
Authentic artisanal ginger beer typically contains no preservatives. It relies on the natural preservative effects of the fermentation process.
- How do you ensure consistency in flavor when making ginger beer?
Consistency is achieved through careful measurement of ingredients, maintaining stable fermentation conditions, and using the same water source and quality of ginger.
- Can homemade ginger beer go bad?
Yes, if not stored properly, homemade ginger beer can spoil. Signs of spoilage include off odors, mold, and over-fermentation, causing too much carbonation or bottles to explode. It's essential to follow safe fermentation and storage practices.
- I want to avoid sugar. Why is it used in making soda?
Without sugar, there is no fermentation, and without fermentation, there is no real fermented soda at all. By the end of the fermentation process, there is little sugar remaining. This is actually a good thing because that residual sugar balances the tanginess of the many acids the finished product contains, making it much more delicious.
- Can you brew it to the point when it is almost sugar-free?
Yes, we can. At that point, the brew, however, may have already tasted like vinegar, which is appealing to not many people.
- How about using alternative sweeteners?
Yes it is possible to use less sugar in the fermentation with the addition of other sweeteners like glucose and extracts from stevia. The drawbacks are that they result in a weird taste and despite sounding like natural ingredients as many breweries want them to, they are in fact highly processed substances.
At Daissy, we stick to using only cane sugar as it brings out the purest taste in the finished product, the way the beverage has been made traditionally.
- Does your soda contain alcohol?
As a traditionally fermented food, soda may contain a trace amount of naturally occurring alcohol. But did you know that even fresh produce like ripe banana or fresh orange juice has some alcohol as well?
- Why do you emphasize ‘ALWAYS KEEP REFRIGERATED’?
Ours is a raw, living food containing live and active cultures so it keeps fermenting even when stored in fridge (at a snail’s speed though). At room temperature, it, however, ferments at a much faster rate and may get over fermented, becoming unpalatable. If left out too long, the liquid may gush out when opening or the bottle may explode in the extreme case.For your enjoyment and safety, we recommend keeping the our drinks refrigerated at all times, best below 4oC/39oF.