Jamun Sour

Another unique Indian ingredient - Jamuns !!

Recipe Development

Last year around the same time I got to taste a Jamun Melomel ( fruit mead ), and it was super interesting. So a lot of credit for this beer goes to the mead makers for inspiring me to brew with Jamuns.
I got a few jamuns and tasted them. It instantly hit me that the astringency in the jamuns would be perfect in a sour beer.

While you make this beer, you will learn a few new techniques. Working with fruit, souring wort, and blending brews.


Its a simple recipe with some base malt and some crystal malt.

8L, all-grain, OG = 1.050, FG = 1.008, IBU = 7.5

Grains -
2Kgs Pale Malt
0.3kgs Crystal

Hops -
2g Columbus ( 60 mins )

Yeast - 
3g Safale S05 ( you can use S04 too )

Specialty Ingredients -
250g of Jamun pulp in secondary for 6 days 

Brewing process

Brew the beer as usual, and integrate the following in the process.

Sour wort

Mash as usual. Bring the wort to a boil. But take 1.5 liters wort out of the pot and put in a clean sanitized jug before you add the hops to the main wort.

Cover the jug with an aluminum foil and put it in the fridge to cool down to room temp as you continue to brew the rest of the batch.
Once the wort in the jug cools down to room temp we are going to inoculate it with Lactobacilli to make sour wort.
Take a scoop of fresh curd ( Dahi ) in a sanitized bowl, whip it well and add it to the jug.
Cover and keep at room temp for the next 10 days. 

This is easier said than done. There is a high chance that the wort gets infected with some other bacteria or doesn't sour at all.

Few tips - 
  • Use dahi from a very fresh sealed packet.
  • Monitor the wort to check that you don't get any white film on top ( that would most likely be other bacteria )
  • When you taste the wort, it should have a clean sour taste. No vinegar ( acetobactor ) / pukey ( butyric acid ) taste or smell. Discard if it tastes like that.
You can use the same method to make other sour beers like Berliner Weisse an Gose.

Further reading - http://www.milkthefunk.com/wiki/Alternative_Bacteria_Sources

Using fruit

  1. On the same day as the brew day, wash the jamuns with some sanitizer and put them in a sanitized airtight container.
  2. Freeze them for a four days
  3. On day five thaw the jamuns
  4. Sanitize your hands and a bowl and separate the fruit and seeds.
  5. Sanitize your mixer grinder jar and make a jamun pulp.
  6. Add this pulp to the fermenter and let it ferment for 5 to 6 days more. Keep tasting the beer, when you feel you can taste enough Jamun, just cold crash the beer.
Obvious question is how do you guarantee there will be no infection from the fruit ?
Honestly there could be infection, but maintain enough sanitization and add the pulp to actively fermenting wort and highly unlikely that the beer will be infected. Also by day four or day five there is some alcohol in the wort that will help prevent infection.

When you add the pulp you will see that after a day all the fruit floats on top and eventually settles down after a few days.


After about 11 to 12 days both the worts, sour wort and main wort with jamun pulp are done fermenting.
Time to blend and bottle. 

Perform some bench trials to figure out the correct main wort to sour wort ratio.
Take a 75ml of main wort in a beaker and add 25 ml of sour wort to it and taste. Try different ratios until it tastes right.

I liked 1:4 ratio of sour wort to normal wort.
So I put 150ml of sour wort in 600ml bottles and filled the rest of the bottle with regular wort.

Tasting Notes

As expected there was prominent Jamun taste and the sourness complimented it really well.
The body was thin at bottling, but the mouthfeel improved after carbonation. Made a great summer beer. The jamuns gave a really nice color to the beer.

I am going to save some pulp this season to make more brews with this exciting fruit.


You can skip the souring completely and add more jamun to make an interesting brew. The jamun pulp also contributes to sourness.

I would also try this in a wheat beer next time.


  1. This seems to be an exciting summer brew! Will try some modifications with honey for sure!

  2. hi do you know how i can obtain a 2.5 gallon or larger _wide mouth_ glass carboy with three piece airlock? i'm going to make tepache but will be needing the setup for other ferments. im new to this and im in kolkata and having a hard time figuring out where to get one online preferably for about 1500 bucks. thanks if you know. please do comment.


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