Friday, June 18, 2010

Ingredients Just Fall From Trees Around Here.

I've been thinking about the cas fruit. It's a zesty little green jobber that falls from Costa Rican trees and starts rotting the second it hits the ground. You have to be quick. But it's worth the effort.

It doesn't travel well, so you won't find it at any of your fancy organic markets or big-city Latin groceries. Or rather, I'd be very surprised if you did. And there are few fruits like it so it's pretty difficult to describe. But essentially it's round, tart and acidic, and very refreshing when made into a soft drink. Fresco de cas (pictured) is a popular item in sodas* across the country. Even though they add sugar. They really shouldn't. In-house experiments with sour cas drinks have proven successful. You don't need a recipe. Just think of a blender full of cas with a splash of water and a squeeze of lime and you've got the idea. A shot of Guaro never hurt anyone either.

Well, it probably has hurt someone. Not me though.

Anyway, as an amatuerish homebrewer who has always found that his favorite beers are basically in line with the Reinheitsgebot, I am naturally looking at the whole world as a basket of possible ingredients. Against my better judgment. And I am thinking that cas fruit could be used in one hell of a sour beer.

Speaking of sour beers: Regarding the Lambic Summit during Philly Beer Week, check out the Mad Fermentationist for a full report.

*Sodas are little roadside and city-block pit stops for soft drinks and snacks. But instead of Coke and Doritos, the tico soft drinks are fresh fruit juices and the tico snacks are empanadas. For example. Theyre called sodas because they don't sell beer, so you'll have to take my word for it: sodas are a good thing.

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