Miracle Fruit and Beer

July 21, 2010

After reading the Mad Fermentationist’s blog titled “Miracle Fruit Sour Beer Tasting”, I bought some Miracle Fruit Tablets and decided to try them out at the Portland International Beerfest 2010.

I didn’t consume a miracle fruit pill when I first got there, as there were some things I wanted to taste as is without altered tastebuds. It was when I got a Franziskaner Dunkel-Weisse beer that I finally tried out one of the pills. I didn’t really make that many notes regarding this beer ahead of time, simply stating, “Eh, it is beer.” So even after five 4 oz samples of cider, mead, and fruit beers, I wasn’t really caring to drink beer. Then I took the miracle fruit pill, and then tried the Franziskaner Dunkel-Weisse. It tasted better to me, and I was starting to pick up more creamy and caramel notes, which were probably already there but hidden. Since sourness was being toned down and replaced with sweetness, these characteristics were coming though stronger to me.

Since there were a lot of sour beers there, I tried New Belgium La Folie. I turned to my husband and said, “Wow, this beer must be really sour, because this is syrupy sweet to me right now!” In fact, it was almost too much so, but it was good. When we came back the next day, my husband got a sample of the La Folie again, and it was really sour, but I could still detect the syrup taste on the edges. Again, it was probably always there, but the sourness just put it into balance, and once it was stripped away and converted to sweetness, the syrup taste became dominate.

With my altered taste buds, my husband got 21st Amendment Double Trouble Imperial IPA, which is a very hoppy beer, too hoppy for my husband. When I tried it with my altered taste buds, I pushed it away. My husband was shocked, “You can still taste that?” “Yes.” He was a little disappointed, as he hoped that with my altered taste buds that I would like it and drink it for him! Also, if I liked it, I might start drinking more beer with him. Now, everyone has different tastes, and everyone reacts differently to the miracle fruit, but this experience is why I believe the CSI: New York got it wrong when they said it makes bitter foods sweet, as the IPA was still very bitter to me.

In hind sight, I should have gone and gotten a porter, which are typically less hoppy and more creamy with chocolate or coffee notes, but I did not think of it at the time. I’ll have to have a miracle fruit tasting sometime in the future, so I’ll try an remember then. I’m excited!

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