Prickly pears are showing up in a wide range of alcoholic beverages. Also known as cactus figs for its luscious mouthfeel, prickly pears offer a sweet, bright flavor that some people compare with watermelon. Its flavor profile makes it especially popular in the alcoholic beverage category, where it takes center stage ready-to-drink prickly pear coolers,
The flavor-packed dragon fruit brings more than playful style and subtle sweetness to cocktails and ales. The pretty pink cactus fruit, also known as pitaya, packs a nutrient-dense wallop for health conscious consumers.
Modern brewers use purees to capture the essence of fresh fruits in season. Seasonal craft brews capture the soul of each season with the intense fresh fruit flavors of purees. For spring beers, brewers choose from juicy stone fruits like apricot, peaches, and plums. Summer brews boast cherries, strawberries, and watermelon. In the fall, apple ciders and pumpkin ales are inevitable. But what do brewers do with winter, a season that doesn’t exactly scream fresh fruit?
Over the last couple of years, Americans have begun to experiment with a wider variety of flavors at home, creating a new appreciation for novel culinary experiences. As a result, more consumers are beginning to think and behave like foodies, which has led to experimental brewers integrating more exotic ingredients into craft beers.
Americans eat around fifteen pounds of watermelon annually per capita. Statistically, if you aren’t eating watermelon right now, somebody in your family is probably picking up your slack. It’s easily the most popular of the melons, and it’s a staple of cookouts, beach trips, and family reunions. Naturally, that makes watermelon a perfect pairing for beer, another warm weather favorite.
Mango’s rich, mellow perfume has the ability to enhance the sweetness of fruity beers or to accentuate the hops in beers with more bite. In recent years, craft brewers have had great success combining mango pureé with Simcoe, Citra, Cascade and Galaxy hops, to name just a few.
Blueberry alcoholic beverages experienced an 89% growth between 2019 and 2020, when Firmenich Flavors named the humble berry the flavor of the year. Its popularity hasn’t diminished since then. In fact, while the Maine native has often been associated with summertime, many food and beverage brands have been incorporating blueberries into their fall menus this year.
While modern market goers may not be familiar with black currants yet, this piquant berry was a staple summer fruit of farmhouses and monasteries in bygone days. It’s been a versatile ingredient in European ales, wines, and preserves for centuries, adding an earthy sweetness and a floral aroma to beverages and dishes.