Style Guidelines: Winner of our 14th annual Homebrew Competition in 2009. Lloyd Cicetti's Wheat Beer with Blood Oranges is a citrusy and supremely refreshing with floral notes thanks to Sicillian blood orange zest added to the brew kettle and puree added during and after fermentation. This hefeweizen has hints of fruity esters and spice from Bavarian wheat yeast.
Rotation Schedule: Limited Edition, One-off brew
Food Pairings: Bucket of mussels, Meditteranean Platter, Pierogi and Sausage; just about any dessert; this beer really can wash down anything or quench a thirst all by itself.
Color: Hazy Straw with a hint of Crimson
Grain: British Lager, wheat and pale malts
Bittering Hops: German Hallertau
Finishing Hops: German Hallertau and Czech Saaz
Original Gravity: 1.048
Estimated IBUs: 2.9
Alcohol By Volume: 5.0%
First Tapped: June 13, 2010
About the Ale: It's difficult to find out just when oranges were introduced into what is now Italy. From their travels to the southern and eastern reaches of their Empire, the Romans knew of them, and oranges are occasionally depicted in Roman art.
However, it is generally accepted that citrus fruits were first cultivated in Sicily during the Arab period, in the ninth and tenth centuries.
The modern English word orange, like the Italian arancia, probably derives from the Arabic naranj. Oranges are native to tropical Asia, particularly the Malay region.
Cultivation of oranges gradually spread through China and India to east Africa and then to the Mediterranean region. The trees enjoy a mild climate, sunny weather and good drainage. An occasional frost or chill does not harm them.
Blood oranges are so called for their red flesh and deep red juice. When ripe, their skin may also be reddish, at least in part. In the British Empire, blood oranges were called "Maltese" oranges, and are closely related to Jaffa oranges. In Sicily, the most popular blood oranges are the Tarocco, the Moro and the Sanguigno, the latter cultivated extensively in the western part of the island as the Sanguinello of Paternò and Adernò. Though consumed in salads and desserts, blood oranges are favored for their distinctive red juice which, as it happens, is exceptionally healthy, being rich in antioxidants.
The blood orange is considered particularly Sicilian, perhaps because it is not as widely cultivated in Calabria, Spain or Greece. It is worth mentioning that, as regards citrus fruits generally, Italy is one of the world's largest producers of lemons, most of which are harvested in Sicily. It was this citrus production that earned the hills and valleys around Palermo the name "Conca d'Oro" (golden seashell) in the Middle Ages.