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... - Politics and Government - McClatchy D.C. Bureau - McClatchy Network

Tuesday, Aug. 17, 2010

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From juice to alcohol in 48 hours

- Milwaukee Journal Sentinel

It started as juice and ended as fizzy alcohol. In between there were 48 hours, a yeast/sugar packet and a rubber stopper.

That's all it takes to spike regular old fruit juice with a simple kit from Spike Your Juice. The California company, started by a group of Europeans, set out to recreate Federweier, a seasonal German sparkling juice drink. They concocted a yeast/sugar combination that, when added to fruit juice, would ferment the juice and create a fizzy champagne-like alcoholic beverage.

It's pretty much as easy as it sounds.

-Start with juice

-Add the little packet:

-Place the rubber stopper contraption on the bottle:

-Affix a new label so no kids get confused and pour themselves a glass with lunch (not that any kids have access to our fridge, but who am I to say no to a fun label?)

48 hours later it is fully fermented.

And now, for the taste test...

The first few sips were decidedly champagne-like. After a few minutes, the drinks lost their fizziness and tasted more like sweet wine. There was a definite yeast flavor throughout.

I did question just how much alcohol was in it. The longer you let it sit, the stronger it gets, and this didn't taste very strong. Were I determined to find out the answer I probably would have had more than one or two cups, but alas maybe that will have to wait for another time.

Overall, the drink tasted good, but not great. It was sweet and summery, and just kind of fun knowing it was semi-homemade. I'd be interested to try different flavors of juice.

A $10 Spike Your Juice kit comes with six yeast packets, enough to make six 64-ounce bottles, or three gallons. Not a bad deal if you ask me. I think it'd make a fun little gift, and the spiked juice would be a good addition to the drink selection at a party. Spike Your Juice has a few simple drink recipes on their website

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