Island King Pineapple Wheat Beer

Sunday, August 5th, 2012

I was asked for a homebrew recipe, so here’s one that brews quickly and is perfect for this time of year. Island King Pineapple Wheat is light, easy to make, and easy to drink. It’s also not too common to see a pineapple beer at all, so it tends to be a hit at parties.

Add to 7 gallons of reverse osmosis water:

2.2 tsp chalk
.25 tsp baking soda
1/3tsp calcium chloride
approx. 1g epsom salt

Stir to dissolve. Experienced brewers will note that this is a lot of chalk for a light-colored beer, but you’ll need it to cut the acidity.


3 lbs malted wheat
3 lbs Maris Otter or other two-row barley malt
1 lb flaked wheat

…in 3 gallons of the prepared water at 152F, until an iodine test comes back negative. Sparge with remaining water at 170F to make 6 gallons.

Bring to a boil; add 1 oz Hallertau hops and allow to boil for 45 minutes. Don’t bother with Irish moss or other clarifiers; they won’t help.

As you turn off the heat, add 3 46-oz cans of Dole pineapple juice, or a little over a gallon. Other brands will work as long as they are free of preservatives, which will interfere with your yeast.

Cool via your preferred method; pitch with White Labs WLP011 European Ale yeast or similar. Keg and serve very cold. Makes about 5 gallons.

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17 Responses to “Island King Pineapple Wheat Beer”

  1. #1 |  Maggie McNeill | 

    Does it go well with potato salad? ;-)

  2. #2 |  ClubMedSux | 

    One beer I’ve been meaning to brew for years but have yet to get around to is a coconut porter. It just occurred to me that if one were to brew both that and your pineapple beer, one could make a piña colada black and tan.

  3. #3 |  Leah | 

    I wouldn’t have expected Dole to be preservative free, huh.

  4. #4 |  Leah | 

    @clubmedsux DO IT!

  5. #5 |  ClubMedSux | 

    Maybe in the spring. We’ve got Oktoberfest season to get through first…

  6. #6 |  liberranter | 

    Fruit in beer? UGH! If I weren’t a libertarian, I’d say “there oughta be a law!”

    This is why the Germans came up with the <a href=";Reinheitsgebot, although I see that more as a standard to aspire to than a law.

  7. #7 |  ClubMedSux | 

    Hey liberranter… The Germans also came up with mixing raspberry syrup in their Berliner Weisse and mixing lemonade with their Pilsner. Oh, and prior to the Reinheitsgebot (which, incidentally, was a Bavarian protectionist law fronting as a “purity law”) they brewed stuff like Kirschbier, which is brewed with cherries.

    I would guess 90% of what I brew is Reinheitsgebot-compliant, so I’m sympathetic to your personal taste, but there are exceptions to every rule–including the “no fruit in beer” rule.

  8. #8 |  Leah | 

    The Reinheitsgebot should be pretty horrifying to anyone opposed to protectionism, plus it’s not like many older styles weren’t grandfathered in so plenty of authentically German styles don’t adhere to it. We tend to brew our German styles fairly strictly to style but styles that either aren’t German or are older German styles (Gose, etc) – there’s no reason to adhere to protectionist legislation from long ago.

  9. #9 |  Leah | 


  10. #10 |  liberranter | 

    The Germans also came up with mixing raspberry syrup in their Berliner Weisse and mixing lemonade with their Pilsner. Oh, and prior to the Reinheitsgebot (which, incidentally, was a Bavarian protectionist law fronting as a “purity law”) they brewed stuff like Kirschbier, which is brewed with cherries.

    I’m familiar with some of these. I recall in particular having sampled an Erdbeerenpils (strawberry pilsner) from one of the more obscure breweries around Frankfurt that I once visited. I can easily see why these are popular, but, well… they just ain’t real beer in my book.

    You’re right too about the Rheinheitsgebot’s history. It’s a good illustration of how someone’s standard can, under all the wrong conditions, morph into an oppressive law.

  11. #11 |  Matt | 

    The Reinheitsgebot is incredibly stupid. And no one follows it, not even the Germans. It allows three ingredients in your beer: Barley, water, and hops. There is another very important ingredient that is not listed in there because the people who came up with the law didn’t know what yeast was. So if you want to follow the 1516 law (which many breweries claim to) you can’t use cultivated yeast in your beer. The only beer style I know that doesn’t use cultivated yeast is Belgian Lambics, and I don’t think the Belgians give a shit about the Reinheitsgewhatsit and its rules.

    But lets ignore yeast and look at that list again: Barley, water, and hops. What else is missing? Oh right, wheat. Germans drink hefeweizens like they drink water, yet wheat and rye are banned from the 1516 law. Actually, the entire point of the 1516 law was to ban wheat from beer (officially so that bakers didn’t have to compete with brewers for wheat, unofficially because it made the barley that the nobles grew more valuable). So technically, if you want to complain about this particular recipe from the standpoint of the Reinheitsgherhejkhkhhrehlkhre, you should mention that before the pineapple juice.

    Salting your water is also technically banned, as chalk/gypsum/etc is not allowed. So if you have shitty water you are SOL for making beer to begin with.

    Here’s a recipe I came up with. It turned out quite nicely, and is a hit with everyone I’ve given a sample to:
    5 gallons water
    4.5lbs US Pale
    4.5lbs UK Pale
    .5lbs Special B
    .25lbs Torrefied Wheat
    1lb Dark Candi Sugar (80 SRM)
    .75lbs Turbinado
    .75oz Willamette (4.5%) 60min
    .75oz Willamette (4.5%) 30min
    1214 yeast
    Mash at 151
    85% Efficiency assumed, OG 1.072, FG 1.009
    Ferment at 75

  12. #12 |  davepen | 

    I’m not drinking anything with three pounds of otter meat in it. Yuck.

  13. #13 |  Jason Kuznicki | 


    I would think the high fat content in coconut makes it off-limits for brewing. But I do see some recipes out there. I may give it a try soon.


    It’s not just no-preservatives. It’s also vitamin fortified.

    @6 and others

    The Reinheitsgebot is why so much German beer is technically perfect though ultimately rather boring. Not following it is why Belgian beer is weird but awesome. The law is in any case totally impossible for homebrewers to follow, as Matt @11 correctly notes.

    It’s a mystery to me why people give so much respect to this oudated bit of mercantilism. If we dug up a French bread purity law from the 17th century and it forbade butter, I doubt we would give it any reverence at all.

  14. #14 |  Allen Garvin | 

    There’s a lot of evidence that Rheinheitsgebot was used as a club by Bayern to shut down competing breweries in other German states at the time of German unification. By making it a requirement for the entire country if Bavaria was to be joined into Germany, it assured that many competing breweries would be put out of business with stupid regulatory laws. The original Reinheitsgebot wasn’t about brewing purity; the 1516 law banned wheat from being used in beer, at the request of bakers. It gave bakers monopolistic rights to wheat, instead of allowing it to float free on the market.

    And 19th century documents show that German brewing traditions were every bit as diverse as Belgian traditional brewing at the time. A vast diversity of interesting beer was lost because of it. Leipzig gose (spiced with coriander and salt) is one of the very few interesting styles that managed to get a reprieve and survive it.

  15. #15 |  Brad Warbiany | 

    I go for Gose! Awesome for this summer heat. And while you wouldn’t expect a “tart wheat ale brewed with salt and coriander” to be a huge crowd-pleaser, I’ve been amazed that everyone seems to love this beer.

    Recipe below was scaled from 10 gallons, so I’m omitting actual grain/hop weight to allow you to account for efficiency.

    50% Wheat
    25% Pilsner Malt
    25% Acid Malt

    Mash the above at ~153 degrees. I personally mash this beer with only about a quarter of the acid malt for about 45 minutes, then add the rest of the acid malt (along with boiling water to maintain the temp) for another 45 minutes, b/c I am concerned about all the acid messing up the conversion. But a buddy brewed the same recipe and threw it all in at once and it wasn’t a problem.

    Target OG: 1.045

    90 minute boil
    @ 60 minutes, add enough Saaz hops to get somewhere between 7-10 IBU
    @ 60 minutes, add sea salt (0.75 oz per 5 gallons recipe)
    @ 5 minutes, add corander (1/4 oz or so per 5 gallons recipe)

    I use 2 pkgs SafAle S-05 and one vial WLP300 for 10 gallons. For 5 gallons, I’d just drop that to a single pack. Ferment 1-2 weeks at 62 deg F. The combination of the two yeasts gives you *mostly* a neutral ferment, but you pick up some of the clove from the WLP300 and it fits very nicely in this beer without turning it into a “hefeweizen” style.

  16. #16 |  Jack Dempsey | 

    Any need for pectic enzymes using the pineapple juice?

  17. #17 |  David Gross | 

    Ever try “tepache”?

    It’s a sort of spiced pineapple/piloncillo cider. Ferments quickly and is served over ice. I’ve brewed it up a couple of times and it’s a crowd-pleaser.