Tahiti’s local brewery has been testing a beer made from Uru, taking advantage of the breadfruit that grows in abundance throughout the country.
Following the success of the Report on the Uru or Breadfruit Tree this piece of news will create even more interest in this incredibly versatile tree. The quality and taste of Uru Beer have received glowing reports. It’s a beer, well which tastes exactly like a beer should taste, with a golden color & a crisp, refreshing taste.
The present focus in Tahiti is to determine how to put in place a constant, regular & sufficiently large supply of uru to permit the ongoing production of the quantities sought.
This question of supply intrigues me in the knowledge that it is estimated that in Tahiti, some 80% of the uru produced by breadfruit trees simply falls from the tree to splatter on the ground below.
Tahiti is not the only one to have embarked on the adventure of Uru Beer. A beer made from breadfruit & roasted papaya seeds called Liquid Breadfruit is currently manufactured and sold in Hawaii. A beer right up there at 8%!
A Samoan beer producer to is set to launch a beer made from ulu (as the fruit is known there). The aim is to initially service the local market, but the sights are set on the international demand for boutique beers amongst an increasingly more health conscious market-place. Uru Beer is, after all, gluten-free & low in calories.
The Uru Beer project in Samoa has been actively underway since 2006. A local brewer found whilst studying for his brewing qualifications that he could replace 12% of imported malt (barley) with breadfruit.
By 2013 this figure had increased to 20%. Once again, supply is the area of concern in Samoa and the required volume of production is readily available, but there is a need to tie in producers.
Here in Tahiti the Uru Beer project has been taken up by the Service du Developpement Rural (SDR), the body charged with the responsibility in matters rural, which has reportedly started training more than 150 breadfruit growers in the production of uru flour, a key ingredient in the production of uru beer & of course uru bread.
As an update, Uru Beer – Pia Uru – is now produced & available in Tahiti.
Some tasting notes for this local delicacy:
Pale color. A bubbly head but not the deep frothy head of say a Guinness. Poured into a room temperature glass, the bubbles gathered on the glass with no sign of lines of small bubbles rising.
A certain bland fruity, almost starchy smell
Light in the mouth despite being 4.6%. A bland vegetal, almost cucumber taste on the front & back palate. Clean finish.
An interesting entry into the market and on balance a good effort. The bubbles are more akin to a soda than a beer, the head needs froth (not bubbles). The taste is too light & lacks bite. If drinkers are to be weaned off their existing beer preferences more refinement is required to render the difference in taste less dramatic.