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Old 07-23-2012, 09:56 PM   #1
Danbreeze
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Default Adding honey at bottling and or secondary

I have an English Brown Ale I made and was asked by someone to add honey to it, stating they enjoy Honey Brown (didnt know they still made that beer ) I made 10 gal of it, so I plan on flavoring half the batch with honey (5 gal)

Has anyone tried adding honey at the time of bottling, or does it lose the flavor and just carbonate the beer?

If I add it at secondary, how much should I add per 5 gal to give it a nice honey flavor and for how long should it sit in secondary with the honey?

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Old 07-23-2012, 10:07 PM   #2
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Default Honey addition during secondary

Adding honey to the secondary will add little flavor. The honey will mostly just sit on the bottom of the bucket.

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Old 07-23-2012, 11:14 PM   #3
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Adding honey to secondary is what a lot of people suggest. If you added it in primary it would come out less so. Also, I have heard of people bottling with honey. I imagine that would give you your best results.

Here is the calculator I imagine you would use if you wanted to prime with honey: http://www.northernbrewer.com/priming-sugar-calculator/

Hope this helps!

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Old 07-23-2012, 11:16 PM   #4
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As long as you don't boil it, you should get some honey flavors. But most of the flavor does ferment out. If adding to the secondary, you should be fine with a week or so, just make sure fermentation is finished. If you add at bottling you'll need to test how much sugar there is so you don't make bottle bombs or overcarb. It can be done, but secondary may be easier. You could try adding a pound of honey to 5 gallons and do a side by side-- my bet is it will be subtle, but could be quite nice! Use a nice flavored honey like orange blossom.

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Old 07-23-2012, 11:39 PM   #5
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I recently got great flavor adding pasteurized honey to a wheat beer. I added it to the primary after about 2-3 days. To pasteurize your honey (kills any micro dudes and wild yeast), put it in an oven safe sauce pan @ 180F for 2-3 hours. Stir occasionally to prevent burning. Then put it in on ice until its at room temp. With this method, you get the glucose and fructose to ferment out, but still leave the complex sugars and carbohydrates that will add that honey flavor to your beer.

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Old 07-23-2012, 11:45 PM   #6
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Quote:
Originally Posted by DMace View Post
I recently got great flavor adding pasteurized honey to a wheat beer. I added it to the primary after about 2-3 days. To pasteurize your honey (kills any micro dudes and wild yeast), put it in an oven safe sauce pan @ 180F for 2-3 hours. Stir occasionally to prevent burning. Then put it in on ice until its at room temp. With this method, you get the glucose and fructose to ferment out, but still leave the complex sugars and carbohydrates that will add that honey flavor to your beer.
Just so you know, you shouldn't even need to do that. Honey can't harbor many critters, and if you add it after primary fermentation, you have less to worry about already.

If you do pasteurize, you shouldn't need to keep it there for 2-3 hours. A couple minutes should be fine.
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Old 07-24-2012, 12:02 AM   #7
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I only use honey to carb my beers, never any trouble. Just 3 tablespoons PER GALLON! That is 1.5 ounces or 63 grams per gallon to get a standard 2.5 vols carb. There are so many varieties out there to try so experiment. I simply warm it up in a bottling pot and swirl it around...add beer then bottle. Never any issues with carbonation. Maybe a week longer (4 weeks) to be sure.

You get a very subtle upfront aroma/taste of honey. The longer they age they less you get. Basically gone by 3 months. Hope this helps

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Old 07-24-2012, 01:03 AM   #8
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Thanks for the feedback guys

I plan on grabbing some orange blossom honey tomorrow and giving it a shot. Might add some water to thin it a bit for mixing in secondary.

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Old 07-24-2012, 01:04 AM   #9
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Danbreeze View Post
Thanks for the feedback guys

I plan on grabbing some orange blossom honey tomorrow and giving it a shot. Might add some water to thin it a bit for mixing in secondary.
I've had success simply soaking the jar in some warm to hot water, making the honey more fluid, so you can get all of it out, and it mixes quite well then.
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Old 07-24-2012, 01:06 AM   #10
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I bottled an irish red with honey about two weeks ago and the honey flavor was there, but it nice and subtle. If that's what you're going for then, IMHO, bottling with honey should do you just fine.

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