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Old 12-05-2010, 02:30 AM   #1
Eigenbrau
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Default Olives as a bittering agent?

So, I'm all about trying new things. Olives, when pulled directly from the tree, are unbearably bitter and must be treated in brine prior to consumption. This got me to thinking, what about using this in conjunction with hops as a bittering agent for beer? Any thoughts? Has anyone tried this in the past?

The leaves and a preliminary oil called Amurca are also extremely bitter and could potentially impart some excellent flavors into a young beer.

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Old 12-05-2010, 02:44 AM   #2
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I'd love to hear about it if you try it out. If you're in the mood for experimenting with bittering agents, Huang lian, aka Rhizoma Coptidis is one of the most bitter things I've ever tasted. Shockingly bitter is the best description I could give.

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Old 12-05-2010, 03:11 AM   #3
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I think these are both interesting ideas but with one exception. Wouldn't the oil in the olives kill the head retention?

Either of these things could presumably make a beer more bitter than you could get with hops. Maybe bitter with some of this stuff and load all the hops in the last 20-30 min for a super bitter and hoppy IIPA.

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Old 12-05-2010, 03:18 AM   #4
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I could definitely see head retention possibly being an issue, but nothing some experimentation and a kick of maltodextrin couldn't fix.

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Old 12-05-2010, 02:17 PM   #5
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Head retention is overrated... nice to have, but unnecessary to good beer.

I think it's worth trying but man I'm not gonna be the one to do the experiment. Obviously one of the side benefits of hop bitterness is also the preservative effect - I'm curious if any other plant has that (doubtful). Basically, anything to temper the sweetness of malt will technically be a good bittering agent.

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Old 02-17-2011, 05:09 PM   #6
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I was about to start a thread just like this. I was thinking the same thing "using olives for bittering" But I'm way to much of a wimp to try it. I have ton of olive trees by my work and I would love to try this. Any updates? have you given it a shot yet?

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