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-   -   Gluten Free Brewing Observations (http://www.homebrewtalk.com/f164/gluten-free-brewing-observations-65034/)

FatMonsters 05-06-2008 07:59 PM

Gluten Free Brewing Observations
I brewed up a Gluten-Free beer over the weekend and thought I would share some of the differences I noticed while brewing it. It was an extract recipe as I used the Sorghum Malt Syrup from Northern Brewer. I brewed this for a friend of mine who is gluten intolerant.

- The malt syrup was extremely thick! It was definitely thicker than regular LME. I even kept a little pot of warm water on the oven to try and warm up the syrup so that it would flow easier into the kettle.

- When I got the water boiling, I added the malt syrup and it barely made a dent in color. Seriously this was lighter than Bud Light in the kettle. The 60 minute boil didn't darken too much either. The color came from the Succanat sugar I added.

- I had three attempted boil-overs that I quelched each time. I have never had that many boil-overs in a batch.

- Aerating the cooled wort was a real chore and it never seemed to hold any head on top. I shook the bejesus out of it and it just wouldn't foam up on top. It quicly settled into the wort.

- Its been fermenting 3 days now, very vigorous bubbling through airlock, but krausen is barely there. Again, it won't hold a head. I'm kinda concerned for bottling...

I grabbed a sample before pitching the yeast and it tasted fine. I'm very curious for the overall outcome of the beer.

Revvy 05-06-2008 08:09 PM

Good post....I think you're the first among us to actually attempt doing one...I'll look forward to hearing how it finally turns out.

david_42 05-07-2008 12:06 AM

The commercial sorghum beers I've had don't have much of a head either.

What style were you shooting for & what was your hop schedule?

FatMonsters 05-07-2008 12:11 AM


Originally Posted by Revvy (Post 667685)
I think you're the first among us to actually attempt doing one...I'll look forward to hearing how it finally turns out.

I have been meaning for awhile to try one since my friend has Celiacs disease. Thought it would cool to surprise her for her birthday with gluten-free beer. She wasn't always gluten intolerant, she developed it about a hear and half ago.

I didn't have the recipe earlier at work, but here it is if anyone is interested:
__________________________________________________ _
Recipe Type: Extract
Yeast: Nottingham Dry Yeast
Batch Size (Gal): 5
Original Gravity: 1.054
Est Final Gravity: 1.014
IBU: 23.1
Boiling Time (Min): 60
Color: 5

6 lbs White Sorghum Extract Syrup (Northern Brewer - 37 ppg, 2-6 deg L)
1 lbs Succanat Sugar
.75 lbs Orange Blossom Honey (At Flameout)
1 oz Spalt (4.5%) - 60 min
1 oz Spalt (4.5%) - 20.0 min
1 oz Hallertauer Select (1.5%) - 5 min
1 pkg Danstar Nottingham Dry Yeast
__________________________________________________ _

I adapted the recipe from the BYO article for the Simple Simon recipe. I couldn't get Tettnang at the time so I subbed in Spalt and I had some of the Hallertauer Select so I threw it in last minute and threw in some succanat sugar. Overall, like I said, it tasted fine before pitching...

FatMonsters 05-07-2008 12:12 AM


Originally Posted by david_42 (Post 667980)
What style were you shooting for & what was your hop schedule?

A balanced ale - Not hoppy or malty...

Jaybird 05-07-2008 12:41 AM

Ok so I have to ask how much did this cost for the 5 gallon batch?
I have a guy here that I told I would brew a batch for and I like the looks of you recipe. Where did you get the succanat sugar?

Kimsta 05-07-2008 12:57 AM

How would fruit go with this recipe? I have a friend with celiac's as well and she loves wine. She would be interested in how it would taste with Rasperries, etc. It'd get her to try some decent beer for a change.

Sixbillionethans 05-07-2008 03:28 AM

I'd be interested to hear your opinion of the sucanat. I got mine at the local hippie grocery store...they have it packaged and bulk.

I put 1.5 lb in what was supposed to be a Belgian Tripel http://www.homebrewtalk.com/f73/belgian-strong-ale-63627/. It contributed far more color and darker flavors than I expected, so I ended up calling it a Belgian Strong Ale. For a beer with 14 lb of other stuff, the sucanat just comes screaming out in the flavor profile.

In my "tripel", the sucanat lends a rum-like sweetness that really comes out as the beer warms up. I think the ingredient could really be great in dubbels, stouts, perhaps porters, or it would really add interest to a winter seasonal. IMHO, I think sucanat is quite a bit different than some of the other sugars.

blacklab 05-07-2008 04:32 AM

Curious to hear how this turns out. I also have a friend with Celiac who came down with it about five years ago. She was a beer lover as well and I'd love to make her some gluten free brew.

FatMonsters 05-07-2008 12:40 PM


Originally Posted by Jaybird (Post 668022)
Ok so I have to ask how much did this cost for the 5 gallon batch?
Where did you get the succanat sugar?

I ordered the ingredients (malt syrup, hops and yeast) from Northern Brewer. The syrup, hops and yeast is $18-$20. I ordered stuff for my wheat ale at the same time so I had it all shipped for the brew saver special of $7.99 (I think that is the cost?). So not bad on the cost from NB.

The succanat sugar I got from the health food store in town. I want to say that was $4 - $5 for a 2 .lb bag. And then the Orange Blossom Honey I got from the local supermarket at $3 for a 12 oz plastic bottle. Worst case, without shipping costs, is $28 - $30. Not bad...

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