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Old 06-06-2012, 08:33 PM   #1
sieglere
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Default Mr Tea Part 3

Hey guys, I'm trying to find the right forum home for this post that'll get some trafic and expertise and I was referred here, so here goes . I'd also be interested to just talk tea if no one has any input on the beer side

So I'm a tea guy. I have a large tea collection that is in the region of 15 to 20 varieties (most loose) and a green brewer. My first batchs (a 5 gal Honey Red Ale and a 2 gal Green Tea Honey Wheat) has been bottled and is carbonating so we'll see how those turn out soon enough. I've already successfully combined tea with vodka (with devastatingly fantastic effects) and I'd like to bring the full collection to beers.

After doing some light beer related reading while waiting on my little yeasts to do their magic, I know that bittering hops don't add much flavor and to get hoppy flavor, you have to add it at the end or dry hop during fermentation. I have never boiled tea for an hour so I don't know if it will also boil out or how that would go. Some teas do get bitter if you steep them too long, so it might be a cool bittering agent. I was wondering if you guys had any experience using tea in beer and I'd also like to bounce a few brew ideas off you guys (and get some suggestions as well).

So far, I think a lot of teas would go well with wheat beers but I think cool beers would be a Chi Stout, a Hojicha or Genmaichi Brown Ale (Hojicha is a roasted Japaneese green tea that has a very earthy almost burnt grass-like aroma while Genmaichi is a mixture of green tea (also Japaneese) and puffed brown rice that smells similar to popcorn), and perhaps a black tea with an ale of some sort.

So thoughts? Tips? Experience (and stories/pictures)? Funny jokes?

P.S. as soon as my green tea honey wheat is done conditioning, I'll be sure to share the results with you guys

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Old 06-06-2012, 09:00 PM   #2
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Quote:
Originally Posted by sieglere View Post
I have a large tea collection that is in the region of 15 to 20 varieties (most loose) and a green brewer. My first batchs (a 5 gal Honey Red Ale and a 2 gal Green Tea Honey Wheat) has been bottled and is carbonating so we'll see how those turn out soon enough.
Your batches are pure Kombucha or some sort of beer + tea mixture?

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I've already successfully combined tea with vodka (with devastatingly fantastic effects) and I'd like to bring the full collection to beers.
I like my alcohol well enough but I don't personally want to turn Kombucha into an alcoholic drink since it will kill some of the beneficial probiotics.

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P.S. as soon as my green tea honey wheat is done conditioning, I'll be sure to share the results with you guys
Ah, in the very last line the mystery seems to be solved - it's some kind of beertea or teabeer. So did the beer guys send you here? Sorry I can't help.
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Old 06-06-2012, 09:09 PM   #3
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I've brewed a lot with tea, mostly Tulsi tea. Just tapped a Raspberry Peach Tulsi Saison and it's stellar. My first experiments were with Tulsi Lemon Ginger, which uses lemongrass for the lemon flavor and thus has no fermentable sugars. I usually pasteurize/steep the tea at 180F then add at kegging. I did this with the Raspberry Peach, not thinking about the fermentables in the fruit- darn glad I keg!

I'm also playing around with adding Ayurvedic herbs (Ashwagandha and Shatavri) to mead, but that experiment will be a while until it's drinkable.

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Old 06-07-2012, 01:49 AM   #4
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ok; so @ zapped: I'm trying to make tea beers. So regular beers augmented with the wonderful goodness of tea. Furthermore, the teas i mention are loose regular drinking in hot water kind (well I like to think i've found teas that are a bit better than regular, but don't we all).

And @ mattmcl, I just found out the existance of kombucha today, so pardon my ignorance, but because of this, your post didn't make a lot of sense. If you're referring to brewing beer with tea, I'd love it if you could elaborate on how you add. For this first batch I essentially steeped a big a$$ pot of tea and then proceeded to turn this large amount of tea into wort. After doing some reading and exploring in the literature after my first brew-day, I realized it might be better to 'dry hop' the tea but the proof is in the pudding and my 'pudding' won't be ready for another week, so I'll be sure to share when it is.

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Old 06-07-2012, 04:23 PM   #5
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Throughout the Middle Ages, meads and ales were bittered with agents other than hops. Hops is superior because of anti-bacterial properties as well as consistantly good flavor-- And would probably be deadly to kombucha- so I'm not sure why you were sent here. That said, bitter orange peels and coriander are used in wheat beers to good effect. I'm afraid for herbal teas, results would be on a case-by-case basis. Researching medieval beer recipes might provide some clues. Also Coors has put out an ice-tea beer in Canada, but I have no idea what the brewing process was.

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Old 06-07-2012, 04:31 PM   #6
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From Wikipeida: Gruit (sometimes grut) is an old-fashioned herb mixture used for bittering and flavoring beer, popular before the extensive use of hops. Gruit or grut ale may also refer to the beverage produced using gruit.

Gruit was a combination of herbs, some of the most common being mildly to moderately narcotic: sweet gale (Myrica gale), mugwort (Artemisia vulgaris), yarrow (Achillea millefolium), ground ivy (Glechoma hederacea), horehound (Marrubium vulgare), and heather (Calluna vulgaris). Gruit varied somewhat, each gruit producer including different herbs to produce unique flavors and effects. Other adjunct herbs included black henbane, juniper berries, ginger, caraway seed, aniseed, nutmeg, cinnamon, and even hops in variable proportions. Some gruit ingredients are now known to have preservative qualities.

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Old 06-07-2012, 05:04 PM   #7
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I brew and ferment a normal batch of beer. Then I add about 50 g of loose tea to a half gallon of water and hold it at 180F for 20 minutes. Then I pour this through a funnel with a filter screen into my keg, then rack the beer on top of that.

I could "dry hop," but this way the tea is pasteurized.

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Old 06-07-2012, 05:08 PM   #8
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Thanks. And what teas do you pair with which beers?

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