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Old 06-08-2011, 10:52 PM   #1
badnewsblair
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Default Tea addition at bottling time

Hi folks,

I just want to start off by saying thank you to everyone for HBT such a great resource for new brewers! This place rocks!

I brewed up a partial mash version of BierMuncher's Black Pearl Porter to bring to a friend's wedding and I was hoping to get it bottled soon. I have been toying with the idea of adding some chocolate mint tea flavour but I am unsure as to whether I should soak the tea bags in vodka or simply brew a strong pot of tea as per usual for the tea addition.

Reading some of the other threads on here it seems that most people brew their tea additions and use vodka when adding other spices. If I were to go the vodka route, how long should I soak the tea? Would a day or two be enough or should I just stick with brewed tea? Does anyone have any advice?

Cheers!
Blair

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Old 06-08-2011, 11:17 PM   #2
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I think the tea would give you better extraction of flavors, so perhaps it's a matter of how strong you want the chocolate mint to come out. Flavors are extracted faster by hot liquids, so while the vodka would extract them as well, it'd require more time to work. If you really prefer to go the vodka route, I'd suggest just steeping them for a day and sampling it to see where the flavor profile has gotten. Add more time as needed .

If you'd prefer a more concrete timetable, I'd recommend going with the tea method instead.

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Old 06-09-2011, 02:42 AM   #3
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The reason alcohol is usually used to soak many spices/herbs has to do with the fact that alcohol efficiently extracts essential oils from them - think vanilla extract. This is in comparison to coffee and tea, which are designed to be extracted by hot water. So I would (and in the case of coffee, I have) make the tea to the strength you want it, and then add it little by little to the bottling bucket until you get the flavor you want, and bottle.

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Old 06-09-2011, 11:48 AM   #4
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I was thinking also of adding Tea flavor to the Beer , but I noticed that there would be some Tannin extracted by alcohol , too .

Then I thought myself "Tannin in Beer ?!" .

How is it possible to extract more Tea flavor instead of Tannin ?

Hector

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Old 06-09-2011, 04:40 PM   #5
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Typical tannins (read: those present in beer grain) aren't soluble at temperatures below 170F. I'm not certain that the same applies to tea leaves (it would certainly depend on the type of tea, if nothing else), but I think you'd be best off steeping at temperatures in the 150-160F range if you want to avoid much tannic extraction.

And of course, more tea flavor will simply come from longer steeping time at temperature, although the extraction rate will gradually decline as the leaves are drained of their flavor. More tea bags/leaves would be the best way to get a lot of flavor in relatively short time.

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Old 06-09-2011, 06:29 PM   #6
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Thanks for the replies guys. I think I am going to go with the brewed tea leaves instead of soaking them in vodka.

Cheers!
Blair

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Old 06-09-2011, 07:49 PM   #7
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Quote:
Originally Posted by smagee View Post
I think you'd be best off steeping at temperatures in the 150-160F range if you want to avoid much tannic extraction.
And of course, more tea flavor will simply come from longer steeping time at temperature
If you mean steeping in the Wort before boiling , I think after 60-Minutes-Boil there would be no Tea flavor left in the Wort .

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Old 06-09-2011, 10:10 PM   #8
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Good point, but yes, I meant steeping in water. I'd never recommend adding the tea to the boil for that very reason.

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