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Home Brew Forums > Home Brewing Beer > Recipes/Ingredients > Anyone made a spruce beer? How does this recipe look?
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Old 06-18-2010, 01:09 AM   #1
billc68
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Default Anyone made a spruce beer? How does this recipe look?

Ok, so I started with a thread called "what can I make?"

I had some ingredients kicking around and a hankering to ferment something experimental. I got no replies so I I just winged it.
I originally had planned to make 1 gallon but when my OG was 1.090 I decided to water it down, I had no idea how much water to add to my spray malt extract.

Anyway, here is what I did for 2 Gallons:

1.1lbs of light spray malt (is this the same as DME?)
1 cup honey (1/2 lb I think)
2 oz Dextrose
46 spruce tips (fresh)
1 pinch Irish Moss
15 grams Cooper's ale yeast (little over 1/2 oz)

I started by boiling 1 gallon wort for 25 minutes with 40 spruce tips, then strained and cooled the wort with another 6 spruce tips. Didn't want to add and spruce to cooled wort as they were fresh, spiders and all. When I took a gravity reading I realize it would be quite sweet, so I doubled it with water and added 1 oz per gallon of dextrose to bring the OG back up a notch.


Added my yeast and now it is sitting in my basement at 66F, but temps will vary, it's supposed to be primitive so I won't worry about temps.

OG is 1.040



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Old 06-18-2010, 01:33 AM   #2
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You're going to get beer, that's for sure.


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Old 06-18-2010, 02:08 AM   #3
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Yes, Spruce was quite common apparently before hops became popular. I wonder if there is any preservative qualities in spruce?
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Old 06-18-2010, 02:12 AM   #4
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It sounds terrible, so it's probably dead on for a spruce recipe.

Ha Ha.

I may use some wormwort or heather or some other crazy gruit-like $hit someday, so good for you. Hope it turns out well.
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Old 06-18-2010, 02:45 AM   #5
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I had a spruce beer once. It reminded me of turpentine. Has anyone had one that tasted good?

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Old 06-18-2010, 03:56 AM   #6
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Yes, a version of Charlie Pap's I believe. My dad made it and we kicked the keg the night of my bachelor's party. No we weren't drunk not to care what we were drinking. It surprised the heck out of me that we floated her. I brewed up a plain jane blonde ale that I ended up having to take home to finish by myself. I've picked tips this spring and watch, I won't be able to come close to my old man's brew!
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Old 06-18-2010, 05:54 AM   #7
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I made a spruce pale ale recipe, pretty basic:

7.5 lbs Briess Light LME

1.25 lb Crystal 20 L
.25 Wheat Malt

1 oz Columbus @ 60

1 oz Cascade @ 15
1 oz Amarillo @ 15
11 oz Spruce Tips @ 15

1 oz Cascade @ Flameout
1 oz Amarillo @ Flameout

2 oz Centennial Dry Hop

Still carbing in the bottles, but it tasted great out of the fermenter when I was bottling. Reminded me of the Spruce Ale put out by Siltez Brewing in Oregon. Most recipes with spruce are holiday beers or porters, but I think they also go very well with beers in the APA/IPA spectrum.

The spruce tips aren't looking as fresh right now, I wish I had picked more to maybe try a Spruce Cascadian Dark Ale.
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Old 06-18-2010, 10:36 AM   #8
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I wish I had even a few hops... but oh well, we'll see how this one works out. Like I said the old guys made em without hops.
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Old 06-18-2010, 12:42 PM   #9
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I don't believe spruce has any preservative qualities, but if you have some of the herbs here: http://www.gruitale.com/botanicals_en.htm You could add them.

Keep on brewing my friends
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Old 06-18-2010, 12:50 PM   #10
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I made a spruce beer with NO HOPS and it turned out fantastic! Everyone, craft & BMC drinkers alike loved it. 5oz at 60 mins, 5oz at 20 mins, 5oz dry hop.


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