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Old 01-17-2011, 09:32 PM   #1
steppenwolph
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Default Henbane in beer?

According to this article on Iron Age beer brewing technique (a very interesting read, including how they malted barley in trenches dug in the ground) claims that ancient Celts used 'henbane' ,among other herbs, in their beer (this being prior to the use of hops) and that this would make the beer more intoxicating. Does anyone know any more about this? Anybody tried it? I wonder what flavor the henbane would add. I would be interested in giving this a try if I knew that the 'intoxicating' effect of the henbane wasn't a symptom of the henbane trying to kill me. Also, their beer was a sour beer, using some kind of lactic acid bacteria in their fermentation. And according to the Roman emperor Julian, the beer smells like 'billy goat.' So maybe duplicating the exact recipe isn't a good idea. But the extra kick from the henbane sounds like fun, if it isn't poisonous.


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Old 01-17-2011, 09:35 PM   #2
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http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Hyoscyamus_niger

I like my beer sans hallucinations, but to each his own.
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Old 01-17-2011, 09:47 PM   #3
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Those ancient Celts must have been a tough bunch! The henbane looks a trifle too toxic for me to play with! Still, if I ever want to hear an oracle from Apollo, I'll know what to brew.
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