Smithsonian and NPR had small segments about spruce beer recently. I have also seen a few threads on here about use of spruce tips similar to hop additions.
I searched around and found this recipe. I am really interested in making this, I like the root beer type flavor, plus spruce, plus historical significance.
If anyone has any tips or suggestions about the ingredients, especially yeast variety to use, I would greatly appreciate it.
4 1/2 cups water
1 1/2 cups molasses
2 ounces sassafras root, chopped
3 tablespoons chopped fresh gingerroot
3/4 teaspoon oil of spruce
3 cups dark brown sugar
2 tablespoons maltodextrin (optional)
Combine the water, molasses, sassafras, ginger, and spruce oil in a large saucepan. Bring to a simmer over medium heat, stirring occasionally; let simmer, uncovered, for 5 minutes.
Blend the brown sugar and maltodextrin (if using), and gradually add the mixture to the simmering root infusion, stirring until the sugar dissolves. Then remove from the heat, let cool to room temperature, and strain.
This syrup will keep in the refrigerator for up to 2 months.
The syrup volume is good for 1 gallon, so I need to upscale. I will probably use this thread
to figure out spruce additions maybe in lieu of spruce oil in the syrup.