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Old 11-13-2008, 02:00 AM   #1
Apr 2008
Posts: 60

So I've been brewing standard ales for a while now, and finally decided to get a little experimental when I came across a bag of Thai palm sugar in an ethnic market. Does anybody have any experience with this sugar? thoughts? What do you think of my proposed Thai inspired blonde?:

10 lbs. German Pils malt
2.5 lbs. German Vienna malt
1 lb. Thai Palm Sugar
10 oz. Gambrinus Honey Malt
6 oz. Weyerman CaraRed

60 mins- 1.5 oz Hallertau
30 mins- .5 oz Hallertau, .5 oz Tettnanger
5 mins.-.5 oz Tettnanger

Boil additions:
an undetermined amount of crystalized ginger, lemon grass, and kaffir lime leaves to the boil.

ps 65% efficiency

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Old 11-13-2008, 02:10 AM   #2
Zymurgrafi's Avatar
Feb 2007
Posts: 2,427
Liked 10 Times on 10 Posts

No experience with it myself. How does it taste? Smell? Randy Mosher discusses using sugars such as this in Radical Brewing.

I might suggest adding the sugar towards the end or even at flame-out to try and preserve any aromatics/flavors it may have. In the end it may be very subtle but I think different sugars do contribute unique characters.

I just heard about a Brewery that makes a belgian triple with rice and Thai basil. Guess that is why your brew caught my attention. Sounds like it could be quite good. Good luck determining the herbs/spices amounts. That can always be tricky. May take a few batches or you may hit it just right. Take notes! You could also steep some of the ingredients like a tea and add to the fermenter later if the flavor is not where you want it.

Bristle Bros. Brewing

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Old 11-13-2008, 12:15 PM   #3
Bob's Avatar
Nov 2007
Christiansted, St Croix, USVI, US Virgin Islands
Posts: 3,927
Liked 144 Times on 105 Posts

Interesting experiment! It's always fun to experiment with new tastes.

I contend, however, that you're never going to be able to tell the flavor contributions with all of those specialty malts in the grist, much less all those spices. Don't get me wrong - I think the beer will be fantastic as written! All I'm saying is that if you're looking to explore what impact palm sugar will have on beer, you must seek simplicity in the ingredients.

Pick ingredients with which you're very comfortable and familiar, the flavors of which you know you can identify. That's the only reliable way to tell - if you can say, "Okay, that flavor is the Maris Otter, this flavor is the Fuggles, the other flavor is the Windsor; so this out-of-place flavor must be from the sugar."

It's either that or brew a recipe you've brewed time and again, a recipe your taste buds know inside-out, where you know you'll be able to spot any difference, and add the odd ingredient to that.

But hey, I totally dig it if that's not what you're after! Like I said, your proposed recipe sounds like it comes from the whackjobs at Dogfish Head - and that's a compliment!

Fort Christian Brewpub
St Croix, US Virgin Islands

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Old 11-13-2008, 01:42 PM   #4
Tonedef131's Avatar
Feb 2008
Fort Wayne
Posts: 1,891
Liked 32 Times on 17 Posts

I used a pound of it in a rice lager and the flavor contribution was minimal. It will also ferment out extremely dry, so you may wish to mash a bit higher than normal.

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