Adding heat

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chadkarol

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So I just brewed my first Christmas ale this past weekend. Cinnamon, cardamom, sweet orange peel, all spice, and clover. OG was 1.057 and it's down to 1.006 already. Tastes great. Good spice flavor but not over powering. I'm thinking, it would be great to add just a tiny bit of heat to this. Maybe just barely noticeable. I've never dealt with hot peppers with my brews. So any suggestions?
 

dyqik

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You could just go with black pepper - I've seen it in saisons before.
 

Mindsculptor

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You could just go with black pepper - I've seen it in saisons before.
If you add enough black pepper to appreciably increase heat, you'll overpower the beer with bitterness.

In my opinion, you should deseed and smoke a habanero. Add a quarter to the beer for a week in a secondary and you'll be good to go.
 
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chadkarol

chadkarol

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If you add enough black pepper to appreciably increase heat, you'll overpower the beer with bitterness.

In my opinion, you should deseed and smoke a habanero. Add a quarter to the beer for a week in a secondary and you'll be good to go.
What's the purpose of smoking the habanero? What if I throw it in there raw?
 

Mindsculptor

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What's the purpose of smoking the habanero? What if I throw it in there raw?
Smoking serves two purposes. One, it kills some of the heat. Two, it adds a savory component to the habanero's fruity flavor profile. You can, of course, add them in raw (I would advise only a half of one in either case), but I think you're going to bite off more than you can chew, if you'll pardon the pun.
 

Cyclman

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Do a bottle or two's worth, measure the weight of the pepper, and then scale up. You've got lots of flavors in there, you don't want it to muddle up things and ruin a batch.
 
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