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Spyk'd

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Anyone ever come across Gruit? The recipe looks kind of interesting...I may give it a shot as a truly historical brew:

Gruit




:mug:
 

hunteraw

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i was just thinking about this today. looks like the possibilities are just about limitless, as far as what you can add. if you haven't yet, read through the descriptions of some of the commercial examples for an idea of what might and might not work.

seems like you need an herb or two for bittering (have to balance that malt sweetness), and then another couple for flavor.

i'm sure there are a few gruit-brewers on the form that could share their experiences. what has turned out best?
 
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Spyk'd

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Nice link! I like the side effects listed on the website:

Historically, it has been said to stimulate the mind, create euphoria, and enhance sexual drive.

Now I'm definitely going to brew this!

:D
 
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Spyk'd

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I've been sourcing out the ingredients and have found everything I need except the marsh rosemary...this may be a stumbling block for this style.:(


Anyone find a source for marsh rosemary?


:confused:
 

NEPABREWER

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Ive been kicking around the idea of using alternative bittering ingredients, but didn't have much of a starting point. Now I do.
 

Beer Snob

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hunteraw

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this idea is too obvious for someone to have not tried it already:

anyone ever brewed a "simon & garfunkel gruit"???

what would it include? well, parsley, sage, rosemary and thyme, of course! anyone have any idea how that combination of herbs would play together in a beer, rather than in a song?
 
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Spyk'd

Spyk'd

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Naturally this is what I thought of when I started this thread...:confused:



...actually, I thought of GRUIT and provided a link in case you didn't know what is was...





...apparently you didn't link and you do not know what it is, otherwise you'd know your "herbs" are unacceptable. :mad:


We all like to have fun, now go have fun on another thread....thanks!:cross:
 

hunteraw

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sorry, i didn't realize homebrewing was all about staying rigidly within the style guidelines.

"not historically accurate" for sure, but "unacceptable?" let's keep it friendly :mug: i found your link very interesting, and i'm glad you enjoyed the one i shared, too! ;)
 
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Spyk'd

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Ok, ok, perhaps that was a bit harsh. I do feel that we are homebrew brethren and need to keep it friendly. Sorry!:eek:

I guess I was just grumpy from having to tear out drywall and drywall screws until 1:00am!:rolleyes:


I really just want this thread to be taken seriously and not degenerate into mindless banter; although your comment was amusing...


On a related topic, I got an email back from Wild Weeds and they say that there will be a summer crop of Marsh Rosemary and they should be restocked by the end of the summer.



I just hope that leaves enough time for it to mellow for Christmas...

...I guess there's always New Years...

...and Mardi Gras!:tank:

Peace:mug:
 

yankeeharp

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Spyk'd said:
Anyone ever come across Gruit?
I make it every day, as a perpetual brew. "Gruit" is the flavoring. Most gruit makers didn't write down their recipes (trade secret) so most modern gruit recipes are based on the few that were written down, historical. But you can put whatever you like into your own gruit. I use white birch, star anise, cloves, licorice root, nutmeg and ginger. I grow artemesias/wormwood/mugwort, but I rarely use it because I brew ale for the flavor and nutrition and am indifferent to the drug effect.
 
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hunteraw said:
this idea is too obvious for someone to have not tried it already:

anyone ever brewed a "simon & garfunkel gruit"???

what would it include? well, parsley, sage, rosemary and thyme, of course! anyone have any idea how that combination of herbs would play together in a beer, rather than in a song?
ICK! I think that would taste more like it belongs in a bowl with some chicken and noodles rather than a cool, carbonated beverage. If you were to do this, keep the sage and thyme VERY subtle.
 

Carne de Perro

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The gist of the Jan 2006 BYO article on gruit beer is that pretty much any herb(s) can be used in the brewing so a Simon n Garfunkel would be in style. This beer was brewed with whatever you found growing in the woods and fields so anything goes. (Might want to keep it easy on the thyme though). If you wanted to get that "medival" flavor you could add some roasted barley to simulate the imprecise drying methods used at the time (open flames?). The article also mentioned that sugar shouldn't be used in an "authentic" gruit, but I say go with whatever works.
 

yankeeharp

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Yuri_Rage said:
ICK! I think that would taste more like it belongs in a bowl with some chicken and noodles rather than a cool, carbonated beverage. If you were to do this, keep the sage and thyme VERY subtle.
Agreed. If you want to make ale to match a song, I think you'd be much better off with the old English ballad:
My song is well sung and I'll sing you a vow
That he is a knave that drinketh now
Nose, nose, nose
And who gave thee thy jolly red nose?
Cinnamon and ginger, nutmeg and clove
And that gave me my jolly red nose​
 

yankeeharp

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Carne de Perro said:
This beer was brewed with whatever you found growing in the woods and fields so anything goes. (Might want to keep it easy on the thyme though). If you wanted to get that "medival" flavor you could add some roasted barley to simulate the imprecise drying methods used at the time (open flames?). The article also mentioned that sugar shouldn't be used in an "authentic" gruit, but I say go with whatever works.
Another herb you might want to use of for that authentic old-time flavor is ground ivy. This is a common lawn weed whose leaves look something like African violet. If you've ever tried to get it out of your lawn, you'll be glad to know it's good for something :). From the botanical:
The whole plant possesses a balsamic odour and an aromatic, bitter taste, due to its particular volatile oil, contained in the glands on the under surface of the leaves. It was one of the principal plants used by the early Saxons to clarify their beers, before hops had been introduced, the leaves being steeped in the hot liquor. Hence the names it has also borne; Alehoof and Tunhoof. It not only improved the flavour and keeping qualities of the beer, but rendered it clearer. Until the reign of Henry VIII it was in general use for this purpose.

I agree with you about sugar. Ancient folks used malted grains for sugar because that was the only sugar they could get. I use a combination of sugar syrup and malt extract most of the time because that's what easy for me, but I've used bread crumbs and white sugar while travelling and it still does the job. Right now I have a very nice pumpkin ale I made from liquid I strained from the pumpkin I steamed for my pumpkin pie.

 

Mirage

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Here's to resurecting dead threads (call me Dr. Frankenstein) but I was wondering how your Gruit came out. I also found that recipe and thought it looked good. I tried a Gruit last night and the ingredients that were listed were: malted barley, wheat, oats, belgium yeast, herbs (whatever that may be), sweet gale, yarrow, rosemary, licorise, and nettles. That reciped looked close to that.
 

Freezeblade

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I've done a gruit with Yarrow, Bog Myrtal, and Wormwood for bittering, it turns out good, but very floral, and not hops floral. As for finding marsh rosemary, it does not grow nativly in North america, and the replacement is Labrador tea, which you can find in some herb shops. I'm planning another gruit for christmas I think, something along the lines of a spiced winter warmer, because that's a spiced style to start, and hops aren't the main focus of the flavor.
 

Mirage

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That sounds good. Thanks for the info on wild rosemary. I will look into the alternative.
 

bierhaus15

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I brewed a gruit ale a while ago, using a recipe I found in an old scots-gaelic recipe book. It included yarrow (or feild hops as they call it) sweet gale, rosemary, and heather sprigs. The stuff tasted pretty good going down and smelled nice enough, but its aftertaste was similar to that of a hippie shampoo... even my BMC friends wouldnt touch it. I watered my lawn with the remaining stuff...

Though if someone makes a batch that actually tastes good, please tell.

Cheers!
 

Willie3

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I have done some research on gruit and basically it comes down to three herbs: Juniper Berries, Elderberries, and rosemary. Juniper Berries were a source of yeast, as it settled on the berry randomly and openly. The reason thaqt gruit is thought to be these three specific herbs was that these herbs were taxed by the government and only certain deligates were appointed to grow them for brewin purposes and that records dating back only mention these for brewing. This is also partly the reason hops were forbidden in brewing.

However, the use of other herbs and hops were used interchangibly as a result of the lack of Gov't regulatory reach. They could not control individual households on what they included in their own personal brew. Eventually, regulations regarding purity (Rheinhotsgebhot) and health as well as importation of beer from other countries (and the ease of growing hops in Germania) helped hops become the mainstay in the industry.

As you will see I use some other herbs as well. Here is an awesome Stout recipe brewed with Gruit taken from gruitale.com :: Gruit Ale & Unhopped Beers, Brewing Herbs and Recipes. It is a cool site as well. Check it out.

8 1/2 lbs pale 2-row malt
3/4 lb caramel 120 L malt
1/2 lb chocolate malt
3/4 lb Weyermann Carafa II malt
1/2 lb roasted barley
1/2 lb Weyermann pale wheat malt
1 lb oat flakes

Extra sugars

2 lbs wildflower honey
1 c blackstrap molasses for bottling

Herbs
1 1/2 oz dried mugwort tops and leaves (roughly three packed cups)
1/2 oz licorice root
1/2 oz roasted chicory root
1/2 oz dried chamomile flowers
1/4 oz dried lemon grass
1/4 oz dried sweet orange peel
1/2 fl oz vanilla extract
1 T Indian sarsaparilla (Hemidesmus indicus)

Yeast

Wyeast Scottish Ale

- WW
 

Ecnerwal

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Not exactly gruit, other than by the "put anything you like in and call it gruit" "rule", but I'm working on a ginger ale/beer (not soft-drink - fermented) - have found numerous recipes for hopped ales with ginger, but thinking in terms of an ale where ginger is the contrast to the malt, not hops. Few if any other herbs/spices - thus not "bittered".

Not actually "hop crisis" inspired - just something I'd be interested to try - still debating 2 gallons test .vs. winging it and making 5.

I can think of a lot of herbed things that would be pretty revolting, IMO.

I'd reconsider the blackstrap for bottling on that recipe above - another post today mentioned ruining a beer (that had tasted good before bottling) by using molasses to prime with.
 
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