In all my making, I’ve recently gotten more into home brewing (in the sense of beer), and I want to be able to share tasting notes as well as the recipes online.
The first I’ll share is a Dandelion Gruit.
This is a slightly modified version of Brooklyn Brew Shop‘s Dandelion Gruit.
I’ve wanted to make a gruit for a long time, thinking this is a good way to connect with my ancestors. Don’t know what a gruit is? It’s the mix of herbs used to bitter and preserve the beer, in this case: Dandelion leaves, peppercorns, and lemon peel. Or, the term gruit is often used to refer to a beer made without hops (the gruit mixture serves the same purpose that hops would). Before hops were introduced, all beers were made with an different herbal mixture, so gruits are, in essence, older recipes than most other types of beer.
I called it “Beòir nan Brìde” which means “Beer of (the Goddess) Brighid” because the Gàidhlig word for a dandelion is beàrnan-Brìde (or “indented (plant) of Brighid”). So, this is a little Gàidhlig pun for you.
Tasting notes: WAY too lemony. The original recipe calls for 1 lemon peel per gallon, but I would halve that next time. It’s very sweet, so some additional peppercorns might cut that. The dandelion leaves don’t do much to bitter it. All of that comes from the peppercorns and lemon peel, but the lemon is very overpowering, and adds a sourness rather than a bitterness. It tastes like a lemon-flavored wheat ale.
Will I make it again: I plan to, with the modifications listed above. It’s definitely a summer beer, though.
Here’s the recipe: http://www.brewersfriend.com/homebrew/recipe/view/200470/