From the HBD Archive
From: bose!chuck@uunet.UU.NET (Chuck Cox)
Subject: Re: Rootbeer
Date: 1990-01-08 16:30:04 GMT

A while back Mark Freeman asked for a rootbeer recipe.
I recently made a half-barrel of rootbeer for my local beer bar,
The Sunset Tap & Grille in Boston.
It may be illegal to sell homebrew, but it is ok to sell homemade rootbeer
(as far as I know).

Chuck's Homemade Ozark Rootbeer (15 gal recipe)

2 oz Birch Beer Extract
10 oz Root Beer Extract
1 lb Honey
1 cup Blackstrap Molasses
1 cup Grade B Maple Syrup
1 gal Sugar (approx 8 lb)

Approximate total cost of ingredients: $25.50

Mix all ingredients in a keg, add water to fill keg, carbonate, drink.

Some comments regarding the recipe:

I thought the molasses taste was a bit harsh, I will try regular
molasses next time and perhaps use a little less as well.

I will try substituting 2 oz of sasparilla extract for 2 oz of the rootbeer

In any case, you can mix the ingredients to your taste.

This recipe produces a strong tasting rootbeer with about half the sweetness
of most commercial rootbeers (warning: you will want to clean your draft
lines after dispensing this root beer, it leaves a flavor behind).
It was extremely popular with the underage
college crowd because the rootbeer was served just like draft beer.

You can obtain the extracts in 2 oz bottles at most homebrewing shops.
In addition, you can buy bulk extracts through restaurant suppliers,
the one brand I know of is 'Universal'.

While I artifically carbonated my rootbeer (for both legal & practical reasons)
you could ferment it to get carbonation.
There was an alcoholic rootbeer at the Great American Beer Festival,
I talked with the brewmaster who made it, and it is similar to my recipe,
but with the addition of a substantial amount of malt extract to increase
the fermentables. His rootbeer was in the 6% alcohol by weight range,
and tasted very good on it's own, but didn't go well with drinking lots
of regular beer.

BTW: The Sunset sold out of my rootbeer in about a week, but I will make
some more as soon as a tap becomes available.

- Chuck Cox - america's fastest beer judge -

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