From the HBD Archive
From: Dr. T. Andrews <tanner@ki4pv>
Subject: Re: A New Brew...
Date: 1989-02-04 13:35:01 GMT

) I've decided to try a batch of pop ...
Don't feel bad. Lots of people up north talk funny.

) Yesterday I bought some Ginger Ale extract.
How regrettable. Fresh ginger root may be had without that much
trouble. I make ginger beer exclusively from fresh ingredients.
Ginger root cost me $2/pound at market this week. Fresh limes may
cost you something unless you grow them.

) The standard recipe calls for cane sugar, ... champagne yeast.
Right. I have been using bread yeast, but am going to try some beer
yeast on my next batch. The cane sugar ferments very well indeed.
The bread yeast will have the stuff carbonated (and most of the cane
sugar consumed) after three days in the bottles. I don't know if
champagne yeast is a slower worker.

In fact, I would offer warning in case you missed it in rec.food.drink:
we're not kidding about the three days in the bottles. After the
third night, put the bottles in the refrigerator or be prepared to
deal with wet, sticky glass shards. Trust me.

) One of the recipe variations that came with the extract is to
) substitute honey in place of cane sugar.
I haven't tried this yet, mainly because my bulk honey isn't getting
here until tomorrow. (I mainly arranged for 30 pounds with mead in
mind, but a little bit of it for ginger beer won't be missed.)

) They say that honey is sweeter than regular sugar; so use less. ...
) honey is EXTREMELY fermentable.
Yes, so they say. However, the fermentation is very slow. Thus,
even though you use less, less of it is fermented, leaving you with
plenty of sweetness. (Speculation. Write again in a couple of
weeks, and I may have experience.)

Again, let me stress the importance of good bottles, and of putting
them in the refrigerator after three days. This is probably the most
important part of making the ginger beer, because you can't drink it
if it is spattered around the closet with glass shards. Three days.
It's a magic number. (I have a second fridge here, in the utility
room, which is called the "beer fridge". It is generally full of
bottles of beer, and with the entire latest batch of ginger beer less
what has been consumed.)

Dr. T. Andrews, Systems
CompuData, Inc. DeLand
--
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