experimental beers with a botanical twist

Fraoch Porter

Brewed on 17 May 2018 in London.

Fraoch, or heather ale, is a legendary unhopped beer from Scotland, said to date back to Pictish times. It has been revived in recent years by Williams Brothers Brewing Company, who say

From an ancient Gaelic recipe for “leann fraoich” (heather ale) it has been revived and reintroduced to the Scottish culture. Into the boiling bree of malted barley, sweet gale and flowering heather are added, then after cooling slightly the hot ale is poured into a vat of fresh heather flowers where it infuses for an hour before being fermented.

It’s a very good beer. This is not in any way an attempt to clone or imitate it (though it’s too bad I didn’t have any bog myrtle at the time). Nevertheless, it turned out floral and malty, as I’d hoped.

Recipe Details

Batch Size Boil Time IBU SRM Est. OG Est. FG ABV
12 L 60 min 0.0 IBUs 40.2 SRM 1.072 1.018 7.3 %

Fermentables

Name Amount %
Maris Otter Pale - UK 2 kg 51.48
Munich - UK 750 g 19.31
Caramalt 250 g 6.44
Crystal 140L - UK 250 g 6.44
Chocolate - UK 130 g 3.35
Special B - BE 130 g 3.35
Crystal Rye - UK 125 g 3.22
Dark Brown Sugar - US 250 g 6.44

Miscs

Name Amount min Type
yarrow leaves, dried 0.71 oz 0 min Boil Other
gentian root, dried 0.35 oz 0 min Boil Other
heather tips ("heather grains") 3.53 oz 0 min Secondary Other
meadowsweet leaves, dried 0.35 oz 0 min Secondary Other

Yeast

Name Lab Attenuation Temperature
Empire M-15 70% 17.78°C - 20.56°C
Fermentis Safale S-04 75% 17.78°C - 20.56°C

Notes

A heather-based gruit with yarrow, gentian, and meadowsweet. Floral and malty.


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