gentian

Gentiana lutea (and related species), a fantastically bitter plant which should be added to beer only in very small quantities. “Gentian root is a common beverage flavouring for bitters. The soft drink Moxie contains gentian root. The French liqueur Suze is made with gentian. Americano apéritifs contain gentian root for bitter flavoring. It is an ingredient in the Italian liqueur Aperol. It is also used as the main flavor in the German after-dinner digestif called Underberg, and the main ingredient in Angostura bitters and Peychaud’s Bitters.” Thank you, Wikipedia.

Fraoch Porter

Fraoch Porter

Fraoch, or heather ale, is a legendary unhopped beer from Scotland, said to date back to Pictish times.

Wild Ginger and Lemon Verbena Wheat Beer

Wild Ginger and Lemon Verbena Wheat Beer

Might lemon verbena have anti-microbial properties? My one experiment with it was a success.

Alcoholic root beer, Prohibition-style

Alcoholic root beer, Prohibition-style

A light, refreshing, warming beverage with a very well-balanced flavor profile. Does it taste like root beer? Not really; there’s nothing caramelly about it. More like a spiced pilsner.

Meadowsweet, Heather and Gentian Gruit

Meadowsweet, Heather and Gentian Gruit

This was my other stand-out beer of the winter 2014-15 brewing season. The idea was to make a vaguely Neolithic-style ale inspired by archaeological findings in Britain.

Dark Lager with Mugwort

Dark Lager with Mugwort

An unhopped lager. The herbs are assertive but not overpowering, and the bitterness is fairly low.