Fraoch, or heather ale, is a legendary unhopped beer from Scotland, said to date back to Pictish times.
experimental beers with a botanical twist
Filipendula ulmaria is a Eurasian plant, also naturalized in North America, that can be found in wet meadows and fens. “The whole herb possesses a pleasant taste and flavour, the green parts having a similar aromatic character to the flowers, leading to the use of the plant as a strewing herb, strewn on floors to give the rooms a pleasant aroma, and its use to flavour wine, beer, and many vinegars.” (Wikipedia) Meadowsweet possesses strong preservative qualities, which may explain its apparently widespread use in Neolithic and Bronze Age brewing in Britain.
Fascinating to see yarrow already in use as a brewing herb 3500 years ago. Here, it’s in combination with several bog plants: sweet gale, meadowsweet, cranberries and lingonberries.