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Thread: Honey in Beer?

  1. #1
    Join Date
    Jul 2010
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    Default Honey in Beer?

    I've made one batch of Honey Kolsh and while it was a good beer there was relatively little honey flavor in it. I even added extra to get a stronger flavor and simply ended up adding more fermenting and ending with a stronger end product...not really complaining about that.

    I'm just wondering if there might be a trick in getting a stronger honey flavor without the fermentables in some way. I can add grains to add sweetness, but that is a grain sweetness, not honey.

    Any ideas?

    ~Matt

  2. #2
    Join Date
    May 2011
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    Pensacola, FL
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    Default Re: Honey in Beer?

    Generally, the earlier in the brewing process that you add then honey the less flavor you'll get. All the flavor is driven off during the boil. So try adding your honey late in the boil, or at knockout. You might also consider priming your bottles/keg with honey instead of using malt extract or sugar.

    Brian
    Hobby Beekeeper - Second Year - Two Hives

  3. #3
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    Default Re: Honey in Beer?

    Honey ferments completely out, so having honey character persist is difficult. To address this, creative maltsters have developed honey malt, which requires mashing (all-grain brewing or at least a minimash) which leaves a honeylike character in the beer. It's actually pretty good, but it's not really honey.
    Bees, brews and fun
    in Lyons, CO

  4. #4
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    Default Re: Honey in Beer?

    I'll have to try both of those suggestions the next time I brew this.

    Add the honey later in the brew and add a bit of the honey malt. The brew was quite good already, just personally would like a bit of a stronger honey taste.

    ~Matt

  5. #5
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    Default Re: Honey in Beer?

    How about brewing the beer. Pasturizing your honey in some water and back sweeten in the secondary with the pasturized honey water and add sorbate to stop the fermenation. Then force carbonate

  6. #6
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    Default Re: Honey in Beer?

    Why couldn't you just stabilize with sorbate and sulfite, add the honey to taste and force carbonate? The honey taste would change but it wouldn't get fermented away.

  7. #7
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    Default Re: Honey in Beer?

    Quote Originally Posted by Vance G View Post
    Why couldn't you just stabilize with sorbate and sulfite, add the honey to taste and force carbonate? The honey taste would change but it wouldn't get fermented away.
    isn't this what I had posted.

  8. #8
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    Default Re: Honey in Beer?

    if you naturally carbonate, most yeast will cease at 20psi, I'm told. As long as you are kegging, you can pull a portion out, warm it, add honey, replace in the keg.

    Using less obvious hops, the honey can be notice more, as well.
    My wife says I have ADD, but, hey look- a chicken!

  9. #9
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    Default Re: Honey in Beer?

    I like to add a pint at the end of the boil. Stir in, no problem! I'm talking about a 5 gallon batch.

  10. #10
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    Default Re: Honey in Beer?

    as an after thought of brewing today; if you put a mellow honey, in a robust beer it will get lost in the details vs a mellow beer getting a robust honey.
    My wife says I have ADD, but, hey look- a chicken!

  11. #11
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    Default Re: Honey in Beer?

    Tried a bottle of Rogue Honey Kolsch this weekend.




    I was a little disappointed that it didn't have a stronger honey profile. It's a very mild, light beer. Given that the honey notes are so soft, it weights in at almost 6% ABV. I'm sure it's difficult to have a prominent honey flavor while keeping the ABV's low. On the bottle it says:

    "Dedicated to Bees - Situated just across from 40 acres of Rogue hops, 119 Colonies of bees were carefully kept and fed and the honey was uncapped, extracted, filtered and finally infused into a refreshing Honey Kolsch Ale."

    "Brewed using 10 ingredients: Rogue Barley Farm Dare & Risk Malts; Wheat, DextraPils & Aciduated Malts; Rogue Hopyard Honey & Wild Flower Honey; Alluvial Hops; Free Range Coastal Water & Kolsch Yeast."
    Regards, Barry

  12. #12
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    Rader, Greene County, Tennessee, USA
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    Default Re: Honey in Beer?

    Very nice!


    But .... brewed with " .....Free Range Coastal Water ...."


    What does that mean ... rain? Not constrained by any of those evil water pipes?
    Graham
    --- Practical reality trumps philosophy!

  13. #13
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    Default Re: Honey in Beer?

    Local brewery out of Gainesville, FL ...Swamp Head Brewery... has Wild Night that's brewed with Tupelo honey. Had my first glass this past weekend and in the head there was a very distinct honey flavor left on the lips. Very nice, smooth brew with a reported 5.9% ABV.

  14. #14

    Default Re: Honey in Beer?

    Quote Originally Posted by Barry View Post
    119 Colonies of bees were carefully kept and fed
    119 hives in one yard? Fed?! Might explain the light color and lack of honey profile.
    Dan www.boogerhillbee.com
    Experience is a hard teacher because she gives the test first, the lesson afterwards

  15. #15
    Join Date
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    Default Re: Honey in Beer?

    Yeah, I stopped for a moment when I read that. Do you really want to advertise this way that you fed your bees?!
    Regards, Barry

  16. #16

    Default Re: Honey in Beer?

    Quote Originally Posted by Barry View Post
    Yeah, I stopped for a moment when I read that.
    They'd have been wise to get a beekeeper to edit the text before going to print.....I'm thinkin'.
    Dan www.boogerhillbee.com
    Experience is a hard teacher because she gives the test first, the lesson afterwards

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