This is a great recipe to use hop oils with an extra bonus cocktail recipe at the end. The Ginger Beer recipe is a hopped up variation of a recipe I found in the book "Sacred and Herbal Healing Beers" by Stephen Buhner. An excellent book and well worth the read if you are even slightly interested in beer.
It is a very basic and easy to brew recipe. The result is a crisp, dry, and slightly alcoholic beverage with a nice hint of ginger up front and light lingering flavor of cider and ginger. Very nice and I liked the amount of ginger. Though some prefer a more pronounced ginger presence and maybe some bite. The recipe is a good skeleton to hang whatever additional flavors you may like on.
Originally the recipe does not call for steeping grains or hops extract, those were my additions. Having brewed the original version a few times, I wanted to try to add a more beer like taste and mouth feel. Here is what I came up with. I happen to be sipping one right now and it is quite tasty.
- Steep 150g of 20L Crystal malt in 1.5 quarts of spring water at 150-155F for 30 minutes
- To your strained liquid add
- 1.5 ounces of fresh ginger root, crushed
- 12 ounces Light Brown Sugar
- 1 Tbsp. Cream of Tartar
- Add enough water to bring volume to 1 gallon
- Be certain all sugar is completely dissolved. Bring to a boil.
- Boil for 10 minutes
- Turn off the flame and add 1ml of Citra varietal hops extract and stir to incorporate
- Cool to 80F
- Strain and pour into gallon fermentation vessel
- Add yeast and airlock
Ferment at temps between 75 and 80F for 7 to 10 days and bottle.
For bottling, a simple syrup of 2/3 cup cane sugar was boiled in 1 cup spring water for 10 minutes. Bottle condition for 7 to 10 days. Refrigerate and enjoy at your leisure.
The resulting beverage is lightly carbonated, golden in color and very tasty. A slight head forms and dissipates quickly. This isn't too gingery a ginger beer either, but there's just enough ginger to know it's there. There's an excellent balance provided by the hops that brings a good hoppy nose with a little grapefruit flavor after the sweet ginger. All that with a back drop of a slightly cidery, dry malt beer flavor making for a crisp and refreshing, easy drinker. This is an instant favorite.
If you're looking to take it to the next level, then look no further than a Dark and Stormy. Pour your ginger beer over ice with a squeez of lime and shot of rum.