May 29, 2015
Here's a (I think) fun topic to get things rolling here. This spring I made my first beer seasoned with a gruit instead of hops. It was a brown ale with the major flavor components being yarrow, wormwood, bay leaf, caraway and juniper berries.
I was really pleased with the way the flavors worked together, it has a bright, tangy flavor that's very different than a hop bitterness. It also tends to be right up in the front of the taste opposed to the way hops can sometimes come later and linger afterward. In the future I'm likely to make something similar, but include a dose of hops as well - maybe something like a small amount of Hallertau to stretch the flavor out but keep some spiciness going.
So - how do/will you build your gruit, and what are your thoughts on making gruits and hops play well together?
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