Homebrewers Association | AHA Forum

General Category => Ingredients => Topic started by: majorvices on May 16, 2010, 01:38:09 PM

Title: Elderberries
Post by: majorvices on May 16, 2010, 01:38:09 PM
Anyone ever used them? What do they taste like?
Title: Re: Elderberries
Post by: Hokerer on May 16, 2010, 03:16:01 PM
"Your mother was a hamster and your father smelt of elderberries."  Let the Monty Python jokes begin :)

Oh, and I have no idea what they taste like
Title: Re: Elderberries
Post by: a10t2 on May 16, 2010, 03:30:13 PM
I've only had them in pie, but they taste pretty much like blackberries from what I remember, maybe a little more tart. It's been several years.
Title: Re: Elderberries
Post by: yugamrap on May 17, 2010, 03:04:56 AM
I love elderberry pie!  Elderberries are definitely more tart than a blackberry, and have a drier sweetness.  They don't seem to have as concentrated a flavor as a red raspberry - they're somewhere between a blackberry and a red raspberry in that regard.
Title: Re: Elderberries
Post by: akr71 on May 17, 2010, 02:11:28 PM
I have nothing to add, except that I'm glad this thread was started.  I plan to secondary my mead on elderberries - its good to know what the flavor might add.

PS - Just introduced my 7 year old daughter to Monty Python's 'Quest for the Holy Grail' this weekend - she didn't find it as amusing as my wife & I (but she didn't hate it).
Title: Re: Elderberries
Post by: brew-witch on May 17, 2010, 04:45:04 PM
Elderberries can acually get a little sweet, I don't know if this is due to fermentation though, so your experience adding them to beer may be different than your standard berry pie.  As an herbalist I make elderberry tincture by soaking them in alcohol (50% vodka or 40% brandy) and it comes out like an elderberry wine with almost a sticky sweetness to it (not like syrup, but more like a strong fruity wine).  I would be curious as well to find out about the taste when added to beer.  Either way, you'll end up with a beer that's good for colds and flu!  ;D
Title: Re: Elderberries
Post by: majorvices on May 17, 2010, 04:52:55 PM
I consulted the best resource I have on using fruits and odd ingredients - Mosher's Radical Brewing - and the only thing he has to say about them is that some belgian brewers use them to "intensify color without adding any detectable flavor."
Title: Re: Elderberries
Post by: alikocho on May 18, 2010, 03:57:11 AM
Never used them in beer, but I have made wine with them. The wine, when properly aged (elderberries are very high in tannins) has a port like quality to it. Elderberries were once used to beef up port, before it was banned by the British, and Elderberry wine is occasionally refered to as "English Port", hence the Monty Python insult from the French.

One thing to be aware of is that you need to add them in the boil as they have a toxin in them that needs to be broken down with heat.
Title: Re: Elderberries
Post by: Hokerer on May 18, 2010, 02:21:29 PM
PS - Just introduced my 7 year old daughter to Monty Python's 'Quest for the Holy Grail' this weekend - she didn't find it as amusing as my wife & I (but she didn't hate it).

Maybe it's an age/gender thing.  My youngest was 11 or 12 when we introduced him and he still quotes it to this day.
Title: Re: Elderberries
Post by: yugamrap on May 24, 2010, 08:34:18 PM
PS - Just introduced my 7 year old daughter to Monty Python's 'Quest for the Holy Grail' this weekend - she didn't find it as amusing as my wife & I (but she didn't hate it).

Maybe it's an age/gender thing.  My youngest was 11 or 12 when we introduced him and he still quotes it to this day.

What did they think of the Castle Anthrax?  :o   That scene can lead to some awkward moments and back-pedaling explanations when viewing with youngsters.  I think younger kids sometimes don't quite get sarcasm or irony - both of which are key elements of Python humor.
Title: Re: Elderberries
Post by: majorvices on May 24, 2010, 09:01:10 PM
Hey! You bums get your own thread!!  ::) :P ;)
Title: Re: Elderberries
Post by: Hokerer on May 25, 2010, 12:29:51 AM
Hey! You bums get your own thread!!  ::) :P ;)

No, now go away or I shall taunt you a second time :)
Title: Re: Elderberries
Post by: akr71 on May 28, 2010, 02:36:15 PM
PS - Just introduced my 7 year old daughter to Monty Python's 'Quest for the Holy Grail' this weekend - she didn't find it as amusing as my wife & I (but she didn't hate it).

Maybe it's an age/gender thing.  My youngest was 11 or 12 when we introduced him and he still quotes it to this day.

What did they think of the Castle Anthrax?  :o   That scene can lead to some awkward moments and back-pedaling explanations when viewing with youngsters.  I think younger kids sometimes don't quite get sarcasm or irony - both of which are key elements of Python humor.

My wife fastforwarded the movie right about there - until Sir Lancelot came to resuce Sir Galahad.  ;D
Yep - the sarcasm and dry humor went completely over her head, but she did think the coconuts and killer rabbit were funny.  The Black Knight and Kinights who say Ni were mildy amusing for her.
Title: Re: Elderberries
Post by: 1vertical on May 29, 2010, 04:50:18 AM
Where do you get elderberries? Not out here for sure.
Title: Re: Elderberries
Post by: akr71 on May 30, 2010, 12:12:56 AM
Where do you get elderberries? Not out here for sure.

Don't know about Major, but my LHBS sells dried elderberries.
Title: Re: Elderberries
Post by: tubercle on May 30, 2010, 12:55:36 AM
 " And the Lord spake, saying, "First shalt thou take out the Holy Pin. Then shalt thou count to three, no more, no less. Three shall be the number thou shalt count, and the number of the counting shall be three. Four shalt thou not count, neither count thou two, excepting that thou then proceed to three. Five is right out. Once the number three, being the third number, be reached, then lobbest thou thy Holy Hand Grenade of Antioch towards thy foe, who, being naughty in my sight, shall snuff it."

  I have never tried elder berries in beer but I have elder berry wine. It is real close to raspberry.
Title: Re: Elderberries
Post by: Slowbrew on June 04, 2010, 07:44:10 PM
My Grandmother made elderberry wine.  the grove on our farm was full of them.  I never had any but my oldest brother's college friends drank all the bottles that we left in our basement.  Of course they would drink anything with alcohol in it.

It drives my wife nuts that the 4 kids sit at the dining room table popping off lines for the Holy Grail.  My son thought I should have seen his acapella choir director's face when he announced the next song was to be "Dona Nobis Pacem" and half the choir sang "Dona Nobis Requiem" and hit their heads with their music folders.

We love that movie. 
Title: Re: Elderberries
Post by: capozzoli on June 05, 2010, 10:57:37 PM
In Eastern Europe they use the flowers either to make tea, or fresh flowers to make syrup for sodas. They dont really usethe berries much.

Maybe the flowers would make a nice addition?
Title: Re: Elderberries
Post by: brew-witch on June 06, 2010, 10:01:48 PM
In Eastern Europe they use the flowers either to make tea, or fresh flowers to make syrup for sodas. They dont really usethe berries much.

Maybe the flowers would make a nice addition?
Even here in the states we use elder flowers for tea (for cold season: elderflowers, yarrow, & peppermint does the trick every time!)  Not sure how the flower flavor would hold up in a brew... there's not a lot of flavor and they are rather delicate.  Might be interesting though, homebrew cold remedy?
Title: Re: Elderberries
Post by: alikocho on June 07, 2010, 03:25:05 PM
In Eastern Europe they use the flowers either to make tea, or fresh flowers to make syrup for sodas. They dont really usethe berries much.

Maybe the flowers would make a nice addition?
Even here in the states we use elder flowers for tea (for cold season: elderflowers, yarrow, & peppermint does the trick every time!)  Not sure how the flower flavor would hold up in a brew... there's not a lot of flavor and they are rather delicate.  Might be interesting though, homebrew cold remedy?

In the UK the flowers and berries are used to make wines at different times of the year. The latter need some aging (at least a year) as they are very tannic, but can be cut with blackberries to drink the wine younger,

In Russia both flowers and berries are used to make wine, and both are infused with vodka to create flavoured spirits. With berries, add berries and a couple of tablespoons of sugar to vodka, shake and leave for three months, the  strain into bottles.
Title: Re: Elderberries
Post by: uthristy on June 07, 2010, 04:16:43 PM
I just had a bottle of Saison Cazeau yesterday and to be honest all I noticed was a flowery taste for lack of a better word. The wife said it had a dry tartness in the aftertaste but I really liked how clean it went down on a sweltering afternoon.

Made with Elderflowers

http://beeradvocate.com/beer/profile/10260/45413

(http://img.photobucket.com/albums/v243/whodoUthink/th_SaisonCazeau1.jpg) (http://smg.photobucket.com/albums/v243/whodoUthink/?action=view&current=SaisonCazeau1.jpg)

(http://img.photobucket.com/albums/v243/whodoUthink/th_SaisonCazeau2.jpg) (http://smg.photobucket.com/albums/v243/whodoUthink/?action=view&current=SaisonCazeau2.jpg)