Hey guys Im doing my Christmas Ale this weekend. The recipe is 2-row some c-40, special roast and a touch of roasted barley for color and some wheat for head retention. I usually put some cinnamon ginger and orange zest into the last 5 min of the boil. Then I make a vodka tincture out of the same spices and add at kegging to get the flavor I want. I usually use the zest of 4 oranges(10 gallon batch) and 4 cinnamon sticks and 4 cubes of candied ginger in the boil and the same ratio in the tincture.
This year I found some great star anise from a spice market that smelled too good to pass up. Anyone have experience with this in beer? How much do you recommend? Has anyone blended it with similar spices before, how much of each?
I have considered making a separate tincture out of the star anise and dosing it at the end appropriately, but if there's some good advice out there it'd save me the trouble of making separate tinctures and allow me to add it to the boil directly as well since I like the flavor of both the boil and the tincture with my spices. I want it to blend well with the other spices and be one of those " I taste something in there and I think its anise but I cant put my finger on it" type of things.