Author Topic: Acorn beer  (Read 911 times)

Offline cspence

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Acorn beer
« on: December 23, 2015, 02:31:43 PM »
I've googled a bit for acorn beer, and found a few discussions but not much about results. I did find a post (not in this forum, I think), where the guy made a small batch, said it was bitter, and hoped it would smooth out over time. I had to wonder whether he tried to remove the tannin, but he didn't give much detail. In any case I'm trying it now. It's fermenting right now, so the results aren't in yet, but here are links to my blog, describing what I've done: http://acornbeeretc.blogspot.com/2015/10/introduction.html
http://acornbeeretc.blogspot.com/2015/10/acorn-beer-beginnings.html
http://acornbeeretc.blogspot.com/2015/12/acorns-to-wort.html

Clay

Offline curtism1234

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Re: Acorn beer
« Reply #1 on: December 23, 2015, 03:00:16 PM »
I've never heard of it, but I would think acorns are one of the least desirable nuts out there for human consumption.

Offline goschman

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Re: Acorn beer
« Reply #2 on: December 23, 2015, 03:02:43 PM »
I've never heard of it, but I would think acorns are one of the least desirable nuts out there for human consumption.

Ha! Now that's funny. I don't think I have ever consumed an acorn myself.
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Offline cspence

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Re: Acorn beer
« Reply #3 on: December 23, 2015, 03:03:10 PM »
Well, supposedly Indians ate a lot, Koreans use acorn flower (maybe heavily processed), and we tried roasting some with oil and salt. They taste fine, but they're too hard to use like regular nuts.

Offline cspence

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Re: Acorn beer
« Reply #4 on: December 23, 2015, 03:09:01 PM »
I should add that they don't seem to be too oily, which I think would be a problem with some kinds of nuts. (They were also free.)

Offline chinaski

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Re: Acorn beer
« Reply #5 on: December 26, 2015, 06:54:23 PM »
Somewhere I read an article about making acorn flour.  They have to be soaked a long time to leach out the high levels of tannins in them.  I'm not sure if the article mentioned anything other than water soaking with lots of changes.

Offline cspence

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Re: Acorn beer
« Reply #6 on: December 27, 2015, 05:42:07 AM »
Yes, I talk about tannins a little in the blog (links given above). I soaked the acorns, with several changes of water. These acorns did not have a lot of tannin in them to begin with, so I'm not sure the soaking was necessary, in this case. Apparently tannin level varies a lot among oak species. The Eastern white oak in our front yard seems to have very mild (low-tannin) acorns.

Offline b-hoppy

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Re: Acorn beer
« Reply #7 on: December 27, 2015, 08:50:02 AM »


Ha! Now that's funny. I don't think I have ever consumed an acorn myself.

If you've ever tried chewing on a hop pellet and found it to be a less than pleasurable experience, you certainly won't want to chew on an acorn . . . unless you're into that sort of thing.  I've done the hop pellet thing a few times but only once with an acorn, haha.

Offline cspence

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Re: Acorn beer
« Reply #8 on: December 27, 2015, 10:19:16 AM »
Quote
...you certainly won't want to chew on an acorn...

It depends on the kind of acorn. The ones we collected have a very low tannin level, maybe no more than regular walnuts. My wife says that tree is an Eastern white oak. OTOH, the ones in the backyard, that my wife says are from a pin oak, are just as you suggest: very, very bitter. I didn't use any of those in the beer.

Offline PrettyBeard

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Re: Acorn beer
« Reply #9 on: December 28, 2015, 09:46:26 AM »
Excellent information.  I was playing with a couple cups of raw chestnuts this weekend with the intention of doing a similar brown ale.  This will definitely be useful.

Offline cspence

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Re: Acorn beer
« Reply #10 on: December 28, 2015, 08:45:04 PM »
Excellent information.  I was playing with a couple cups of raw chestnuts this weekend with the intention of doing a similar brown ale.  This will definitely be useful.

Thanks.

BTW, I transferred to the secondary today, and drank the sample for the gravity reading. It tasted like brown ale, with no acorn flavor that I noticed. Could be worse. It's not done yet, so the beer or my taste buds could change.

A different procedure I may try some day is to roast the acorns and let them soak in the secondary. That works well for coffee beans, even dark-roasted so they're oily. Obviously it's a very different ingredient.

Offline morticaixavier

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Re: Acorn beer
« Reply #11 on: December 29, 2015, 07:27:13 AM »
Excellent information.  I was playing with a couple cups of raw chestnuts this weekend with the intention of doing a similar brown ale.  This will definitely be useful.

Thanks.

BTW, I transferred to the secondary today, and drank the sample for the gravity reading. It tasted like brown ale, with no acorn flavor that I noticed. Could be worse. It's not done yet, so the beer or my taste buds could change.

A different procedure I may try some day is to roast the acorns and let them soak in the secondary. That works well for coffee beans, even dark-roasted so they're oily. Obviously it's a very different ingredient.

I think If you roasted the acorns you might get better flavor contribution from them. I don't know exactly what an accord tastes like but I find with many nuts roasting brings out flavors that just aren't that apparent in the raw nut.
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Offline cspence

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Re: Acorn beer
« Reply #12 on: January 12, 2016, 08:18:52 PM »
So, it's ready. Here's how it came out, what I might do in the future, and a brief summary: http://acornbeeretc.blogspot.com/2016/01/acorn-beer-results-discussion.html

I should have included a summary in the original version of this reply: It tastes like brown ale. Several people have tried it, and no one noticed anything obviously unusual. Maybe a drier finish than expected. It also has great head retention, and quite a chill haze, so the acorns may have contributed protein.
« Last Edit: January 13, 2016, 07:56:18 PM by cspence »

Offline reverseapachemaster

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Re: Acorn beer
« Reply #13 on: January 13, 2016, 07:54:08 AM »
I don't think acorn has much use even if you can get past the tannin issue because the nuts lack any meaningful flavor. Roasting might be a good idea. I'd try tasting the roasted nuts directly. If there isn't a significant flavor you like then there's probably not much you can do to make it worth the trouble of adding acorns to a brew except to say you added acorns.
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Offline cspence

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Re: Acorn beer
« Reply #14 on: January 13, 2016, 04:50:06 PM »
I did taste the acorns. They had a pleasant flavor, a little sweetness, some buttery character, but otherwise they're not like anything else I'm familiar with. The flavor isn't strong, but not weak, either.