I'm looking to brew a Scottish heather ale of some sort or other. No particular recipe decided on yet, but I know I want to have heather in it.
Problem is: like most brewing herbs, heather is a protected plant in Belgium. That is: Erica tetralix is. Not sure about other subspecies of Erica.
A species which is less prone to moorsland SWAT team interventions is Calluna, which is (I think) also the species being sold in many garden stores as "Heather", if not outright as "Erica". Which it isn't, I know, but many peope don't.
Questions then: I know Calluna is/was often used in brewing, known by its less posh and unscientific name "Ling". Does Ling differ much, flavour-wise, from Erica? Are there any other "heathers" out there which are useful for brewing?
Any first-hand experiences in brewing heather beers? What about the fabled "white powder", supposedly causing wild hallucinations and a possible explanation for the Vikings' legendary berserk rage?