Author Topic: Koyt-gruit hybrid  (Read 2066 times)

Offline unclebrazzie

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Koyt-gruit hybrid
« on: April 05, 2016, 12:58:18 PM »
Peepz,

will be trying something with a throw-back to pre-19th century European beers: a Kuyt/Koyt/Coyt/Kuit with a gruit twist.

Although recipes are somewhat disputed, the consenus is "mostly oat malt, wheat malt and maybe a bit of pale". Whether it used to be hopped at all, and whether it had a lot of hop aroma if it was is also somewhat contested, so I'm not overly concerned with historical authenticity.

For 20 liters of 1.050 OG kuyt:
4.5 kg malted oats
1.5 kg malted wheat
.5 kg rice hulls

Mash for 2-3 hours @ 67°C.

Batch sparge to collect 20 liters.

Boil for 70 minutes with

20 IBU of continental hops (Saaz, EKG, Hallerthau, etc) @ T-60' (for preservative purposes)
Add gruit mix to the last 5' of the boil. Mix will contain (doses to be decided):
  • gale
  • a bit of hops
  • mugwort or wormwood
  • bay leaves
  • pepper corns
  • rosemay

Ferment with starter from Fantome dregs.
Rack to secondary. Dry-gruit if necessary.
Bottle. Prime to 3-4 volumes; needs to be just south of  spritzy.

Whatchafink?
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Online dmtaylor

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Re: Koyt-gruit hybrid
« Reply #1 on: April 05, 2016, 01:56:25 PM »
Go for it!  I've brewed several gruit ales with great success, actually call mine a "koyt" as well.  I've done both hopped and unhopped, did well in competitions, etc.  What was most surprising to me with my first gruit is that it turned out so tart.  Some herbs (yarrow in particular I think) actually add tartness with the flavor, more than bitterness.  Either way, it helps balance the ale.  Sweet gale is one that you really must try.  It is a lovely addition with mild character for bitterness and flavor, and unlike most other herbs, the sweet gale can safely be used ounce-for-ounce in the same amounts as hops.

You didn't list any amounts, but I would suggest doing a lot of research on how much you think you should use.... and then take whatever final number you come up with, and only use about 1/3 as much, because everybody always overdoes it, I swear to you.  I don't have my recipe here with me but I recently gave some of my successful amounts on HBT.com, see below.  The amounts I give already were literally already 1/3 the amount I thought I should use, but also tweaked up or down slightly based on real life experience to give a slight herbal flavor that is not so overpowering.  In fact probably could get away with even less than I use, as some of my friends were like "ew!" when they tasted it, but to me I didn't mind the herbs at all.  This is truly a case where less is more, and even less is even more.  So here's that other article (thread was about "mead" but my post is based on experience with gruit ale, not mead):

http://www.homebrewtalk.com/showpost.php?p=7489600&postcount=12

Good luck.  And, be careful with that wormwood.  Based on what I read, I'm afraid to use any at all, as it's super bitter and easily overdone.  The other herbs will give you flavor, less bitterness, and the surprising tartness, like I said.  Hope you enjoy.

EDIT: You might also find this interesting.

http://barclayperkins.blogspot.com/2011/11/horst-at-it-again.html

EDIT2: Oh, and then there's this.

https://www.homebrewersassociation.org/forum/index.php?topic=7816.0
« Last Edit: April 05, 2016, 02:07:03 PM by dmtaylor »
Dave

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Offline unclebrazzie

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Re: Koyt-gruit hybrid
« Reply #2 on: April 06, 2016, 08:05:38 AM »
Thanks for that!

I hear you on the "1/3 of 1/3" rule. I know a pro brewer who made a gruit-saison and who basically gives the same advice: get your herbs, make a tea from a blend of choice, and then add only about a tenth or so of the originally intended amount.

I've made a weird scottish gruit hybrid about a year ago, and while some people like the balls-out gruitiness of it, it's decidedly overpowering. I'll report back with the dosages later on.

Wormwood: I hear ya. Not only has it got that absinth-bitterness, but it's also quite numbing. Which is why I'll likely sub it for mugwort.
Yarrow: it's just starting to come up in pastures and on roadsides. Any special care I should take when using it fresh?
Sweet gale: i'd need to score me some. And yes, this is the one where the "use with extreme moderation" rule applies less. I hear there's a huge difference in effect when boiled as opposed to dry-herbed (which seems preferrable in terms of overall effect if I understand correctly).
Wild rosemary still has me stumped. I take it ordinary kitchen-and-garden rosemary simply will not do.
Heather: Not a herb I'm fond of. I get the idea you need a lot to notice it at all, and I wonder if it'll be any match for the other herbs.
Rusty nail: Now there's a name for the beer :)

Another thing I'm concerned abaout is yeast. Fantome is pretty assertive, but looks like a fun thing to pair with all the herbs. I initially wanted to use bread yeast (like I did in a sahti once), but I'm thinking it'll end up too banana-like.
All truth is fiction.
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Offline reverseapachemaster

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Re: Koyt-gruit hybrid
« Reply #3 on: April 06, 2016, 03:32:36 PM »
Another thing I'm concerned abaout is yeast. Fantome is pretty assertive, but looks like a fun thing to pair with all the herbs. I initially wanted to use bread yeast (like I did in a sahti once), but I'm thinking it'll end up too banana-like.

I think you are on the right path with a mixed culture. Maybe culturing from Saison Vieille Dupont or Orval might give you a drier beer but without the assertiveness of Fantome.
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Offline homoeccentricus

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Re: Koyt-gruit hybrid
« Reply #4 on: April 06, 2016, 04:10:53 PM »
Although Uncle lives a good 5 km from where I live, I'm not going to take any chances and fortify my windows in the coming days, with the Fantome yeast and all.
Frank P.

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Offline unclebrazzie

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Re: Koyt-gruit hybrid
« Reply #5 on: May 23, 2016, 11:15:20 AM »
Follow-up: oated malts are being scored as we speak, and plenty of other gruit-herbs were source here and there, but gale is still bothering me.
Does anyone know of a reliable source where I can purchase Myrica gale buds? Preferrable without extortionate shipping/import fees for continental Europa?
All truth is fiction.
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Offline homoeccentricus

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Re: Koyt-gruit hybrid
« Reply #6 on: May 23, 2016, 03:08:20 PM »
This is the only place I know in Europe: http://www.bogmyrtle.com/
Frank P.

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Offline unclebrazzie

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Re: Koyt-gruit hybrid
« Reply #7 on: May 24, 2016, 09:24:52 AM »
Excellent! Leaves and seeds, thanks HE!

But out of stock until late august/early september :(
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Offline Hand of Dom

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Offline unclebrazzie

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Re: Koyt-gruit hybrid
« Reply #9 on: September 28, 2016, 12:47:37 PM »
Follow-up.

Finally.

I'm likely to be brewing this weird beer/ale/thing next week.
Scored me about 50g of what I hope to be decent gale. Wormwood, mugwort and yarrow I have in dried form.

Going to be experimenting with teas sometime later this week.

Also: poor old me will need to down a bottle of Fantôme all by my lonely self in order to score som dregs. Woe is the lonesome brewer :)

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Offline unclebrazzie

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Re: Koyt-gruit hybrid
« Reply #10 on: October 04, 2016, 07:28:00 AM »
Brewed this yesterday.

Finally settled for

For 20 liters of 1.060 OG kuyt:
4.5 kg malted oats
1 kg malted wheat
1 kg kg pale

β-glucanase rest at 40°C for 20', 3 l/kg.
Pulled about 12 liters of thick mash for a decoction. Brought that to a boil whilst stirring to prevent scorching.
Recombined with liquid mash which brought it nicely up to 65°C, where I kept it for another hour.

Batch sparge to collect 25 liters of ridiculously cloudy wort. Seriously, it looked like a clay suspension. Mash bed settled into a solid brick of grey despair.
All in all, lautering didn't go as badly as I'd feared, but this is one ugly mofo for sure.

As it came to the boil, a really big (I'm talking huge, as in almost an inch) head of hot break started to form. I skimmed most of it off, but more kept forming as the boil began in earnest. I reckon oats contain plenty of protein, plus I never started with clear wort anyway.

Added three handfulls of old Saaz @ T-60' (for preservative purposes)

Added 14g of dried wormwood in a hop sock @ T-30'. Was supposed to leave that in for the remainder of the
boil but after 10', its bitterness had become so prominent, I decided to pull it out.

Added 14g of dried yarrow, 14g of fresh rosemary and 20g of dried heather in another hop sock @T-15'. Rosemary smell was prominent, but wormwood still dominated the taste.

Dumped in fermenter and allowed to cool overnight.
Pitched with active starter of Fantome dregs this morning.

A wort sample I took at the end of the boil showed remarkable trub settling once it cooled. Roughly a third of my measuring cylinder ended up filled with greyish sludge, the top layer turned out to be serviceable hazy dirty-straw colour reminiscent of berliner weisses. Flavour was no longer dominated by wormwood, though it was still very present.

Will add gale in secondary once primary fermentation's done.

Fun brew, but not something I recommend except for the pathologically curious. I'm not sure how historically accurate the Koyt angle is, but I have a hard time imagining anyone would brew such a husk-less mess for a living, even in times of famine, illiteracy and the unexpectedness of the Spanish Inquisition.
Oat malts are lovely in every other way though. Luscious, velvet crackery goodness.

Gruit...I can only repeat the advice already given by Dave and just about everyone else who's ever used gruit herbs in beer: use less. Plan your brew, set a herb dose, then reduce that to no more than 20% of what you set out for. Then use about 1/10 of that. Seriously.

I sampled a wormwood tea a prior to brewing this. 1 gram steeped in 25 cl of hot water. Bitter as your ex. Diluted to 10%, it still attacked the tongue in that numbing wormwood manner. Thinking 14 grams in 25 liter of sweet wort would yield a palatable bitterness was a delusion. Use less. Be prepared to pull the wormwood as soon as you think the brew's had enough.

Yarrow...I'm pretty sure fresh yarrow flowers are infinitely preferrable to dried yarrow (which seems to comprise mostly leaves and stalks). Couldn't pick it up in the wort, but perhaps fermentation will have an impact. I hear yarrow in the dry-hops stage gives positive results.

All truth is fiction.
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Offline homoeccentricus

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Re: Koyt-gruit hybrid
« Reply #11 on: October 04, 2016, 11:42:10 AM »
"Handfulls" is with one L.
Frank P.

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Offline unclebrazzie

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Re: Koyt-gruit hybrid
« Reply #12 on: October 04, 2016, 11:43:00 AM »
"Handfulls" is with one L.

Handsfull then.
All truth is fiction.
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Online dmtaylor

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Re: Koyt-gruit hybrid
« Reply #13 on: October 04, 2016, 12:16:05 PM »
Twerp.  ;)

I seriously hope the wormwood doesn't ruin the experience for you.  Gruit ales can be a very wonderful thing indeed.

I wonder if the oat malt didn't have enough enzymes in all the right places for conversion in an hour.  I've never used oat malt before, much less as a base malt.
« Last Edit: October 04, 2016, 12:18:18 PM by dmtaylor »
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Offline homoeccentricus

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Re: Koyt-gruit hybrid
« Reply #14 on: October 04, 2016, 12:52:30 PM »
Twerp.  ;)

He asked for it. Literally.
Frank P.

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