Batch #2-09: Ginger Beer, tweaked…

Style Ginger Beer
  1. 2 Lemons
  2. 1 Lime
  3. 8oz Ginger Root (about enough to match your fist in size)
  4. 1/4 cup Granulated Sugar
  5. 1/2 cup Brown Sugar
  6. pinch of Allspice
  7. 1/4 tsp Cream of Tartar
  8. 1/4 tsp ground cinnamon (can subsitute with a pinch of cinnamon bark)
  9. 1 whole clove
Brewing Date: Saturday, February 21, 09
Yeast Pitch: Saturday, February 21, 09 8:30PM
Bottling Date: Sunday, February 22, 09
Release Date: Wednesday, February 25, 09


This is a small batch (1.2 gal) of non-alcoholic ginger beer I brewed in a small 3qt covered pot, then diluted to 1.5 gal.  The steps were simple: boil 3qt’s of water, throw in the ginger root (skinned, then pureed) and sugar, stir, wait 15 minutes, then add the lemons and lime (peeled skin off but leaving the rhine, and sliced into quarters), the spices and the brown sugar.  Boil for another 20 minutes.  Finally, I strained the mixture into a larger 8 qt pot using a paper towel.  I also squeezed the juices out of the lemons/lime in the paper towel back into the mixture.  I then added 3qt of cool water to this pot (6qt total).

I then put that 8qt pot in an ice bath in the sink for 15 minutes.  When done, it was only warm to the touch. I added a small amount of wet ale yeast I keep in a culture container, stirring it into the mix, then bottled the mixture using a siphon and spring-loaded bottle filler (from my home brew kit).

After 12 hours, there was carbonation building, so I put the bottles in the fridge.   After 12 hours, I tasted the results.  The bottle had a decent amount of carbination.  The brew itself had a decent taste, but the odor of the yeast was overpowering–to say the least.  It ruined the experience.  After letting the glass sit for 5 minutes, it tasted only marginally better.

So this batch went down the drain–literally.  I think the next batch I make I will try to carbonate the drink with a soda carbinaton injector, instead of yeast.  The taste of the ginger mixture was good, but the yeast just made it unbearable.