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'Mystery Spice' for my Dark Winter Patersbier?

Discussion in 'Homebrewing' started by BedetheVenerable, Oct 16, 2012.

  1. Want to do a dark monkish 'session-ish' beer for winter. Here's what my recipe looks like so far...

    5 gallons, estimated OG 1.048 estimated FG 1.008

    -3 lbs Munich
    -3 lbs Belgian pils
    -8 oz. Caramunich
    -8 oz. Special B
    -8 oz. D180 syrup

    -1 oz Northern Brewer (8.5AA) at 60 min

    -1 smack-pack of Wyeast French Saison in 1 L starter

    -Mash at around 151-152

    What do you guys think of this recipe? I've never used the French Saison yeast, but it says it works well with spices. I'd like to add just a hint of spiciness other than the yeast, but I don't want it to stick out. What do you guys think? Coriander? Star Anise? I haven't had a lot of experience with spices in Belgian-style ales before.
  2. VikeMan

    VikeMan Advocate (740) Pennsylvania Jul 12, 2009

    Personally I'd brew it at least once without adding any spices. (You may find that you wouldn't want to add any after seeing what this yeast does anyway.) Then, if you do add spices to a later batch, you'll be able to tell what they are contributing.
  3. jbakajust1

    jbakajust1 Moderator (475) Oregon Aug 25, 2009 Staff Member

    Along the lines of what VikeMan said, you could always brew it straight up, then see what spices you might like to add afterwards. You can always do a spice tincture or spice tea and add at bottling, or even add it to the bottling bucket after bottling half of it straight so you have a case of straight and a case of spiced.
  4. You can brew and ferment it, taste a sample, and then decide to add some crushed spices as a "dry spice." I did this once with a Saison brewed with WY3725 that I was also dry hopping. Just added 25 crushed White Peppercorns to the dry hop bag. The pepper taste was noticeable for a few months but faded after that and it worked out very nicely I think. For your beer maybe try the same thing with Coriander.

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