Results 1 to 10 of 10

Thread: Root Beer

  1. #1
    Join Date
    Oct 2002
    Location
    Whitby, Ontario, Canada
    Posts
    4

    Wink Root Beer

    I'd like to attempt to make a root beer but I've tried a couple of kits with terrible result. Might anyone have a recipe that you wouldn't mind sharing. I want to make a batch for my son's birthday in August. Cheers!

  2. #2
    Join Date
    Jun 2003
    Location
    Austin, Texas
    Posts
    351
    I've made excellent root beer with root beer extract, sugar and water, mixed hot in a 5-gallon soda keg, then chilled and carbonated by putting a fair amount of CO2 pressure on the keg and shaking the bejesus out of it.

    Many homebrew shops sell root beer extract (and usually more than one kind, like root beer, sasparilla and birch beer). The recipes provided (basically the proportions of extract to sugar to water) are dead simple, too.

    Good luck!

    Tim

  3. #3
    Join Date
    Oct 2002
    Location
    Eugene OR
    Posts
    11

    Gnome Root Beer Extract

    ***disclaimer*** I'm a friend of the owner.

    Recently I went looking for a really good Root Beer extract for my pub. I tried Northwestern Extract, "Old Fashioned", Sprecher, and Gnome. I was pleasantly surprised to find out that locally made Gnome is the best, IMO.

    I found it to be more flavorful (not 1-dimensional), and worked well with my all-grain (no sugar) base.

    If you can't find it locally, try Northern Brewer. http://www.northernbrewer.com/soda.html
    ***disclaimer*** Never used them (although they do have a good reputation), they just came up on a Google search.

  4. #4
    Join Date
    Oct 2002
    Location
    Athens, NY
    Posts
    431
    I use the Northwestern Extract and am very happy with it. I boil up my sugar and water and add the extract to the cooled liquid. Try about a pound of sugar per gallon of water (sounds like a lot, but everybody loves it!) and carbonate the heck out of it. The more CO2 the better.
    Hutch Kugeman
    Head Beer Guy
    Crossroads Brewing
    Athens, NY

  5. #5
    Join Date
    Aug 2003
    Location
    JunctionCity WI 54443
    Posts
    8
    If you want a full bodied and more robust rootbeer dont forget to use honey in place of part of the sugar. For a five gallon batch I would use 4.5#'s of pure cane sugar and 1# of any clean honey, (clover being the most common). A tblsp or two of pure vanilla extract helps take the bitter edge off of some extracts. P.S. Northwest has some great extracts. I can not remember the number, but the extract I prefer is not the old fashioned but rather the botanical. It is much more robust.
    good luck.
    CWBC

  6. #6
    Join Date
    Feb 2003
    Location
    Las Vegas
    Posts
    387

    Recipe

    Try adding some molasses to the extract for a nice body and flavor dimension start small, maybe 1 Tbs per 2 gallons. Like someone else said vanilla is a great addition to smooth out the extracts. If you want to try a more from scratch recipe split the extract with sasparilla and sassafrass*(note: sassafrass has a FDA warning as a cancer causing agent but a bit of research will show this to be harmless in the amounts needed). Sassafrass is the main ingredient in authentic rootbeer as you will instantly recognize the smell from the root. Some good health food stores have it, but due to the FDA thing it can be hard to locate. I have had luck adding small amounts of anise, fennel, ginger etc. It is real fun to play around with the recipes. To please the average consumer and kids stick with a recipe that is at least 50% extract. If you are using yeast to carbonate use small amounts, I use about 1 tsp of coopers dried ale yeast per 2 gallon batch. If the temp in your storage area is warm check a bottle after a couple days and keep checking every day or so to avoid gushers, as soon as you get a good carb refrigerate everything! Good Luck!
    Big Willey
    "You are what you is." FZ

  7. #7
    Join Date
    Oct 2002
    Location
    Whitby, Ontario, Canada
    Posts
    4
    This is great, thank you! I have a related question. I've heard that if I run root beer though a beer line that I will not be able to use that line again for beer. Is this true? Do I need to separate everything for the root beer from the rest of my brewery?
    Cheers!

  8. #8
    Join Date
    Feb 2003
    Location
    Las Vegas
    Posts
    387

    Root Lines

    I have never heard anyone reccomend running beer through a line that has been used for root beer. I figure if you can smell it through an unopened extract container it will permeate the beer lines maybe even migrate into adjacent lines ruining other lines. If you have good barrier tubing maybe not. I know a guy locally that is getting ready to try and reclaim one of his lines that has been used for rootbeer for an extended period. He does have barrier tubing so I will give him a call and see how it goes. Root beer is potent stuff though. If possible run it in designated kegs with a dedicated line that wont come in contact with other lines. Why take the chance?
    Big Willey
    "You are what you is." FZ

  9. #9
    Join Date
    Oct 2002
    Location
    Eugene OR
    Posts
    11

    Reclaiming equipment used for Root Beer

    While I have never heard of *anyone* reclaiming Root Beer lines, I have had good success reclaiming kegs and other SS fittings used for Root Beer.

    What I've done is fill the kegs with hot caustic solution and let them sit for at least a week. I then reheat the caustic and CIP the kegs.

    I follow it up with a "passivation strength" nitric acid wash and rinse.

    For parts, a soaking works well, just give it more time than if you were CIP'ing.

    My thinking was that since the alcohol used to make extracts is a mild 'organic' acid, a stronger acid would be able to remove any remnants. It works. No root beer flavor or smell is left behind.

  10. #10
    Join Date
    Oct 2002
    Location
    Eugene OR
    Posts
    11

    Re: Root Beer (post mix)

    Originally posted by Tash
    For almost eight years I made root beer as 'post mix' and ran into through our Pepsi system. We just made it a condition of carrying Pepsi and they obliged. We ran it in cornies and figured out the appropriate 'brix' to serve it at. It would have been murder to produce as much root beer as we were selling at 'serving strength'...
    Post Mix??? Do tell! Do tell!!! This would solve a lot of problems.

Posting Permissions

  • You may not post new threads
  • You may not post replies
  • You may not post attachments
  • You may not edit your posts
  •