Butterscotch Beer

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Butterscotch Beer

Postby nothreat » Sun Jun 08, 2008 6:04 am

Hello. I just found this place and it is great. I have been brewing from partial grain kits for about 15 years. I am looking for a recipe for a butterscotch beer. I found a beer about 10 years ago call "Zebra beer" which had very strong butterscotch flavor and it was fantastic. I have never found it again. I tried creating my own recipe several years ago using butterscotch extract, but it was an awful, bitter brew. I couldn't drink it. Has anyone ever heard of Zebra beer? Anyone have a recommendation for a recipe? I generally like very hoppy beers, but I expect this would need to relatively mildly hopped. I just bought my first kegging system (2 kegs) and I would like this to be my first batch on the new system. Any help would be appreciated.
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Re: Butterscotch Beer

Postby majorvices » Sun Jun 08, 2008 6:59 am

Usually Butterscotch is most often associated with Diacetyl which is a common yeast characteristic, acceptable in small amounts in many English ales but considered a flaw in heavy amounts in any beer.

Was the beer intended to have a butterscotch character? Did the beer descrption mention butterscotch as a flavoring? Or was this just something you noticed?
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Re: Butterscotch Beer

Postby nothreat » Sun Jun 08, 2008 3:43 pm

It has been years, but I think it did advertise the butterscotch flavor. I am not sure why the flavor appealed to me so much. I tend to like very hoppy IPAs. My guess is that it didn't appeal to too many people, since I can't find it or anyone who has heard of it. I have a Tshirt though, so I know it existed. Is there a particular yeast that produces the diacetyl flavor more pronounced than others? I suspect if I just made a mild ale and used that strain of yeast, it would approximate the flavor. Would it be enhanced by fermenting at a higher temp (the high 70s)?
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Re: Butterscotch Beer

Postby Brandon » Sun Jun 08, 2008 4:04 pm

Was it either one of these???:
http://www.ratebeer.com/beer/harrisons- ... ale/54972/

http://www.ratebeer.com/beer/arctic-cra ... out/73857/


If you just HAVE to do it, then I would avoid at all costs fermenting at a higher temp. There are numerous other problems besides diacetyl that come with that. You should probably consider Butterscotch extracts and just brew a good example of whatever style you want. A quick google search brings up this http://www.escofoods.com/butterscotch.flavor.html
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Re: Butterscotch Beer

Postby nothreat » Sun Jun 08, 2008 5:48 pm

It wasn't any of the reviewed beers, but my memory tells me that I would have described it in many of the same ways. I think I will give the extract another shot. Would you add the extract during the boil stage, or during the secondary fermentation? I imagine the extract wouldn't have many fermentable sugars, but it might boil off some. Maybe the last ten minutes of the boil? I always 75% boil for at least an hour. I added it to the secondary last time. I think I added 4-5 ounces to a five gallon batch. Does that seem like the right ball park for the quantity? I figured the extract was very strong. It actually burned my tongue when I tested it. Well, not burned, but it was an acrid, unpleasant sensation. As you can tell, I haven't developed any recipes, but I am ready to start. Thanks for your help.
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Re: Butterscotch Beer

Postby Brandon » Sun Jun 08, 2008 6:10 pm

Secondary, no reason to boil it. Go with a good high quality extract add it into the secondary an oz at a time to suit your tastes. Or you could trow in a piece of butterscotch into your pint glass everytime you pour a beer.
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Re: Butterscotch Beer

Postby alewife » Sun Jun 08, 2008 6:26 pm

This reminds me of a similar post several years back. Butterscotch syrup (or ice cream topping) was mentioned. Both of those can have cream, butter and or milk solids in them as well as any number of other ingredients, putting fat content into the beer didn't seem to make sense, or milk solids (which would have protein as well as lactose). So, it didn't make much sense to pour that into the beer like you would a Lyle's Golden syrup that is common procedure in Britain. Makes you think of the brewers who use Jolly Ranchers for their Watermelon ales though! :shock: How about some Werther's Originals? :shock: Or just brew a very malty, caramel bitter or something on the lines of a milk stout (with some lactose added) and use the Ringwood yeast???? It's certainly known to produce diacetyl. Hard to tell, having never tasted what you are describing. It would be unique in any event. :wink:

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P.S. Got sidetracked mid post and noticed the new posts! I've added chocolate extract to a Young's Double Chocolate Stout clone -- You can do that right at bottling if you want and taste and add until you like what you taste. It will soften a bit with conditioning and bottle age. I don't really secondary, but I do rack a day or two before I bottle. I added the chocolate extract then, and tasted. It softened a bit even in the next few days before I bottled. Then, more afterwards. There will be differences in flavor between brands of flavoring as well. That's another place you would need to experiment or go by the trial and error method. And, you know, those extracts probably have diacetyl added right to them! (Read your bottle label) Just like inexpensive microwave popcorn... so beware...
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Re: Butterscotch Beer

Postby majorvices » Mon Jun 09, 2008 5:30 am

nothreat wrote:It has been years, but I think it did advertise the butterscotch flavor. I am not sure why the flavor appealed to me so much. I tend to like very hoppy IPAs. My guess is that it didn't appeal to too many people, since I can't find it or anyone who has heard of it. I have a Tshirt though, so I know it existed. Is there a particular yeast that produces the diacetyl flavor more pronounced than others? I suspect if I just made a mild ale and used that strain of yeast, it would approximate the flavor. Would it be enhanced by fermenting at a higher temp (the high 70s)?


WLP004 Irish ale yeast tends to produce a lot more diacetyl than other yeasts. 002 and 007 produce some as well. It depends on how you handle the strain. Diacetyl doesn't usually come from high fermentation temps but from yeast that is struggling in a colder environment. Higher fermentation temps will likely give you a hodge podge of off flavors that you won;t be able to detect any diacetyl. Try pitching one of the strains mentioned above at around 58-60 degrees and hold the temp around 64 and see if that works. Then find some high quality butterscotch extract, pull a pint and start by adding one drop. Taste. Keeping ading one drop until you have the flavor right and then figure out how many drops you will need for the remainder of the keg.
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