Hemp instead of Hops

Discussion in 'General Brewing Discussions' started by Frankenbrewer, Nov 13, 2020.

  1. Frankenbrewer

    Frankenbrewer Well-Known Member

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    One of the online places I buy stuff from is having a sale on hemp. Anyone here ever used hemp in their beer instead of or in addition to hops?
     
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  2. Semper Sitientem

    Semper Sitientem Well-Known Member

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    I’ve never used hemp because I tasted a hemp beer once and almost spit it back up. Kind of like sweet, hoppy bong water. Of course, that’s my pallet. YMMV. I would recommend tasting one before you commit, just to make sure that’s the direction you want to go.
     
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  3. Frankenbrewer

    Frankenbrewer Well-Known Member

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    I'm not buying. i was just interested to hear if any of you out here has tried it. I'm sticking with hops for now!!!
     
  4. 56 Firedome

    56 Firedome Active Member

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    Well, there's hemp & there's hemp.
    Last Spring Zymurgy published an article about Marijuana Infusion in Homebrew. I couldn't & didn't wait to try it out. As Colorado has legal Marijuana I dived right in. The process in the article was tedious so after the 1st batch I innovated a far easier technique.
    I brewed the Cream of 3 Crops cream ale & added the results of my revised method. It was a great beer & the Infusion was quite effective. The beer was christened "If You Might Have To Pee In A Cup, Don't Drink This Beer".
    The article obviously spurred several letters to the editors, both for & against. Mine was a for. Innovation is the hallmark of Home Brewing & this just another ingredient with its own contributions to the world of brewing. Not so different from Coffee & Chocolate. Combining 2 of our favorite things with another.
    I don't expect the macro brews to climb on the bandwagon & that's OK with me.
     
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  5. HighVoltageMan!

    HighVoltageMan! Well-Known Member

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    I don't mean to snarky, but I really wonder why hemp would be used in beer. Is it for flavor (which seems doubtful)? Or for extra "high"? I guess I don't see the point.

    A few years ago a beer was introduced with caffeine. I had the same question. What's the point? The beer was a flop and no one bought it.
     
  6. 56 Firedome

    56 Firedome Active Member

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    #6 56 Firedome, Nov 20, 2020
    Last edited: Nov 20, 2020
    Well, like I said, There's hemp & there's hemp. The hemp discussed above is Industrial Hemp. Used for many cloth applications & cordage. Marijuana is a member of the Hemp family along with Hops.
    I suppose the Industrial Hemp was offered as Trial Ballon in an effort to explore a potential new market. Probably not.
    Just like lots of other adjuncts, like Coffee, Chocolate or Peaches. The difference, at least as far as the Tincture goes, is it doesn't add a taste or aroma. It does add a different layer to the beer. If you chase a favorite beer with a shot of single malt scotch, you're doing the same thing.
    One of the hallmarks of Homebrewing is innovation in processes & ingredients. This is just another in a long line of experimental additions.
    The tincture process uses Food Grade Glycerine to absorb the THC & transfer it with out adding unwanted taste or color. An extraction using alcohol creates an oil which doesn’t want to mix with beer which is mostly water. Oil & water don't mix, voluntarily. Glycerine blends with water/beer easily & doesn’t separate or settle.
    There's a buzz from the 5% ABV & a follow up fromTHC, neither is overwhelming but noticeable. I considered it a success & will do it again. The name of the beer & a label are intended to warn consumers in case of driving or operating heavy machinery, which should be observed either way.
    I have a doc on the process.
     
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  7. Hawkbox

    Hawkbox Well-Known Member

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    That's interesting, I did the math on marijauna beer a couple years ago when it legalized in Canada and it added a ton of additional cost to a keg so we decided it wasn't worth the effort.
     
  8. 56 Firedome

    56 Firedome Active Member

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    I suppose it depends on where you buy your Marijuana. Here in Colorado there are 2 legal sources for purchasing Pot. Recreational & Medical. Pricing is in 1/8th oz (3.5 grams) increments.
    In a Recreational Dispensary an 1/8th Oz of 22 to 30 % AA is $44 including State Sales Tax & the Marijuana Tax. While pricing for the same Pot from a Medical Despensory is $25 an 1/8Oz. I am a Medical License holder.
    I used 1/8th Oz to make 1/2 pint of Tincture which I added to 5 gallons of Cream Ale. According to the article in Zymurgy, that amounts to 58 10 mg doses of 26% AA. Medical dosage in Colorado is 20 mg while Recreational dosage is 10 mg. There doesn't seem to be an easy, or affordable, way to determine the THC content of the beer.
    So, my price examples are USD, I'm not sure how that compares to Canadian prices.
    As you didn't mention the prices in Canada I'm not able to compare to them to Colorado. The Cream Ale was $38 for the 5 gallon batch, the Tincture did increase the price of the beer by about 50%. How much did the glass of single malt cost?
     
  9. Trialben

    Trialben Well-Known Member

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    Bong water aghhhhh:D!
     
  10. Trialben

    Trialben Well-Known Member

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    Smoked It instead....:D:D
     
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  11. Hawkbox

    Hawkbox Well-Known Member

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    That sounds about right Firedome for costing, our dollar is about 70c on yours but a 3.5g pack is around 50-60CAD if not on sale. Considering a keg of beer is about $20 in materials that basically increased the cost of materials by 4x and we just weren't interested.

    With it being more and more legal now and better brewers experimenting with it I'm interested to see where it goes since it was all eyeball math when we were doing it.

    And yes Ben, that is the chosen path for it. ;)

    If we were to grow our own it probably would make it more feasible to put in beer but I don't care enough to bother. A 3.5g pack lasts me a really long time.
     
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  12. thunderwagn

    thunderwagn Well-Known Member

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    I could be wrong but I would assume that at least some would be into the dankness of it. I like dank hoppy beers and I think hemp adds some of that and more. I know New Belgium has a hemp beer and it is super dank. Like opening a huge bag of skunk weed dank. There's no thc and that's why I was willing to try it. Not bad, but way to much for me. As someone else posted above, I also felt it added a bunch of sweetness.
    I had another hemp beer a couple of months ago by another local brewery and got almost no dank at all but really sweet.
    I think I prefer my dank to come from hops, but to each their own. That's why we do what we do. So we can make and enjoy what we want.
     
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  13. Daniel Parshley

    Daniel Parshley Active Member

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    The Food Grade Glycerine for transferring oil based flavors to beer might be helpful to know in the future. Does it have to be in alcohol first and then mix in the glycerine? I would guess you keep the boil time to a minimum to keep from volatilizing the oils, or add at shutoff.
     
  14. Nosybear

    Nosybear Well-Known Member

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    Don't worry about the glycerin. It's unnecessary at our scale
     
  15. 56 Firedome

    56 Firedome Active Member

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    This approach uses the glycerine to absorb the THC from the Pot. You add it to the Keg. You don't boil it at all. Without the glycerine you don't have anything.
    So, it goes like this:
    Toast the Marijuana on a cookie sheet at 300 F for 5 to 7 minutes. (Decarbolization) You grind the toasted Pot to a fine powder, you place the Pot & glycerine in a vacuum seal packet. You heat the packet to 220 F in a crock pot & hold for an hour. Then the glycerine/pot mixture is strained through a fine mesh hop bag into a pint jar. The glycerine/ tincture mixture can be added to a pint glass, 2 to 4 drops or dump the entire 1/2 pint into the keg.
    I made a cream ale & added the jar to the keg. I chose Cream of 3 Crops for a clear 5% medium hopped beer that would tell on me if there was any unexpected flavor or aroma. Neither were evident in the glass.
    Glycerine is a sweetener in soda pop & lots of other products. No taste, aroma, or color chages were detected.
    Don't boil it in the Kettle or add it to the Fermenter. Add it to the Secondary or the Keg for best results.
    Since the product adds no taste, color or aroma change it is responsible behavior to warn a consumer about its presence. The beers name & label say ir all, "If You Might Have to Pee In A Cup, Don't Drink This Beer." Similar observations regarding driving & operating heavy machinery. In truth 1/2 pint in 5 gallons is not likely to cause a problem but fair warning is only fair.
    Wow Nosy, new avatar? Cylon trooper. Humans beware.
     
  16. 56 Firedome

    56 Firedome Active Member

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    I think I mentioned above that a doc (PDF) available, no cost. PM me if you are interested.
     

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