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View Full Version : Going Internet Amish, Entry One: Birch Beer



Syntactical Disruptorize
30th July 09, 06:54 PM
I think I'll start a new trend: Going Internet Amish. The goal is to simplify one's life by buying things off of the Internet alone. Bonus points for buying actual Amish goods this way.
My first adventure into this realm was with the Connecticut Cane and Reed Company (http://www.caneandreed.com/), fine Internet purveyors of Olde Worlde stuffs!

Specifically, I wanted birch beer extract (http://www.caneandreed.com/eshop/10Expand.asp?ProductCode=asbbe). See, I got addicted to Boylan's (http://boylanbottling.com/) line of birch beers, but the local stores stopped carrying them. (Bastards!)

Choosing between withdrawal symptoms and research, I chose research. Hence, Cane and Reed.

Alas! The birch beer extract came with instructions to make alcoholic birch beer. "But Cy, you're an alcoholic! Doesn't that make it a perfect fit?" This does not work as you'd hope it would.

But I'm a clever soul, and figured that the fermentation process might add a bit of flavor, but mostly carbonation. Surely a birch beer syrup could be concocted that could be used in a manner similar to an Italian soda syrup.

My first recipe:


2 cups sugar
2 cups water
2 tablespoons birch beer extract
1 teaspoon vanilla extractCombine sugar and water in a pot. Heat and stir until boiling. Remove from heat and wait to cool. Add birch beer extract and vanilla. Store in a sealed bottle or carafe.

This was very mellow, although too sweet. I am going to see about making a sugar-free version of this syrup soon.

Has anyone else here tried birch beer or soda of any kind? Any thoughts or recipes to share?

Spade: The Real Snake
30th July 09, 07:09 PM
Has anyone else here tried birch beer or soda of any kind? Any thoughts or recipes to share?

I've never tried making any, but do like birch beer. Thus far, I have only tried the Jones, IBC and Stewart's brands.

Syntactical Disruptorize
30th July 09, 07:11 PM
I've never tried making any, but do like birch beer. Thus far, I have only tried the Jones, IBC and Stewart's brands.Those are all likely to be good. Boylan's makes a "creamy red" variant for kids with lots of vanilla and sugar. I find it cloying. Their diet birch beer is very good though.

Aphid Jones
30th July 09, 07:33 PM
I've made this before. Watch how much of that extract you put in.

Syntactical Disruptorize
30th July 09, 07:39 PM
I've made this before. Watch how much of that extract you put in.Why? Allergy issues? I know the extract is powerful.

Aphid Jones
30th July 09, 08:02 PM
Why? Allergy issues? I know the extract is powerful.

No allergies, but a little too much gave it a more artificial-flavor type bite that could have been avoided by using less.

Syntactical Disruptorize
30th July 09, 08:04 PM
No allergies, but a little too much gave it a more artificial-flavor type bite that could have been avoided by using less.Yes, an overly intense birch flavor would reek of saccharine.

Spade: The Real Snake
30th July 09, 10:53 PM
Those are all likely to be good. Boylan's makes a "creamy red" variant for kids with lots of vanilla and sugar. I find it cloying. Their diet birch beer is very good though.

Damn, I just got home and am hungry as hell and now I am craving Birch Beer.

Robot Jesus
31st July 09, 11:58 AM
try fermenting it for a very short period of time, like say three days. there will be some alcohol in it, but not an appreciable amount, and it should be carbonated.

maybe try bakers yeast; I've heard it can make things nasty and "bready", but it's designed for maximum co2. maybe half a day is all you would need?