Braggots!

Wed Jan 03, 2007 9:12 pm

Is this where I can talk about Braggots? I love them. I started brewing with honey in pale ales and one day through together left over ingredents and aparantly made a Braggot. It was an eye opening experience. I then looked up Braggots in the BJCP and it seemed very vague. I would love any personal experience or info anyone has. Thanks
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Cleay
 
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Wed Jan 03, 2007 9:15 pm

Lufah definitely has experience with 'em. Luf'?
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Wed Jan 03, 2007 10:31 pm

Whoever sent me Secret Santa has experience. They were from NH. Don't know if they are any good because I haven't had it yet.

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wezil
 
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Thu Jan 04, 2007 4:46 am

Cleay,

Anything specific you want to know about braggots? Or just looking for general information?

Many people think that a braggot has to be formulaic vis a vis a certain percentage of fermentable sugar must be derived from honey. I haven't seen any BJCP, Mazer Cup or Mead Festival guidelines that hold to a strict percentage of any kind.

This is because the influence and character of honey varies widely from source to source so it is entirely possible to make a braggot from two different kinds of honey and have the malt and honey characters evenly balanced while using very disparate portions of honey in each batch. A pair of example honeys would be Buckwheat and Alfalfa honey. One dark, brooding, rich, earthy, caramel and the other light, smooth, delicate almost grassy. They will both come into balance with the malt, but they will take very different quantities to do so. Another great thing about braggots is that you have the option of hopping or not hopping, some of the best braggots I've had are actually a combination of oaked and very subtly hopped examples that were spectacular.

Hence, no percentage can really work. I have seen individual clubs that have specific rules governing the percentages of honey and malt in braggots (Maltose Falcons spring to mind) but that is still a general guideline rather than an exact line of demarcation for either ingredient.

We treat our braggot entries at the International Mead Festival Home Mead Maker Competition like gold because there are usually not the large number of entries we see in other categories (other fruit melomel (25C) and open category mead (26C)) being the most contested categories. So for those of you that like to make braggot, brew em up and condition them for the 2008 IMF Home Mead Competition in Denver, Colorado.

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Oskaar
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Oskaar
 
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Thu Jan 04, 2007 8:41 am

I have made one myself and tasted one from a brew club near me.

You can make them in a few ways, first make a wort, cool it add honey and wine yeast and let it go. Or make a wort, ferment it with beer yeast, then add honey and inoculate it with wine yeast.

They are a different beast, flavor wise, but I have to admit that I enjoy a brandy snifter with a few oz of braggot after dinner.

So like Oskaar said what do you want to know? This style is a neat way to combine mazing and brewing all in one drink!!
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yabodie
 
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Thu Jan 04, 2007 10:15 am

I had made my first in the winter, I think it was January. Then Put it in my basement (60*-65*F) and forgot about it. At the time I also didn't know it was a braggot or had ever heard of braggot. The following July I was cleaning out the beer stores and gave it a try. It was like nothing I had ever had. I enjoyed them all summer. I have now brew them a lot. Also like mead, ageing does nothing but great things.

I guess I just wanted to know what other people are doing with them? What kinds of honey? Malts, Hops etc. Also some places to get different honeys. I used to get some incredible Apple blossom honey from a local source but they seem to have stopped making it.
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Cleay
 
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