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Honey Instead Of Sugar

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lukey1

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Hello.. would like to do a kit brew with honey, but i was wondering exactly how much honey would i need to substitute 1Kg of sugar/dexstros, is it 1kg of honey or more/less? would appreciate any opinions here, cheers :beer:
 

iralosavic

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I don't have any facts with me, but I believe honey is Only around 82% sugars, and probably lower conversion efficiency, so you'd need more, but I'd be guessing as to by how much.
 

Nick JD

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Honey is essentially fructose, so it's a really expensive dextrose, as the yeast treat it as dextrose and pretty much turn it instantly into alcohol.

And the flavours that make honey taste like it does are largely stripped out during fermentation.
 

lukey1

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o.k. i think a little trail and error might be the go...im not worried about the costs.. i just want something that will taste good. im gonna go a drought with and once of cluster hops and some local honey i reckon...ill wack a kilo in there and test the alcohol content..see how i go...thanks for the reply fellas. :)
 

MHB

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Honey is essentially fructose, so it's a really expensive dextrose, as the yeast treat it as dextrose and pretty much turn it instantly into alcohol.

And the flavours that make honey taste like it does are largely stripped out during fermentation.
I mostly ignore Nicks ramblings but in this case there is just so much wrongness crammed into so little space that I will make an exception.
Honey is essentially fructose Wrong - honey is about 33-45% Fructose the balance being mostly glucose 24-40% and water 15-20%.
so it's a really expensive dextrose Wrong - Dextrose is about 97% Dexter Rotated Glucose Monohydrate (you can see why we call it Dextrose for short) balance Water
as the yeast treat it as dextrose and pretty much turn it instantly into alcohol. Well as near as Nick gets to being right, yeast metabolises both fructose and glucose the same way, but before it can metabolise Fructose it has to do a bit of chemical rearrangement essentially making it into glucose, so yeast will use Maltose (2 X Glucose) (yes there is a couple of percent in honey) first, then Glucose then Sucrose (Invertase makes sugar into 1 Glucose and 1 Fructose) then Fructose.
As we approach the attenuation limit for the ferment the remaining sugars become proportionally richer in Fructose as the yeast preferentially selects others sugars first, as fructose is about 28% sweeter than Sucrose this will have an impact on the finished beer similar to what people get when they use sugar (Sucrose). Not necessarily a bad thing just different.
Leaving the instantly alone as I suspect its just hyperbole... we all know nothing happens instantly.

And the flavours that make honey taste like it does are largely stripped out during fermentation.
Not in fact the case, the sweetness is mostly removed during fermentation but speaking as an old mead maker most of the other flavours are intensified (well the perception of them is) by the removal of the sweetness.
Thats why you need to be careful when selecting honey for brewing. A strong flavoured (i.e. Leatherwood) can taste pretty good on a crumpet, brew with it and it will dominate the flavour of most beers, try to choose light clear sweet honey, my two favourites are Clover and Yellow Box, White Box and some of the orchid honeys are also excellent.

Honey is generally regarded as having a 75% yield, without doing a lot of maths, think of it as being 75% of what you get from a Kg of Sugar, or not a lot different to what you would get from a Kg of Liquid Malt Extract (~80% yield).

Honey Wheat beers are a great place to start experimenting with honey, avoid over hopping, just let the honey show what it can do, you might get some odd flavours when the beer is young let it mature and you should have some great summer drinking.
Mark

From the following
Honey_Comp.JPG
If you want to know way too much about honey this is a good read View attachment CompositionHoney.20105942.pdf
M
 

Nick JD

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I think his drought will be nice with the honeyz, Mark.
 

thebeemann

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as a beekeeper and mead maker the 1 bit of advise i can give you is ,dont over heat the honey if you want the honey flavours to come thru, i add honey about half way thru ferment in beer that i want certain flavours to come thru in, but as MHB says stay away from strong honey leatherwood and mangrove honey are not good to brew with , i usualy go for 25% more honey to replace sugar , i dont know if its right ,but it works for me :lol:
 

MHB

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I think his drought will be nice with the honeyz, Mark.
Well Nick you worked out how dumb the first reply was and deleted that pretty fast

Words to the effect
Honey is 85% what yeast treats as dextrose

I was going to reply with something along the lines of
So is malt extract should we leave that out of beer to.
Its the bits that arent fermented that make beer, including honey beer what it is and I have tasted some spectacular honey beers.
You dont like honey fine say so, I dont like Rye others do and if they want to use it who am I to say no?
Doesnt mean you or I should get on here and post a bunch of factually incorrect opinionated bullshit just to back up our personal taste preferences.
Mark

But as you were so fast on the delete how about
Thats some seriously dumb shit you got going on there, and Im sure very helpful to the OP who asked a serious question, especially as this in a K&E thread, next time I will be faster to hit the quote button.
M
 

simplefisherman

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My honey brewing experience is pretty limited (even more so than normal brewing ;) ) but I would just say, be careful how much you drink in one go, 'cos they're nice and tasty but I always got a killer hangover of the ' please let my eyeballs out of the vice now ok?' variety. YMMV but something to keep in mind... Best of luck
 

mosto

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I've added 500g of honey to a Canadian Blonde kit (along with some malt extract) and it was the best beer I've brewed to date. I've also added 500g to a wheat beer and, while it wasn't my best beer, I thought the honey saved it to an extent (this was actually the first wheat beer I'd tasted. I've since tried some of the more highly regarded wheat beers and have come to the conclusion that they're not to my taste). My advice would be to keep it to 500g as I thought that provided plenty of honey flavour, but as always, adjust for your own tastes.
 

spaced

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Good write up MHB

Another thing to consider OP is using honey as the priming sugar. I've used it before and it tasted great.

Or using it like fruit and racking onto the honey in secondary. I'd say this will get more of the aroma and flavour in the final product.

Or you could get a honey flavour in the beer by using "Honey Malt"

http://www.brew-dudes.com/honey-malt/175
 

taztiger

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o.k. i think a little trail and error might be the go...im not worried about the costs.. i just want something that will taste good. im gonna go a drought with and once of cluster hops and some local honey i reckon...ill wack a kilo in there and test the alcohol content..see how i go...thanks for the reply fellas. :)
Check out this link for "Wassa's Honey Porter". It's a winner with my mates and is easy to make.

http://www.homebrewandbeer.com/forum/viewt...sa+honey+porter

cheers
Taz
 

thebeemann

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My honey brewing experience is pretty limited (even more so than normal brewing ;) ) but I would just say, be careful how much you drink in one go, 'cos they're nice and tasty but I always got a killer hangover of the ' please let my eyeballs out of the vice now ok?' variety. YMMV but something to keep in mind... Best of luck
I have noticed that as well i wonder if anyone knows why anything brewed with honey gives kick arse hang overs , i had a search on google found some theories but no science behind any of them .
 

spog

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I have noticed that as well i wonder if anyone knows why anything brewed with honey gives kick arse hang overs , i had a search on google found some theories but no science behind any of them .

i think this was talked about in a podcast some time ago,could have been BasicBrewing Radio or Jamil.
sorry for the vague suggestions but i cant recall exactly.........cheers.............spog........
 

lukey1

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That is some damn good advice MHB and the beeman..and the advice on using honey as the primer never even crossed my mind,thank you all.. Will definatley be taking all this onboard, good to get tips off people who know what there on about,thanks again to all those who replied and ill go easy on the hops to0 ...ill let you know if the hangover becomes an issue though it would take a bullet train to the face to stop me brewing and dinking beer...cheers :icon_cheers:
 

JakeSm

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After reading the posts and nearly wetting my pants at MHB posts, i thought i would add my 2 cents aswell.

I have brewed a MJ classic gold lager kit a while ago with equivalent to BE2 also used 200g crystal in the mash and i added 200g of just store bought sqeezey bottle honey that was in the cupboard. This beer tastes absoloutly amazing after 3 months in the bottle.

I used cascade hops i think but not much.

Just thought id throw that in there.

Cheers jake.
 

MartsHomeBrew

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That is some damn good advice MHB and the beeman..and the advice on using honey as the primer never even crossed my mind,thank you all.. Will definatley be taking all this onboard, good to get tips off people who know what there on about,thanks again to all those who replied and ill go easy on the hops to0 ...ill let you know if the hangover becomes an issue though it would take a bullet train to the face to stop me brewing and dinking beer...cheers :icon_cheers:
I have a Mangrove Jacks nut brown ale sitting in the fermenter ready to bottle and was thinking I would like to add honey if possible to enhance the flavour, having not added any to the brew. I am going to try using the figures from this bulk priming document which somebody else posted, which gives some figures in grams of how much sugar to add to different size brews as well as adjustments in quantity depending on type of sugar used. It also discusses using honey as a primer, generally saying to increase recommended grams of sugar used by 50% when using honey. I have a squeeze pack "Pure Beechworth Honey" here which is 82% sugar. http://www.herveybayhomebrew.com/art14.pdf
 

Nick JD

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I have a squeeze pack "Pure Beechworth Honey" here which is 82% sugar.
That's about right. The other part is water with a tiny amount of flavour compounds that are specific to the flowers it came from.

Almost all of that 82% will be made into alcohol by the yeast. Best to treat it as though you added 15% water to some dextrose in your recipe development regarding your final gravity. Have a look at the table Mark posted showing how much of honey is easily metabolisable sugarz.

Using it as a primer is a great way to retain the more volatile flavours that are lost in fermentation.
 

yankinoz

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Honey ales are popular in the US. Obama brews a honey pale and a honey porter in the White House and released the recipes this past week.

I've never been very fond of them but to my unenthusiastic tastes honey works best in wheat beers, where it balances the spiciness, or in very fruity Belgian style ales fermented at high temperatures and to >6% abv. Australia has a greater variety of honeys than anywhere I've ever been, which gives a lot to work with. You might start off with a fragrant but mild sort.

I can't see any reason to add honey early in the boil, since protein content is minimal, but adding after the boil would be risky, since unpasteurized honey generally contains wild yeasts and bacteria. My guess is try adding it near the end.
 
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