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Gruit Style Guide

Prior to the Reinheitsgebot, many different herbs were used in place of hops for their preservative, bittering, and often intoxicating properties. Stephen Buhner argues in his book Sacred Herbal and Healing Beers that this law was the first controlled substances act enacted in history, and was largely aimed at outlawing the consciousness expanding beers and mandating the use of hops, which have more sedative effects.

Beers brewed with herbs and no (or minimal) hops are classified as Gruit (pronounced “groot”), which was the prevailing style of beer in Europe for about 1000 years. Although quite rare these days outside of homebrewing circles, Gruit has become to pop up from time to time as the beer world again seeks to find the edge of what is possible with beer.

Click here for Gruits recently reviewed by Professor Sudz

Some Gruits to try:
New Belgium Gruit
Olvalde Rise of the Burghers
Beer Reviews by Prof Sudz

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