Science Fair Project Encyclopedia
Spruce beer is a fermented liquor, made from the leaves and small branches of the spruce (Picea), or from the essence of spruce, boiled with sugar or molasses and fermented with yeast. There are two kinds, brown (molasses) and white (refined sugar). Some consider the latter to be better, but other aficionados prefer the complexity that molasses gives to the former. Spruce beer forms an agreeable and wholesome beverage and is also used as a herbal medicine. In Canada, it is also a herbal taste soft drink.
'Spruce beer' may also refer to beer - composed of the traditional ingredients of malted barley, hops, yeast, and water - that has been flavored, or spiced, with spruce. This flavoring can be added with spruce essence or by including spruce twigs or needles with the wort during the boiling stage of brewing.
Spruce beer was popular in the colonial United States.
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