hist-brewing: herbal hop replacement

S.A.Nichol sue at grove4.freeserve.co.uk
Tue Oct 24 13:21:27 PDT 2000

It seems to me that many are going down a dangerous road using the
likes of pennyroyal and wormwood, these are 2 of many dangerous herbs,
some used in minute quantities can kill. Pennyroyal was frequently
used in the past as a method of inducing an abortion but more often
than not it induced death. 
Could it not be that when researching old brews and finding these
herbs included in them that these brews were not for pleasurable
consumption but used as in a medicine? Many ancient medicines were
brewed in an alcoholic potion as the alcohol preserved the medicinal
qualities of the herb, many medicines today are used in conjunction
with an alcoholic base, even the simplest of medicines (One just has
to look at the drink drive convictions linked with gripe water and
cough medicine.
One also has to look at the fact that some ancient brews were used to
induce a hypnotic trance for magikal purposes.
Why look for an alternative bittering agent to hops? Hops have been
grown in this country for many centuries. Look to old country recipes
and you will likely find that they are the closest to ancient recipes
as these have been passed through the family.

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