hist-brewing: about marsh rosemary--

Steven Thomas fabricus at hvi.net
Wed Jul 16 18:05:23 PDT 2003

    Marsh rosemary is native to the far north, from the tundra/taiga 
country south.  It probably doesn't need amazingly cold winters though; the 
short stature is a means of hiding under the snow from the worst of the 
cold.  The Siskiyou nursery folks seem to have no problem growing it in 
southern Oregon.  I would think that if you get a month of cold weaving up 
and down through the freezing mark it will do ok.
    I have used Labrador tea as a substitute for marsh rosemary in making 
some gruits.  It adds a pleasant drying tannic quality from boil additions 
(along the lines of black tea or raspberry leaf), and a pine 
needle-herbal-fruity aroma from late additions.  If it's the drug effects 
you're asking about, I haven't noticed any, although I havn't tried 
optimizing that.  The drug properties are reputed to be enhanced by a long 
boil, and I have a hard time forgoing the aromatics that get boiled 
off.  Tannins have a bad rap in modern brewing, but they can be used to 
ballance the malt seeetness like bitterness.
    My marsh rosemary will probably be a few years getting established 
enough to sustain harvesting.
                 --Steve Thomas

>From: "Paloma Hill" <peeweenation at myfastmail.com>
>To: hist-brewing at pbm.com
>Date: Tue, 15 Jul 2003 00:40:06 -0800
>Subject: hist-brewing: Re: growing marsh rosemary
>Steve - you seem very knowledgeable about this - and willing to do the
>work to make a go.  Two questions:
>1) what climates/zones do you believe marsh rosemary requires?
>2) have you (or anyone else) brewed with labrador tea &/or marsh rosemary
>(decumbens)?  If so, what differences do you see?
>opps - that's 3 questions!

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