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Brewing TV - Episode 24: Sahti Throwdown


Original Postdate: Nov. 19, 2010

- Guest hosts Michael Agnew (A Perfect Pint) & Mark Roberts
- Sahti brew session

Brewing TV is not just about three dudes and a camera running wild through the worlds of homebrewing and craft beer. Every now and then, we like to find people making unique creations and pass the mic. So be it.

This episode, guest hosts Michael Agnew (A Perfect Pint) and Mark Roberts brew sahti, a traditional beer from Finland. Sahti is no regular beer. Authentic versions are unhopped, unboiled and enjoyed fresh out of the fermenter. Michael & Mark make some tweaks to the process for the sake of modernity and storage, but this brew session is none the less unique.

Grab a pint, a few branches of juniper, and enjoy!

Related Links

Michael & Mark's sahti recipe 

Dawson's Blog (including recipe for hopped sahti) from Northern Brewer: The Blog

A Perfect Pint - For beer tastings & events

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    I have ever seen such wide variety of brewing techniques and variations in most of the flavors. It's very surprising to watch all the procedures followed here. And i am very excited to try this at home. Most of the time i look forward to new tastes, your ideas helped me ...
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    Brewing TV - Episodes - Brewing TV - Episode 24: Sahti Throwdown

Reader Comments (31)

Another great episode. It's always nice seeing different styles being brewed and it was a pleasure watching this one. Nice work. I want a Sahti now.

November 19, 2010 | Unregistered CommenterKirk

What is a stormstorm?

November 19, 2010 | Unregistered Commenterwzl46

The recipe link doesn't work. I would love to try it, I have juniper in my yard.

November 19, 2010 | Unregistered CommenterGary

@ Gary - Link fixed, sorry about that. Also check out Dawson's version linked under the episode for a hopped version.

November 19, 2010 | Registered CommenterChip

Cool episode. It would be fun to sample this stuff. I like the voyeuristic shot from the bushes when you are filming the guys. :) Love the come back shot to the snowy yard with the guys in the chairs. Good work.

November 19, 2010 | Unregistered CommenterDonO

Nice work Chip. Really good episode with an interesting beer.

November 19, 2010 | Unregistered CommenterSasquatch

New Belgium has a Sahti out right now. Picked one up today after watching this.

November 20, 2010 | Unregistered CommenterChris Lehr

Another champion episode. Is it me or does Mark Roberts looks very much like Gaear Grimsrud (played by Peter Stormare) from the movie Fargo?

November 20, 2010 | Unregistered CommenterJohnnyB

mmmmmm twiggy!

another great episode

wish I was brewing, but am taking the weekend off

looking forward to the regular hosts being back in action

November 20, 2010 | Unregistered CommenterRuffdeezy

Excellent episode. Very interesting to explore that style of beer, which was new to me. The follow up tasteings are always a good source of information and evaluation. Keep the episodes comeing, I've watched every one since the start.

November 22, 2010 | Unregistered CommenterVince Carlo

I wonder if varying the amount of twig/green material would make a difference...

November 24, 2010 | Unregistered CommenterEvan

Good on you fellas.
Big shoes to fill but you did well.
Anything extra...ordinary is appreciated.
Go wild.
Harry from Newcastle, New South Wales, Australia

November 25, 2010 | Unregistered CommenterHarry Volting

Unbeknown to Mark I did trim the "leaves" from the twigs this time. While still twiggy, it did have more of the nutty/spruce juniper flavor than past attempts. However, twiggy is good. The authentic versions we have tried from Finnland also taste twiggy.


November 25, 2010 | Unregistered Commenteraperfectpint

Anyone know if the species of Juniper makes a difference? Being down here in Texas (no snow), I'm surrounded by plentiful Ashe's Juniper, commonly called "cedar" (which it isn't). I did a search and found little, other than one source that said the berries might cause stomach problems.

November 29, 2010 | Unregistered CommenterMickp

MickP: I think the Juniper species might make a difference. The Juniper in Finland is more of a low bush in the forest. Here it's more like a tree. I did think about bringing some branches back, but with luggage restrictions what they are, and the fact that I was already smuggling live yeast cultures into the country, I thought maybe it wasn't a good idea.

Chris: The New Belgium Sahti is a great beer - but it's not Sahti. The use of hops, carbonation, and lack of thick, twiggy sweetness make it an altogether different drink. Nice though!

JohnnyB: I am a man of many faces.

November 30, 2010 | Unregistered CommenterMark Roberts

That's Finnish for cheers. :)

December 1, 2010 | Unregistered Commenternotrealdan

Awsome Episode!

December 1, 2010 | Unregistered CommenterEscoBrew

This is one of my favorite episodes to date. Mark and Micheal, you did a great job guest hosting. I loved seeing the different homebrewing quirks and different insight. Now if I ever make it to Finland I'll have to find some authentic sahti to try.

December 4, 2010 | Unregistered CommenterKarl

Hi guys, really nice episode. I noticed question on why sahti is not boiled. I can not answer for Finnish sahti but there is very very similar style in Estonia called koduõlu (literally tanslates to homebrew or homebrewed beer) and I know a bit about it.

Most likely sahti is not boiled because it's very old beer style (there are evidence that such beer has been brewed more than 800 years ago, possibly much earlier) and for most of it's existance metal kettles were not available or kettles large enough to boil entire brew were not affordable for folks who made sahti. Mashing temperatures were reached by dropping hot stones to mash. Koduõlu (Estonian version of sahti) is traditionally made on wooden vessels.

January 9, 2011 | Unregistered CommenterTarmo Tali

Thanks for that Tarmo. Most interesting.

January 9, 2011 | Unregistered Commenteraperfectpint

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