I bet it must be nice for President Obama’s people to be inundated by something positive for a change. When the White House announced that the kitchen was going to be homebrewing, even using honey made by White House bees, people wanted to know what the recipe was for the two beers they were brewing. After a petition to release the recipes garnered over 12,000 signatures, the White House did release the recipes on the White House Blog and their We the People page, a Honey Ale and a Honey Porter. Here was the White House response:
Inspired by home brewers from across the country, last year President Obama bought a home brewing kit for the kitchen. After the few first drafts we landed on some great recipes that came from a local brew shop. We received some tips from a couple of home brewers who work in the White House who helped us amend it and make it our own. To be honest, we were surprised that the beer turned out so well since none of us had brewed beer before.
As far as we know the White House Honey Brown Ale is the first alcohol brewed or distilled on the White House grounds. George Washington brewed beer and distilled whiskey at Mount Vernon and Thomas Jefferson made wine but there’s no evidence that any beer has been brewed in the White House. (Although we do know there was some drinking during prohibition…)
Since our first batch of White House Honey Brown Ale we’ve added the Honey Porter and have gone even further to add a Honey Blonde this past summer. Like many home brewers who add secret ingredients to make their beer unique, all of our brews have honey that we tapped from the first ever bee-hive on the South Lawn. The honey gives the beer a rich aroma and a nice finish but it doesn’t sweeten it.
And here’s the recipe for the Honey Ale:
The White House also created a short video about the homebrew project.
And here’s the recipe for the Honey Porter:
Wondering how the recipe might work out? Garrett Oliver, brewmaster at Brooklyn Brewing expressed his opinion in the New York Times, in White House Beer: A Brewer Weighs In.