With the ongoing hop shortage people are looking for other ways to bitter their beer. Here’s an interesting idea from the East Germans as documented in the New York Times back in 1991.
“They convinced us that to be competitive, we had to brew under the German beer purity law,” Mr. Funk said. “And they created marketing and advertising concepts for our products. Before unity we used to put cattle bile in our beer to give it the bitter flavor of hops, which we couldn’t always get.” The brewery now spends $533,333 annually on advertising, compared with $6,666 under Communism.
Cattle bile does sound bitter.