Homebrew beer fermenting in carboy - photo by geoffeg

I've been brewing my own beer at home for 14 years now and although it is easy... it does require some specialized equipment and quite a bit of homework.  I could have never done it without Charlie Papazian's The New Complete Joy of Home Brewing - AKA "The Bible" for novice and experienced homebrewers alike.  Basically, anyone who enjoys making their own suds.  You can brew as basic or as complex of beer as you like to.  

I have gone as far as making "Mocha Stout"  by adding cacao powder and espresso to a stout.  "Chile Lime Pulque" which was brewed using Agave malt extract (instead of barley malt extract), adding lime, and then dropping a chile into every bottle.  Spicy spicy stuff.  "Kava Kava Cranberry Mint" started as an American Ale with Kava Kava, cranberry, and you guessed it... mint.  Go nuts.

After you are all set up and prepped, it takes about 4 hours to make 5 gallons.  I'm already including extra time in there for clean up too, which can get a little messy.  That's enough beer to fill (53) 12-ounce bottles, or if you're lazy like me, (21) 22-ounce bottles and some change.  

There is really only a 2 hour commitment (at minimum) to cook the wort [which is pronounced WERT], 10 days or so in the fermenter, and about 2 hours to bottle.  Two more weeks to ferment in the bottle and you're ready to drink it!

Recently I discovered MR.BEER , and at first I doubted the efficacy of brewing without 5 gallon buckets, a carboy, an air lock, and all those tubes that my wife adores when I hang them all over the kitchen to dry!  But then I saw this video of Garrett Oliver demonstrating it on YouTube.  He's the Brewmaster of The Brooklyn Brewery, and the author of The Brewmaster's Table: Discovering the Pleasures of Real Beer with Real Food.  So in my game, he's legit!

This is not going to replace the bucket method and grain pushers the world over don't have to worr.  But what I like about ths system  is that someone can TRY homebrewing without much investment; in their time or money.  They offer a pretty large selection try experiment with different styles and the starter kits are only $40 here.



Authordavid koch
CategoriesDrinks, Science