Learn To Brew
- Most homebrewers brew five gallon batches of beer at a time – this is equal to about 53 12 oz bottles!
- If you can make a cup of tea, you can make beer! It’s easy, rewarding and a heck of a good time.
- It takes about 5-6 weeks for beer to be ready once its been brewed.
- You can make ANY style of beer at home – there are no limitations!
The Three Different Types of Brewing
- Extract Brewing: This is where most all homebrewers start. The “Extract” comes from using malt extracts (either liquid or dry) to obtain fermentable sugars which yeast will turn into alcohol. With extract brewing, flavor and color come from steeping speciality grains for half an hour in some water that is 150 F. This type of brewing requires the least amount of equipment and time and it’s a great place to start in learning the brewing process. We have dozens of extract ingredient kits available to help you get started!
- Partial Mash / Mini-Mash Brewing: In this type of brewing, malt extracts are replaced by base grain which is then mashed (mixed with hot water) to produce fermentable sugars. This base grain is mixed with the specialty grains and is steeped (mashed) for 60 minutes rather than 30 minutes. Most brewers will start partial mash brewing after becoming comfortable with extract brewing and are looking to create their own recipes. This type of brewing requires a little more equipment than extract but not much. Usually a large strainer and an extra brew pot is sufficient.
- All Grain Brewing: This is the real deal in brewing. It is the same process that commerical breweries use to make beer. Compared to the other types of brewing, it requies much more equipment, much more time on brew day and a lot more recipe calculation. However, the rewards from all grain brewing are limitless. At a minimum, you’ll need a hot liquor tank, a mash tun, a brew kettle, a high output burner, and either a wort chiller or cold plate to cool your brew down after its been brewed. With all grain brewing, you use only grain to extract the fermentable sugars, usually around 10 pounds per five gallon batch.
- One Gallon All Grain Brewing: This type of brewing has become popular lately as it gives beginner brewers the benefit of all grain brewing without all the hassle of all of the all grain equipment. One gallon batches produce about 10 12 oz bottles of beer and use the same process as partial / mini-mashing.
What You’ll Need to Get Started with Extract Brewing
- At the most basic level, you’ll need an equipment kit, an ingredient kit, some sanitizer, a kettle and some bottles to put your beer into.
- Ales like to ferment around 70F and lagers around 55 F, so you’ll need someplace in your house or apartment that holds those types of temperatures.
- On brew day, you’ll want to block off at least 4 hours to make an extract batch of beer.
How Much Does it Cost to Get Into Brewing?
- For extract brewing, our five gallon basic equipment kit is $79.99 and ingredient kits range from $35 to $70 depending on the style brewed. Sanitizers start at $5.99, 5 gallon kettles start at $34.99 and bottles start at $14.99 per case.
- We also carry 1 gallon equipment and ingredient kits as well. A very basic 1 gallon equipment setup and ingredients would cost less than $40.
- We also carry Mr. Beer brewing equipment and ingredients which produces 2 gallon batches. These equipment kits are $43.99 and include the first batch of beer.
How Do I Get Started?
- If you’re in the area, come on in and we’ll show you the ropes! If you’re not in the area, then we recommend picking up either How to Brew by John Palmer or The Complete Joy of Homebrewing by Charlie Papazian. Both texts are fun to read, educational and written with the homebrewer in mind. Remember, Don’t Worry, Relax, and have a homebrew!