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Showing posts from February, 2015

The Grainfather - Electric All-in-One Home Brewing System

Yesterday I received my first copy of Brew Your Own magazine.  In it I saw an ad for something called The Grainfather.  Currently listed on Kickstarter to obtain crowdfunding for a U.S. launch of the product, The Grainfather (pictured at the left) is an all-in-one system for home brewing.

I read some reviews of the product and found a copy of its instruction manual online.  It looks like it makes all-grain brewing a lot simpler and easier.
In the device, you can mash your grain bill, sparge it, boil the wort, chill it to yeast pitching temperature with the counterflow chiller pictured next to it (looks like a big hose), and pump it into your fermenter.  The only thing not included is the fermenter and a place to hold/heat your sparge water... but if you have an existing brew kettle you can use The Grainfather to boil a batch of sparge water and use the built-in pumps to pump it into a kettle or stainless steel fermenter to cool down to sparge temperature while mashing the grain in Th…

An Overview of the Basic Home Brewing Process

If you've ever enjoyed a good craft beer, you may be wondering what was involved in making that beer.  In this post, I'm going to provide an overview of what the home brewing process looks like. Depending on the style of beer you choose to brew, the exact steps may vary slightly from what I describe here, but this should be generic enough to show you the basics.

You begin by choosing a beer recipe.  There are lots of great recipes in books and online.  (There are also probably some bad ones, so you need to be careful here.)  You may also choose to purchase a pre-assembled, pre-measured kit.  Kits are a good way to be sure you've found a decent recipe and have all the necessary ingredients available to you, but they may be a little more expensive than assembling your own ingredients.

Once you have your recipe and have assembled and measured your ingredients, you can begin brewing. A very high-level view of the process is:

Create a wort (a concoction of hops, malt, and other …

Buckeye Brewcraft - Westerville

Today, I visitedBuckeye Brewcraft.  Located on North State Street in Westerville, the shop offers a good variety of home brewing equipment and ingredients.
Buckeye Brewcraft also features wine making and home soda making equipment and ingredients as well.
Although I didn't do an extensive comparison, prices seemed competitive with mail order home brewing suppliers, especially when you factor in shipping costs.
Inside the shop, you'll find an array of spices and flavorings for home brewing, such as sweet orange peel, cardamom, and cinnamon sticks.  You'll find fruit essences (e.g., blueberry flavoring).  You'll find a wide variety of grains, extracts, hops, and yeasts.
They also feature a good supply of brewing and bottling equipment.  I saw bottle cappers, brew kettles, mash tuns, wine presses, empty bottles, the FastFerment fermenter, used corny kegs, bottling buckets, hoses, airlocks, caps, and much more.
They offer kits for a variety of beer styles, as well as bulk ingre…

It's Time to "Begin Brewing"

There is a lot to learn and know about brewing beer.  I've been doing it for a few years now, and I definitely don't consider myself an expert.  I've made mistakes that required me to toss out a batch of beer, mistakes that resulted in a beer that didn't meet my expectations, and mistakes that cost me some extra money.  If you're interested in brewing your own beer but feel like you have a lot to learn, I understand your concern and I built this blog to help folks like you.  I want to help you make good choices of equipment, pick recipes that challenge you but don't exceed your skill level, show you how to do some basic things in brewing, and hopefully help you avoid the mistakes I made early on.

You might see posts like these in the coming weeks:

Articles about brewing terminology like wort, flocculate, sparge, and attenuationSelecting the right equipment to start out"Brew along" posts showing a beer from recipe selection through bottling
Beer recipes …