4 Tips and Tricks to Make the Best Home Brew
More and more Americans are turning away from mass produced beer. Today, at last 12% of the beer industry market belongs to small and independent craft brewers. At least 24.5 million barrels of beer were produced throughout the country in 2015. That represented a 13% increase in the volume of craft beer that was was produced. These local brews were worth about $22.3 billion, which represents a 16% increase in value. That same year, there was an increase of 15% in the number of local breweries around the nation. The growing popularity of micro-brews and craft beers has made home brewing a lot more popular. Here are some tips to help you get started brewing your own beer.
- Be careful when you go to bottle your beer. It does not matter if you are handling growler fills or basic bottles, this can be a very messy part of your home brew process. First of all, if you bought a kit that has a bottling process, make sure you read all of the instructions. Some systems need two people to manage the bottling process. If you try to do this by yourself when the manufacturer recommends two people, you will end up with your local beer everywhere in your space. Another good tip for this part of the process is to do it on your dishwasher. Put the bottles or growlers in the dishwasher and the bucket of brew on your counter. Any beer that you spill will just go harmlessly into your dishwasher. This will make any spills much easier to deal with.
- Spring for the larger kettle. Even if you have a kit, you need to get a brew kettle. If you think that creating your own local brew is something you are going to want to do more than once, you are going to need a larger kettle. There are several reasons you should just start out with the larger equipment. First of all, when you are cooking it, you will have less of a chance that it will boil over. In the second place, you are going to want to make more product than you can make in a smaller kettle. It just makes more sense to buy the larger equipment early in the process. Cleaning up your stove after your product has boiled over is a horrible experience that you should do whatever you can to avoid. Larger kettles can be very helpful in this process.
- Just as you want a larger kettle, you should get a larger auto siphon. Your auto siphon is crucial to move your product from the different places it is housed during the process. You will have an easier time doing just that if you have an auto siphon that is larger. You can lose a lot of product when you are transferring it from one container to another. After you have spent a lot of time working on your precious home brew, you will not want to lose even a drop.
- Go the extra mile and invest in a wort chiller. When you are making your local brew, the last thing you want is to find you have a contaminated product. The best way you can prevent that from happening is to chill your wort. The quicker this can be accomplished, the lower the chances are that it will end up being contaminated in the process. Even if you buy a ton of ice to bath your kettle in, the cooling can still take a while. Most people report this needs between 40 minutes to more than 60. That may not seem like a lot of time but bacteria does not need long to grow and reproduce. With a wort chiller, you can get up to five gallons cooled in under 20 minutes. When you brew own beer, you are going to want to share it with your friends and family. The last thing you want is to serve contaminated beer to the people you know and care about.
More and more people are looking to buy local products. From local produce to local brews. You do not get much more local than beer you made in your home!