Some beer makers claim that if you can boil water and follow a recipe, you can make good beer. So, the first rule of thumb in beer making is: follow the recipe and instructions that come with your equipment or beer making kit!
You will need a cool, dark space large enough to hold your fermenting bottles, at least two feet by two feet. A closet will do. You’ll also need a stove and water.
The procedures involved in beer making can be boiled down to three main stages:
combining the ingredients and initiating fermentation
transferring the fermented beer, first into a secondary fermenter and then into bottles
bottling, capping and storing your beer for further maturation and clarification.
Within each of these stages, following proper sanitizing, measuring, siphoning and sealing procedures are essential to prevent bacteria and produce great-tasting beer.
Temperature control is also essential during all stages and during storage. Yeast and enzymes are especially sensitive to the temperature of their environment, and inappropriate temperatures at any stage can destroy your beer.
Aside from precise temperature control, precise measuring of ingredients is also essential. Many beer ingredient kits will come with pre-measured ingredients, but if you are going ‘from scratch’, follow the measurements recommended in your instruction booklet and record any variations so you can track successes and failures.
For more information on home beer making, and to reach some of the industry’s leading suppliers, check out the shopping links at the top of this page!