Friday, January 18, 2013

Make your own Counter-Flow Wort Chiller

     Okay, so you're interested in making your own home-brewing station and you've got most of the equipment all sorted, but you're running into a wall with how to chill your wort. Just going to your local home-brewing store and buying the setup would be the easiest thing to do, but let's just say you want to pinch a few pennies and make your own wort cooling system. Here's where we come in. With a small trip to the local hardware store and a budget of under $50, my brother and I have created a basic but effective wort chilling system that works like a charm. Here's what you'll need:

Thursday, January 17, 2013

You Can Have Whatever You Want

   Our mission statement says that we want this to become an interactive blog between the writers and the readers. So I have had a novel idea, you are going to give us a new topic! Ask any question about home brewing or beer in general, the best part of this is that it can be anything! The more questions you ask the more questions we will answer.
     I will leave you with a little taste of what the future will hold. Plans are in the working to build a mash tun so that we can change our system to a full grain, these plans and hopefully photos of us building this will be put on here within the next few months. I am also going to post a step by step brew from start to finish in the most simple form. Hopefully by seeing this, you will be inspired to go out and try home brewing as well. Big things are happening in the home brewing world and we will be bringing them to you every week. Until next time, keep your glasses full!

Wednesday, January 16, 2013

Lager Lager Lager

     Now that we have covered the ales, we must now turn our focus to lagers. Remember that I mentioned earlier that the main distinction of lagers is that they use bottom fermenting yeast that ferment optimally at colder temperatures. Until the invention of refrigeration (mid 1800's), lagers were brewed during the winter in caves. Large chunks of ice were cut from the local water supply and then taken down to the caves and used to keep the cold temperatures in there for very long periods of time. Needless to say this was time consuming and not too efficient. Refrigeration allowed brewers to brew lagers year round in their lagering cellars and allowed consumers to consume these beer in mass quantities.

Brewing Technologies: Cooling your wort

     One of the main obstacles that you will encounter while home brewing a batch of beer is the need to cool your boiling wort (approximately at 180 to 200 degrees Fahrenheit) to a much lower temperature (around 75 degrees Fahrenheit) in order to be able to pitch the yeast. Initially, one may think that simply dunking the pot into an ice bath would work, but this method is archaic and inefficient, not to mention time consuming. Here's where most home brewer's have to make a major decision with what way you should cool your wort. The two most common options available are the immersion or the counter-flow wort chiller, and both have their ups and downs.

A Tale of an Ale

                Alright now that you are in deep and already reading the second posting of this blog, we need to establish one extremely important ground rule. This is the only rule I will ever make about the reading of this blog; while you are reading this you must be in the process of enjoying a beer. It doesn't matter what kind of beer it is as long as you are enjoying it to the fullest.
                Now that we have the ground rules established it is time to expand on the topic of last time; ales and lagers. Today let’s focus on the ale side of the family. Now your typical styles might include Brown Ales, Amber Ales, and Indian Pale Ales. What gives it away that they are ales? That’s right the name! But there are plenty of other beer styles that are considered ales without the word incorporated into the name. A few that we will discuss today are going to be Wheat Beers, Porters, and Stouts.

Tuesday, January 15, 2013

Brewing Technologies: An Introduction

     Hello and welcome to the first post of many that will attempt to expand your home-brewing knowledge of the mechanical and technological side of making beer. There are many cool gadgets that can be obtained for your own personal home brewing setups, all of which can hold individual functions that will affect the end result of your brewing process in adverse ways (some more than others). Over the span of this blog, I will try to bring you information on these systems that will ultimately help you simplify, expand or even start your own home brewing kits.
     One of the main worries of home brewing is that the costs of getting all of the said 'cool gadgets' can end up leaving you with a lot less money in your pocket, but that is not going to be the goal of these posts. Making pieces to your home brewing system by hand and at a relatively low cost can be a very satisfying experience, and there will be several guides and how-to's on making some of your own equipment.
     So once again, welcome to the beginning of the Home Brewing Brothers blog.

Stay classy.

Introduction to Beer

                In the beginning beer was, well, just another drink. However ancient man knew that this drink made him feel good inside. Some cultures even used beer as a drink in which to connect with the gods. Today however we know that the complex science of combining water filled with fermentable sugar and other spices with yeast causes a biological reaction to produce carbon dioxide bubbles and alcohol. Because of our better understanding we have been able to create many different styles of beer that allow people of different tastes to enjoy.