In the pursuit of perfect homebrew, failure still makes beer.


The Birth of Big Blue – How to Build a DIY Cooler Mash Tun

Creating something from scratch is always an adventure. I’ve seen as much from my DIY immersion coil, at least. But this is big – I’m going all-grain. The dream has been realized. I feel comfortable enough with my progress as a homebrewer to justify the investment of time, money, and effort into my future beers. I know there will probably be some failures – in the construction of both beers and equipment – but getting to this point is worth a celebration in itself. So huzzah to me!

Now that I’ve sufficiently patted myself on the back, and I’ve already bought my next all-grain barley and hop bills, it’s time to get down to bidness: the bidness of building your own mash-tun. First off, if you’re reading this in hopes to get your own equipment project off the ground, congrats on making the jump. All-grain brewing is definitely the purest and most brewer-controlled method of making homebrewed beers, and you’ve likely run through your share of extract or partial mash brew days. This is a whole new ballgame, ladies and gentlemen. Welcome to the big leagues.




What Will You Come Up With Under the Influence? Beer and the Do-It-Yourself Revolution

I’ve just finished reading this article (catching up on beer reading, it’s been a busy few months!) written by an assistant research professor Arizona State University. The author has a very poignant point of view about the homebrewing hobby, beer experimentation, and the craft beer explosion in general:

The oldest persisting food purity law in the world is the German Rheinheitsgebot… While this law ensured the quality, tradition, and purity of beer in Germany, it also stifled experimentation and innovation by prohibiting brewers from testing other ingredients. The Belgian monks, by contrast, were free to develop complex and innovative beer styles during the last few centuries by adding fruits, spices, wild yeast and bacteria, and other cereal grains, like wheat, to their ales. This experimental spirit has been embraced by today’s do-it-yourself home brewers and craft brewers in the United States, which is currently regarded as the most innovative and exciting country for craft beer.

“Beer goggles” are considered a terrible thing, especially on college campuses. But I believe beer is the perfect lens through which to examine innovation(more…)

All-Grain REMIX – Celebration Pale Ale

About 6 weeks ago, a little holiday rolled around in March that usually calls for the proclamation of your Gaelic heritage, whether lineage states it as a fact or not. Said holiday persuaded me to not only celebrate my half-Irish-ness (for real!) by brewing a homebrew on the morn’ o’ that sacred day whence to feast in memory of St. Patrick, but to also venture into all-grain brewing. (more…)

Who’s got birthday money to burn, a need for a wort chiller, and two thumbs?

After successfully turning 23, I found this immersion chiller DIY. It seems to be the simplest of all those out there, and I’ll be building it shortly (like, this week). I want to brew another few batches this month to take advantage of summer brew time. Especially since I’ll be in my apartment sans roommate for the next month – moving out to Newport, RI – my only true roommate will be a bubbling fermentor.