Homebrewing

I started homebrewing here in Heidelberg, Germany in 2018. Suffice to say, beer has always been an interest of mine and during my undergraduate degree at the University of Leeds, I was given the opportunity to study a module called traditional alcoholic beverages that was all about the production of wine and beer. If you are a student at Leeds Uni, I would highly recommend this course. If not, I would highly recommend Leeds University.

I (try to) brew on a budget and want to show that you can definitely start making your own beer without breaking the bank. You can see my own current homebrew setup here. I will also be posting some delicious homebrew recipes beer on this page here.

Looking to get into homebrewing?

It’s really not so hard and, while a little upfont cost is required, your first beer really doesn’t have to be so expensive either. I started out by buying the Breferm deluxe starter kit from Brouwland.com. This set me back EUR 69.95 and I don’t regret it for a second as it comes with everything you need to start brewing from extract. If you want to save a little money, I would also recommend the Brewferm Starter kit basic plus, coming in at under EUR 50. You can go cheaper, but the real advantage (in my opinion) is that they come with a hydrometer which is essential for calculating the amount of alcohol in your beer, and the only way to be sure that fermentation has gone off without a hitch. Add to this an extract kit for EUR 20–30 for a 40 pint kit and you’re good to go! My personal recommendation has to be the Woodforde’s Brewery extract kits by Muntons, but as a Norfolk boy I’m bound to be biased. All you need then is some bottles to put the beer in but I’m sure you’ll be able to work out how to get your hands on some empty beer bottles.

  • A mead update! (15/11/2019) - It has been a long time since I posted anything and I think that it is time for a mead update! I made mead a few months ago and I can report that it has been finished and bottled for about a month now. So how does it look? How did it get here? And, most importantly, how does it taste? In this followup to my earlier post, I'll go through the fermentation, conditioning, bottling and first tasting of the mead.
  • Making mead (30/7/2019) - Summer is most definitely here and you know what that means! Only a few months until Autumn! And what better drink for when the nights begin to darken and the days get increasingly nippy?
  • Emergency Extract IPA (22/7/2019) - So as you may have read, my all in one system is currently out of action. But never fear, extract is here! I was going to make an American style IPA and I didn’t want all of those delicious hops to go to waste so I ordered some extract and just got on with it. […]
  • My brew kettle broke (21/7/2019) - So after only five completed brews I find myself in the situation where my Klarstein all-in-one system has broken down. I decided that now might be a good time to write a bit about what I think of the system.
  • Rhubarb cider – the tasting (28/6/2019) - I made some cider with Rhubarb juice in it. This is the story of how that cider tasted.
  • Slightly Red Ale tasting (5/6/2019) - A few weeks ago I played around brewing a beer with some Melanoidin and CaraRed to produce something that would hopefully have a nice red colour. Here is how it turned out.
  • Rhubarb Cider (31/5/2019) - So after my first attempt at making some cider, I decided to head back to the market to grab another gallon of apple juice to use up the other half of the cider yeast. But this time I also went to the shop for some rhubarb nectar to add to the mix.
  • My first cider: the tasting (10/5/2019) - So after a week and a half in the primary, one minor explosion, and a few weeks conditioning in the bottle, my first ever cider is finally ready for tasting! So how did it go and how does it taste?
  • Slightly Reddish-Brown Ale (3/5/2019) - Last Sunday was my first brew day since starting this blog and that's quite exciting! I wanted to experiment with a couple of malts that I've not used before so I bought some CaraRed and some Melanoidin malt to make something a a bit red in colour but what we ended up with is definitely brown. That's fine, every home brew is a bit of an experiment and I'm fairly confident that the beer will be delicious whatever happens.
  • Wine from concentrate II: How bad can it be? (2/4/2019) - Finally! The bottling and first tasting of the first wine I made. But can a wine made from a bag of juice concentrate be any good?