Craft brewing is one of the best ways to appreciate the science and art of beer. It’s so well-loved that there are around 8,764 craft breweries in the USA alone. If you enjoy doing this craft, then we have a few tips you can follow to step up your game. In this article, you will find tips and new brewing techniques such as preparing the yeast a day before, boiling the brew in solar-powered kettles before adding hops, and barrel-aging.
Avoid Using Plastic
Although these are cheaper, the best ones are still glass vessels and funnels. They are heavier than plastic and there’s a lesser chance of leaking. The best part is that it’s easier to sanitize. Skimping on equipment might lead to reducing your brew’s quality.
Invest in Yeast Starters
Your brew will be nothing without yeast starters. That’s why you should always prioritize buying only the best. Moreover, you should always ensure they are kept in the best conditions so they can last you longer.
An active yeast lowers the chances of being contaminated. You can either buy premade yeast or make one on your own. We suggest a DIY yeast so you can save up money. Having one will also mean you won’t need to buy them again and again in stores.
Always Prep the Yeast
If you do plan on making your yeast starter, you’ll have to be patient. It takes 24 hours to keep it reproducing. This is also possible after the half-hour fermentation. It’s best to make them ahead before you start with your brew.
If you add them right away, it won’t work. You might end up contaminating the brew.
Make Sanitation a Priority
We can’t stress this enough. You need to keep your area clean. Your equipment should also be properly sanitized. If you don’t, then you’ll just end up ruining your brew. Sanitizing reduces the risk of contaminating your brew. Additionally, you should also buy a coiled immersion chiller. This is one of the safest and fastest ways you can cool your wort. Additionally, it’s very easy to clean.
You should also cover any open surfaces after boiling. You can use lids and some paper towels with alcohol on small areas that can’t be covered.
If you’ve been doing this for a while and want to take it further, why not try barrel aging? It has a unique taste and it can make your brew better. But before you buy a barrel, you need to understand first that it’s all about the surface-to-volume ratio when it comes to the wood aging.
What does that mean? If you want it to age quickly, you have to have a smaller barrel volume to make a larger surface area. The best way to start this is by using a small barrel before you work your way up.
If you’re a beginner, you will need to regularly taste test it. You will also be the one to decide when it’s ready to be served. However, this process can take you a few weeks to finish. It’s a great experience and a great way for you to learn new methods.
Find the Right Level of Alcohol
Avoid alcohol poisoning by making sure you have the right alcohol level. Although this one can be tricky to do, you’ll need to monitor your ratios and processes very closely.
There’s more flavor when it comes to stronger beer since it has a higher alcohol level. On the other hand, you might end up making your alcohol level too light.
If you’re a first-timer, you should go between the ranges of 5% to 7% ABV. Don’t try to go too light since it’s going to be harder to fix that. Also, do it in smaller batches so that it will be easier to manage.
In the chance that your brew boils over, it going to be hard to clean the kitchen. The best way is to heat your brew in a large area like your driveway, garage, or patio with a propane burner. You can also use solar kettles to boil the brew before adding hops.
There’s a lot to learn about brewing your beer. Sometimes, it takes more effort when you plan to do something unique. While learning the science behind it is useful, appreciating the creativity behind it is what makes it extra special.