Month: November 2015

Books! $10-$20

There are hundreds of brewing books out there, and thankfully there are books for any level of brewer. I’ll begin with beginner books and move on to more complex ideas. Beginner brewers These two books are both classics for beginner brewers. They cover theory and really answer a lot of questions that pop up in […]

DIY Kegerator – $320

For less than half of the price of the fancy kegerator you can buy a kit to turn an existing fridge into a kegerator. This kit gives you kegs, lines, taps and faucets. Add a 5# co2 tank to it and you are ready to roll for under $350. I want to add that this […]

Temperature monitoring – Beer Bug – $200

The beer bug is a great tool that measures the temp of your beer and relays that info to the web. It has a great iphone app that allows you to monitor your progress as well. Temperature is important because yeast puts off heat when it works, and that heat can be used as a […]

Kegerator – $750

Owning a kegerator is a shared dream of most homebrewers. Not only does it make you feel like you own a bar, it allows you to serve fresh beer at a moment’s notice and it saves you a lot of time spent in bottling. This setup has everything your brewer would need to start kegging […]

Wort chiller – $90

Reducing brewing time The biggest time-sink in brewing is cooling the beer (technically called wort, but whatever) down from boiling at 212 to around 70 degrees. This can take over an hour if you don’t do anything special, but it can be cut to under 10 minutes if you put a little bit of effort behind […]

Black towels – $4

For washing, drying and keeping spills off of your countertops I cannot recommend anything simpler and cheaper than BLACK TOWELSGo to Amazon, buy four for $3-5 each, and be happy. Seriously. Black because they won’t be stained by the dark wort. Towels because that way no one will be tempted to use the kitchen towels, […]

Javelin Pro Thermometer – $50

The first step in brewing beer (called mashing) is very temperature sensitive. A difference in 5 degrees can mean your beer is noticeably sweeter, or higher in alcohol. Being able to measure temperature quickly and precisely is critical. This thermometer the Javelin Pro is a great balance of a rugged, precise thermometer that also isn’t […]

Picobrew Zymatic $2000

Some homebrewers get more interested in the recipe formulation while others tinker with the process or the equipment. The Picobrew is an ‘appliance’ that handles most of the steps of making beer in a efficient robotic manner. This can appeal to some people because they like the planning and the drinking part, but they don’t necessarily enjoy […]

Brewing software – beersmith – $20

Brewing can be simple, but it takes a lot of knowledge and hard work to make it look simple. This software is amazing because it calculates everything about your beer, from calories to end volume to alcohol %. That alone makes it a lot easier to build and tweak recipes, and that means you end up brewing […]

Chugger Pump $140

A lot of brewing involves moving hot liquids around. That can be done by opening up a spigot, starting a siphon, or using a pump. The pump is the only thing that can move the beer vertically up, and it can also be much safer and less back-breaking than the other options.   This pump […]