Published on December 13th, 2013 | by Joe Korbuszewski0
Prove your love, make your beer
Beer is a fascinating thing. The process that begins in a field of barley and ends in your foam-laced glass is a thing of beauty and has captivated mankind for roughly six thousand years.
Walking through a modern brewery, it’s easy to get overwhelmed by all of that shiny stainless steel, but fear not – brewing beer is easier than it looks and you can accomplish the same feat in your own kitchen (albeit on a much smaller scale).
Home brewing has seen a surge in popularity over the past five years and it seems that everyone from college kids to middle-aged dads are taking over their stovetops to make their own versions of America’s favorite alcoholic beverage.
There is nothing that makes you appreciate your favorite IPA more than an understanding of how it got into your glass. Once you brew your own, your respect and love for your favorite brewer will increase tenfold. Plus, there are few things more rewarding than opening a bottle of your beer. Once you take that first sip that has been brewed, fermented, and bottled by your own hand, you’ll understand.
So how easy is it to make beer?
Let’s start with these two questions: Can you follow the directions to make a simple soup? Do you love doing dishes? If you answer yes to either of these, then you can brew your own beer and lucky for you, we have our very own home brew supply store in Tacoma.
Jason Trujillo, owner of Mash, has everything you need to make your own beer. He even offers classes at Mash for beginners. Jason has been brewing for about ten years and has a wealth of knowledge as well as recipes for the novice and veteran brewer.
For your first batch, everything you need (including ingredients) can be had for about 175 bucks, and while that may sound steep at first, just wait until we do some math:
According to Jason, the average five-gallon batch of beer costs about $40 to brew and will yield about 50 bottles of beer. The average six-pack of craft beer costs upwards of eight dollars, so you are saving about 25 bucks each time you brew (and if you drink fancy Belgian beer like me, you can save hundreds by brewing your own).
Once you have your equipment and ingredients it really is as easy as making soup. You simply add some stuff to a boiling kettle and, after an hour, you cool it down. Next, you transfer the contents of your kettle into a bucket, add yeast and in about a month you are enjoying a bottle of your own beer. Simple, right?
Of course, if you find that you really love brewing, you can easily spend six grand on a stainless, automated all-grain system, but then that’s the beauty of beer; whether it was brewed in a multi-million dollar brewhouse or on a kitchen stove, it’s still beer and beer is delicious.
Once you’ve brewed several batches of your own you can impress your friends by using words like flocculate, attenuation and diacetyl. They will marvel at your ever-increasing beer knowledge as you progress into a 16th level beer nerd, so get yourself a paper towel, pull a chair up next to that fermentor and watch those yeast reproduce.
If you’re interested in homebrewing, I highly recommend stopping into Mash and seeing what it’s all about. There is beer to be brewed!
Mash, 2714 North 21st Street