Having the time and confidence to brew your own beer at home is great, although first you will need to stock up on the all important brewing supplies. There are many possibilities on the market, and if you don't know which kit is right for you, you could be in a lot off trouble on brewing day!
The first thing that you need to know is how much beer do you actually want to produce? If you want to make around five gallons of beer then your brewing kit must be able to yield this amount. There are brewing kits that would give you this and there are those that won't. Thus, when purchasing home brew supplies, make sure that you read the details attached to the items. It is also advisable for you to ask someone who works at the shop to help you if you need clarifications regarding home brewing products.
Some equipment that you will require include a fermentation bucket, bottling bucket, plastic hose, airlock, brewing kettle, airlock, and other relevant items for both brew day and bottling day. Just remember that these items need to be used for brewing alone... this means that you should not use your brewing kettle to make spaghetti Bolognese the night after you brew your beer, as doing so will contaminate your equipment and spoil your beer when you try to brew a new batch in the future.
Extra supplies that you might need include a siphon to transfer your beer to the bottling bucket, and then into the bottles. For bottling, you will also need bottle caps and a sturdy capper to properly seal your bottles.
Grains, malt extracts and yeast are also essential because they are basically the source of your beer. How would you produce beer without them? Similarly, if you want to add flavor to your home brew beer you need to put in flavorings and spices such as licorice stick, spruce essence and dried ginger root. Aside from these, hops such as Cascade Leaf Hops can also be used to add taste to your home made beer.
To control the temperature of your beer and therefore improve its quality and consistency, you need a thermometer that gives an accurate measurement. In addition, you should include a hydrometer in your list of beer making must-haves because this instrument keeps track of the beer wort's density rather than water density. By doing so, the hydrometer is able to determine if the beer is fermented enough for bottling.
Then most importantly, the proper cleansers and sanitizes to clean all of your equipment before you use it. Even the slightest microbe to infect your beer will result in a bung batch... so be thorough and follow the instruction.
In sum, brewing your own beer can be a whole lot of fun... but before you can engage in it you must know the 101 on home brew supplies.
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