Around 5 weeks ago, I embarked on a home brew project – brewing my own beer because it was something that interested me but also, because potentially, I could save money by not buying alcohol in my weekly shop!
I had all the equipment I needed but a couple of weeks ago, ended up buying a bottle drainer (£20) as I needed to wash, sterilise and dry all my bottles easily before I bottled the beer.
Bottles drying on the drainer
So, from my initial batch of beer, I was able to bottle 43 bottles (500ml). Cost now works out @ £1.80 per pint or around £1.60 per bottle, still not a bad price.
Tasting the Brew!
My beer has been bottled for over 20 days and I thought it was time that I cracked one open to try.
My Own Brew!
All in all, I was pleasantly surprised – the beer was quite clear, with only a tiny amount of yeast sediment at the bottom (barely noticeable) and was easily drinkable! Whilst the beer kit that I used was a lager kit (Coopers Australian Lager), my beer tasted rather more bitter than a lager and had an ale kind of golden/amber hue to it. Alcohol-wise, I don’t think it’s that strong, less than 4% ABV.
I’m really pleased with the initial results and have heard that brews get better the longer you leave them so I’ve got something to look forward to over the coming weeks/months!
Home Brew Lessons To Take Away
I’m glad that rather than just go off the instructions in the box, I decided to do my own research and sought out home brew forums and websites to find out what was what.
All you parents out there will recall how your newborn baby’s bottles etc were meticulously sterilised? In home brewing, the brew is the ‘baby’, so anything that touches the brew needs to be sterilised first to get rid of any potential nasties. The worse thing you can do is to spoil your batch just because you were too lazy to sterilise properly.
A lot of patience is required – I didn’t quite realise how long it would take for a homebrew to be at its “best”. Whilst the instructions on the beer kits talk in terms of your beer being ‘ready’ in 2 weeks, those “in the know” recommended at least a month, although I was really tempted to try before then!
Finally, there are tons of YouTube videos on ‘how to’ homebrew – watching these gave me confidence that I was doing things the right way!
So, I’ve learned a new ‘skill’ this year and embarked on a new hobby. Am looking forward to making my next brew!