Writer: Chris Colby

Calculating IBUs

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In alcoholic beverages, maltiness is usually balanced by another flavor. In wine (and some styles of beer), maltiness is balanced by acidity. In most styles of beer, maltiness is balanced by the bitterness of the hops. The level of bitterness in beer can be expressed as International Bitterness Units (IBUs). IBUs can be calculated using


Buying & Storing Hops

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There are many different varieties of hops available to the homebrewer. In addition, these hops come in a few different forms. Different forms of hops vary with regards to their storage potential and performance in the brewhouse. Whole Hops Whole hops are simply hop cones that have been picked and dried. Some European hops may


Calibration and Conclusion

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Homebrewers have a variety of tools at their disposal — including hydrometers, thermometers and pH meters — to measure important variables during the brew day. It is important that these be calibrated, so that you can have some confidence in your measurements. Fortunately, calibration is not very difficult. Here’s how: One theme running through this collection


Post Fermentation and Packaging

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After fermentation, the beer needs to be packaged into bottles or kegs. The beer must also be carbonated to the correct level. For the best results, the beer should be exposed to as little oxygen as possible during the transfer and subsequent storage. Minimizing oxygen uptake by the finished beer will prolong its shelf life.


Fermenting and Conditioning

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Running a healthy fermentation depends on pitching an appropriate amount of healthy yeast. Beyond that, creating proper wort conditions (with respect to aeration and nutrition) and controlling your fermentation temperatures are the keys to success. How you treat your yeast is a huge factor in determining beer quality. In this stage of brewing, the brewer


Wort Production (with malted grains)

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Making wort from malted grains gives the brewer the freedom to control the attributes of his or her wort, most notably, its fermentability. You have many options on an all-grain brew day. Some of the options depend on how your brewery is configured, while others allow you to make decisions that impact beer quality. In


Wort Production (with malt extract)

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Wort made from reconstituted malt extract is dissimilar from wort made from mashing malted grains. Knowing the differences can guide you to making sound decisions regarding how to use it on brew day. The convenience of malt extract does not have to come at the price of beer quality if you know how to handle


“The Bellhop” (Raspberry Porter)

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A middle-of-the-road porter, with raspberries. The flavor and aroma of porter dominate this brew, but both are rounded out with raspberry notes. A fruit beer that even a guy can enjoy, but one that also says, “Hey Ladies!”


Fourth Quarter Porter

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A more highly-attenuated, less caramel-sweet version of a brown porter. A firm, but not overpowering, roast character takes center stage on this balanced, drinkable ale. A brown porter with the session beer sensibilities of a dark mild or dry stout. Invite a few buddies over — even the ones who “don’t like dark beers” — and this keg of porter will kick by the fourth quarter.


Paranthropus Porter

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A robust porter with a nice balance between the sharp bite of black patent malt and hop bitterness. Chocolate notes mingle with English hops in the nose. This won first place in the dark beer category of the Austin ZEALOTS 2004 Homebrew Inquisition. Do not skip making the yeast starter as the beer will not attenuate properly without it.


The Texas Two-Step Extract Method

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Extract brewers can take inspiration from some commercial brewers and improve their brewing methods. The Texas Two-Step lets extract brewers sidestep some common procedural problems. Plus: an all-grain adaption.


Brauerei Aying Ayinger Celebrator clone

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This massively malty Bavarian dopplebock is darker than Salvator and shows a distinct chocolate malt character.


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