Tuesday, November 28, 2006


Shown here is the basic starter kit which has all you need to brew your first 23 litre batch of beer.

For around the $ 150 mark we got a 30 ltr fermenter including a digital thermometor and liquid level indicator, a fully submersible heater, hydrometer (for measuring alcohol content) & flask, stirrer, brewer's sugar, bottle sanitiser and brush, 100 crown seals, sugar scoop (1/2 and full teaspoon ), bottle filler and a free standing bench capper. Included was a premium beer kit of our choice. We added the 2 ltr jug and a kilo of dry malt extract for an extra $ 10.

Finding the right spot to site your fermenter is the most difficult and important consideration. You need to be able to access it easily - particularly early on, as you will be checking on the little fella every hour, on the hour ! Take into account that for steady, reliable fermentation with an ale ( or top fermenting yeast ) you will need to maintain a temperature below 30 c. With the heater, you wont need to worry about the temp. dropping to dangerously low levels.

Also to consider is the day to day operation of your household and family - they may have difficulty sharing your enthusiasm and accepting that the family room is now the world centre for new beer discoveries and the future home to gold medals and commendations at the beer awards.

So find a spot that can be temperature controlled and accessible, that is out of the reach of children and the demented, and that is raised high enough so that the hydrometer flask can be filled easily. If the spot is also easily seen as a kind of centrepiece to all who visit your humble abode, then, BRAVO - all the better, I say. Shown above is a little used corner of a lounge room - no more than a coffee table area - and little used because there is now a 30ltr fermenter on a coffee table there.

This is pretty much all you will need to get brewing without destroying home and/or marriage, I think ( see future posts for updates ). A little knowledge, which can be found in books or, better still, from a home brew supply shop is essential and will see you on your way to your first brew.

You don't need to be a scientist or chemical engineer - though I know of a few of these who have come up with some pretty fine beers, both homebrew and commercial - just pay strict attention to sanitation and cleanliness and don't panic. I think. This, and a little luck and you should be able to brew something that is ...
" FAB'LUSSS !!! "

1 comment:

Fiona said...

This ale looks like potent stuff - even before anyone's tasted it. My husband has been seen in the kitchen with a bottle brush, painstakingly cleaning his empties in preparation for bottling. Yep - I said 'painstakingly'. He even used hot water. This brew is shaping up to have miraculous qualities!