The Local Food Report: homebrewing, part 3

My final piece on homebrewing with Gui and Dennis airs today. First we talked history, then ingredients, and finally today, they walked me through the process. If you're interested in how water, malt, hops, and yeast come together to make a bottle of beer, I highly recommend giving it a listen. 

I know a lot more about beer now than before our conversations, and hopefully you do too. The most rewarding thing about this is that it's made beer drinking a lot more fun. Ok...or maybe a lot more interesting. It's always been fun, but now when I see a 90-Minute IPA or a Continuously Hopped IPA, I can give some serious thought to what to expect.

At the end of this week's piece, Gui lets me and Dennis taste his latest IPA. It's a beer he made from a so-called "clone kit" with the intentions of reproducing one of his favorite beers, Stone IPA. He made quite a few changes, and it was delicious.

He generously agreed to share are his notes. We're having a little trouble locating them, but they should be up here by the end of the day. (Update, 3.15: They're here! Phew.)

In the meantime, Dennis made an experimental Pale Ale that he thought turned out pretty well, and he shared his notes with me. Here's a little more on that in his words, and his notes:

Last night I opened the first of an experimental Pale Ale I brewed just before the interview. It was a little young, but drinkable. 

I almost always use brewersfriend.com to develop recipes. This Pale Ale was based on an idea from Gordon Strong's book "Brewing Better Beer." FHW refers to First Wort Hops. The hops are put in the boil kettle while the grains are being lautered. I made two small batches of this a few days apart. The brews were identical except for the yeast. 

If this makes you want to get into brewing, or if you're already into it, check out this list of resources. Happy homebrewing, and happy tasting.

Dennis's List of Homebrewing Resources:


How to Brew by John Palmer
The Complete Joy of Homebrewing by Charlie Papazian
Brewing Better Beer by Gordon Strong
Farmhouse Ales by Phil Markowski
The Homebrewer's Garden by Joe and Dennis Fisher


Brew Your Own magazine (bimonthly)
Yankee Brew News (free, monthly, and available amongst other places at Wellfleet Spirits)


Dennis says that brewing involves many calculations, and recommends these websites.

iBrewmaster (Dennis says "indispensable")


Chris said...

Cool series Elspeth - I live in Harwich and am looking for more people that homebrew here on the Cape - I also have a blog that has a homebrew side to it - http://www.thetablelands.com - there is also CCLAMS homebrew club up in Hyannis. I also sent you an email.

Robin said...

I visited my friend’s home recently and came to know unknown facts about homebrewing from his grandfather, who gifted home-made beer as a mark of love and affection. It inspired me to learn more about the techniques of making craft beer so that may pass on this legacy to my younger siblings.

Elspeth said...

Hi Robin,

I love this idea. We brewed beer with my dad a few falls ago, then drank it all together on Christmas! It was a great experience.


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