How to make a stir plate for homebrewing






Republished here with permission from the American Homebrewers Association While there are multiple ways to grow yeast in a starter, one of the most effective is to use a stir plate. Stir plates utilize magnetic attraction to create a vortex inside a container of wort, keeping the yeast in suspension and providing oxygen—which are both … [ Read more]




Homebrew Recipe: Solar Wave Golden IPA






In our DIY Issue, Michael Dawson breaks down the basic steps of reverse engineering your favorite beer. This recipe appeared alongside that article. In the spirit of scaling down production beers for the homebrew system, here’s a recipe from our friends at Chop & Brew. Solar Wave Golden IPA is a beer developed in collaboration … [ Read more]




We Can Rebuild It: How to reverse-engineer a beer






Bad Weather head brewer Andy Ruhland. A reverse-engineered version of Bad Weather’s Solar Wave Golden IPA is this month’s Homebrew Recipe // Photo by Lucy Hawthorne Pablo Picasso once said “To copy others is necessary,” and who are we to argue with a cubist? Since contemporary craft and world classic beers are a source of … [ Read more]




How To Make Wild Minnesota Pear Cider Vinegar






Fruit vinegar is easy to make, and almost any fruit can be used to make vinegar with varying levels of intensity. I have made pear, apple, and plum vinegars using wild fruit from the bluffs of southeast Minnesota. There are many resources to make great fermented products at home; “Wild Fermentation” by Sandor Katz is a … [ Read more]




Homebrew Recipe: Brockengespenst Alt






“They traveled in a motor-diligence out toward the Brocken. The brushland grew hilly and witchlike, clouds came from directions indeterminate and covered the sun. ‘An older sort of Germany,’ commented Günther, with a less-than-reassuring smile. ‘Deeper.’” —Thomas Pynchon, “Against the Day” Alt is a relic of a bygone era when Saxons hallucinated witches and devils … [ Read more]




Homebrew Recipe: International India Black Lager






Attempting to mansplain the stylistic DNA and categorical waypoints of this month’s homebrew project will look to some (many?) like an exercise in cerevisiphilic insufferability: it’s a black version of a pale hoppy ale that was based on a misunderstood concept of what 19th century export beers were like, but which today bear even less resemblance … [ Read more]




Homebrew Recipe: Backthrow Pre-Pro Triple Grain Amber Lager






This month, by making use of some regionally grown grains (barley, corn, and rye—save that wheat for bread flour, yo!) we’re going to brew a Minnesota-rooted beer that, when seen through the lens of a modern BJCP beer nerd, would be pigeonholed as an International Amber Lager: “A well-attenuated malty amber lager with an interesting … [ Read more]




Homebrew Recipe: New Englandish Bitter






I hate to call this a session IPA but if you had to you could. It’s a sub-five percent ABV glucan-rich, non-“C” hop juice bomb, but it’s really got the soul (or at any rate, the malt, yeast, and ABV percentage) of a lovely imperial pint–sloshing bitter. Here’s the plan: flavorful pale ale malt base … [ Read more]




Homebrew Recipe: Auld Alliance Peated Bière de Garde






True story: in France, more Scotch whisky is sold in one month than Cognac is sold in a year. And while Singaporeans drink more Scotch per capita, and the U.S. imports more in terms of monetary value, by sheer volume the French are the number one buyers of Scotch (almost 180 million bottles in 2014, … [ Read more]




Homebrew Recipe: 1997 IPA






<old man rant> Some of us here can remember a time when craft beer (back then we called it “microbrew”) wasn’t so complicated. It wasn’t so fraught with issues of identity, craft versus “crafty,” or the minefields of ownership and majority stakes. There were no paralyzing choices created by an entire wall of palate-erasing next-thing … [ Read more]




Homebrew Recipe: Wyld Cyder






There was an apocryphal bad frost centuries ago in Hessen, Germany that wiped out that year’s grape crop. The distraught winemakers turned to apples and they haven’t looked back since. That region is now the heartland of Apfelmost—a hard cider, fermented with the naturally occurring microbes on the fruit and extant from year to year … [ Read more]




Homebrew Recipe: Minnesota Weisse






This month, citizens, we’re going to revisit our kettle-souring regimen for a beer inspired by Florida weisse—a riff on Berliner weisse that nontraditionally incorporates fruit (specifically local/tropical types like guava, passionfruit, and dragon fruit) right in the fermentation, rather than added as a syrup in the glass when served. Making use of our local malts, … [ Read more]




Homebrew Recipe: Ras Neckbeard Tropical Stout






When we 21st century beer folks think of summertime seasonals, we most likely envision something yellow and light-ish—Berliner weisse, pils, a wheat beer. But 19th century English brewers exporting their ales to the small latitudes didn’t necessarily think the same way. We’ve explored historical IPA in this column before, but the brewers supplying the far-flung … [ Read more]




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Homebrew Recipe: Velvet Unterbahn Kettle-Soured Gose






This month: a traditional Gose produced with a modern souring regimen. Since long preambles are for single-strain fermentations, let’s dig right in. A recipe to try Velvet Unterbahn Gose Target OG: 1.048, Target IBU: ~7 Grain 4 pounds Weyermann® Pilsner 4 pounds Weyermann® Pale Wheat 8 ounces Weyermann® Acidulated malt Hops ½ ounce your choice … [ Read more]




How yeast works: A layperson’s guide to saccharomyces






Barley, wheat, rye, hop cones, and hop pellets all have immediately tangible, readily identifiable qualities. You can inspect a jar of these raw materials on a brewery tour and instantly get a good idea of what and how they contribute to your beer. Yeast, on the other hand, is mysterious and intangible. While the brewer … [ Read more]




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