Tag Archives: brew

The Best Books for Home Brewing Sour and Wild Ales

2 Dec

the bruery oude tart barrels

So you’ve gotten through the invaluable essentials such as The Joy of Home Brewing and have Designing Great Beers as your well-worn reference and you’re asking, “Gee, beer is really delicious, fun to make too!  I wonder how I can expand my expertise in the craft.”  What better way than by trying your hand at brewing a new and increasingly popular style?  Simply consult the list below for everything you need to get started harnessing wild yeast and to brew your very own sour ales.

Brew it old school

Before the human race knew of the existence of yeast, people believed fermentation was a gracious act of God, bestowed upon beer and wine as a small gift to help us forget how awful things have been since Eve at that apple.  Brewers would leave their fermentation tanks open which would allow whatever wild yeast was floating around to enter the wort.  This would yield inconsistent results from beer to beer, but what the hell, it’s alcohol right?  Well nowadays, brewers are again allowing wild yeast into their beer with the intention of creating something similar to what our ancestors enjoyed thousands of years ago.  If you’re considering experimenting with wild yeasts to create your own sour beers, these reads will teach you how to infect your beer with only the bacteria you want.

Brew Like a Monk

monk1

 

“Make a distinctive beer that is expressive rather than imitative, and dedicate yourself to it as if there is nothing else in life.”

Not for the beginning homebrewer, Brew Like a Monk describes just what exactly those solitary brewers of God were up to in their monasteries, explaining the processes used by monks in Europe for hundreds of years.  The book also compares traditional Belgian brew traditions with their modern American replicas.

 

 

 

 

 

American Sour Beers

American Sour Beers

 

American Sour Ales goes through the techniques and processes used by the most prominent American Sour brewers style by style.  It documents the techniques that have brought success to many commercial sour brewers and is the truly comprehensive guide to home brewing sours, there’s even a chapter on cooking and pairing food with sour ales.  Pucker up.

 

 

 

 

 

Wild Brews

wild-brews

 

Wild Brews features a lot of information regarding the history of wild fermentation, namely in Belgium by sequestered monks.  There are 10 recipes contained within but due to the unpredictability of wild yeasts, a home brewer is likely to find it very difficult to duplicate a specific beer.  Still, this book is a good option for someone interested in learning how to harness the delicious power of wild yeast.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

The Top 10 Books about Beer and Brewing

18 Jan

Here’s a much more definitive top-10 list of the best books about beer and brewing.

1. How to Brew: Everything You Need To Know To Brew Beer Right The First Time 

 how to brew beer best books

 A quintessential book that should be in the library of any homebrewer from novice to expert.  How to Brew is as easy to read as it is informative and will no doubt leave you with everything you need to know to brew any style of beer in any way.

[…]

IPA Day 2012

1 Aug

ipa-day-#ipaday logo

Unite craft beer drinkers! For Thursday August 2 is the second annual IPA Day.  Not that any of us need an excuse to drink an India Pale Ale, but this young national holiday is gaining popularity and is a great time to look for special events at your local brewery or bottle shop.  To see what’s going on near you, head over to the Craft Beer Calendar.  You can also add an event that you’re hosting to their site for extra exposure.  Here’s the official word from the IPADay website:

IPA Day is not the brainchild of a corporate marketing machine, nor is it meant to serve any particular beer brand. IPA Day is [an] opportunity for all breweries, bloggers, businesses and consumers to connect and share their love of craft beer. It is an opportunity for the entire craft beer culture to combine forces and advocate craft beer through increased education and global awareness.

Getting involved is easy; the only requirements are an appreciation for great beer and the will to spread the word. Anyone can participate by enjoying IPA with friends, making some noise online with the #IPADay hashtag, and showing the world that craft beer is more than a trend.

Prost!

Beer Here

25 May

new-york-historical-society-beer-here-exhibit

 

It’s no secret that beer has played a large role in the history of the United States, from causing social unrest during prohibition to the recent boon of new craft breweries opening EVERYwhere.  Experience a piece of that history with Beer Here, a new exhibit at the New York Historical Society that showcases the history of beer in New York and how it helped shaped the state into what it is today.  And that’s not even the best part; the exhibit concludes with a beer hall that features a selection of favorite New York City and State artisanal beers.  May 25 – September 2.

 

2,000 Craft Breweries Now Operating in the US

24 May

craft brewery

The Brewers Association has announced that the official number of craft breweries in the United States has reached 2,000; a number that shows the significant growth of the industry which saw 1,500 operating breweries a mere 4 years ago in 2008.  As reported earlier, the Brewers Association is expecting the explosion of new breweries to continue throughout the rest of the year, predicting 600-700 new beer makers to open their doors in 2012.  The numbers so far seem to be short of their optimistic expectations but the trend is certainly going the right direction and the craft beer industry is at its strongest with no letup in sight.

Here’s the link to the official Brewers Association announcement

Saint Arnold Homefront IPA

23 May

saint arnold homefront ipa

Memorial Day weekend will bring us a great opportunity to commemorate our servicemen in the best way possible, by drinking beer.  Saint Arnold Brewing Company is releasing Homefront IPA, a limited brew that will see 100% of its profits going to Operation Homefront, an organization that provides emergency financial and other assistance to the families of our service members and wounded warriors.  The brewery has set a goal to raise $100,000 with the IPA.

With your help, we believe this is possible. Your support will take the form of purchasing and drinking this beer. There is only one batch, so when it’s gone, it’s gone. (Of course, feel free to enjoy one of our other beers from which we get to keep the profits after that!)  -Saint Arnold Brewing press release

Described as a drinkable West Coast IPA featuring a light body and notes of citrus, Homefront IPA is only available in 22oz bombers in select stores.

Tasmanian Beer Shampoo

20 Mar

tasmanian beer shampoo

Let’s face it, beer smells good; and if you just can’t get enough of that great hoppy aroma, why not lather it into your hair?  Tasmanian Beer Shampoo ($11.50) allows you to do that without bringing a bottle of craft brew into the shower with you.  Brewed by the boutique Tasmanian Dark Isle Brewery. Prized Tasmanian hops straight from the oats houses of the lush Derwent River Valley are infused, then added for their conditioning and antiseptic qualities. You can  actually see the flecks of hops in the bar.  It’s also good for your hair as beer has been famed for generations for its ability to leave hair bouncy, shiny and full of body.

Sonoran Brewing 7 Wives Saison

7 Mar

7 wives saison

Collaboration brews are gaining some serious popularity as of late, and what is typically a partnership between breweries has naturally evolved into one brewery’s inclusion of a renowned chef to help bring together new ingredients to form a unique Saison.  7 Wives Saison from Sonoran Brewing Company is the first beer in an exciting seasonal series that features local ingredients from Arizona and is brewed with the help and creativity of a distinguished chef.  7 Wives was brewed with input from Jeremy Pacheco, chef at Lon’s at the Hermosa, and includes wheat from Pacheco’s father’s Marana farm, fennel from his garden and McClendon’s Select Organic Farm in Peoria, mesquite syrup from Cotton Country Jams in Phoenix, and fresh pink peppercorns from Singh Farms in Scottsdale.  Saison is a style that should lend itself well to these earthy and peppery additions, especially with an accomplished chef giving the final word on how it should taste.  Look for the collaborated brew where Sonoran beer is sold (Arizona).

Dogfish Head Positive Contact

5 Mar

dogfish head positive contact deltron

The collaboration brew is nothing new to the craft beer industry.  Brewers will often share ideas and ingredients with one another to create something new and typically experimental, but Dogfish Head is trying a new type of collaboration beer by teaming up with none other than hip-hop artist Dan the Automator from Deltron 3030.  Positive Contact is the new creation that will be a beer/cider mix, featuring some of Dan’s favorite ingredients: Fuji Apples, Cayenne Peppers, roasted Farro, and Cilantro.

[…]

The Brew Exchange

20 Feb

the brew exchange logo

Craft beer bars seem to be popping up on every corner in cities like New York, Seattle, Houston and anywhere else with a decent beer community.  Therefore, it shouldn’t come as a huge surprise to see some bars with unique twists to draw customers (though, craft beer should be enough of a draw in itself).

One such example is The Brew Exchange in Austin, TX which opened its doors on February 16 with a pricing format that’s one of a kind.  The 72 beers on tap are all subject to The Brew Exchange’s pricing software that causes each beer to fluctuate somewhere between deeply discounted special offers and the typical six dollar pint.  The prices all move up and down throughout the day, allowing customers to get a premium pint for as little as $2 if the “market conditions” are favorable.  The dynamic prices also allow for certain brews to go on sale all day, simulating a market crash.  Each beer is dependent on the prices of the other beers though, so for example, if a Stone Pale Ale sees a 25% price drop, then the beers that are in that same category will rise by 25%.

[…]