We all know that college kids love their beer. The six packs of Natty Light filling up our fridges don’t lie. But sometimes we’re looking for a little upgrade in our drink of choice.
From the best beer cocktails to a girl’s guide on craft beer, the Lala’s got you covered. Now, we’re taking our knowledge on the beverage a step further by providing you with all of the info to make it yourself. Welcome to home-brewing.
For increased accuracy on the topic, we’ve enlisted the help of Chef Owens from the Southern New Hampshire University Culinary Department and instructional videos from Brooklyn Brew Shop.
First things first, gather your ingredients and supplies.
Ingredients: clean water, grains, sweetener (sugar), hops (flavoring agents) and yeast
Supplies: a pot, strainer, stove, and an airtight clean container such as a 1-gallon bottle with an airlock. Pro-tip: a home-brew kit might simplify the process.
The mash: Prepare grains by cooking them in hot water (about 160⁰F – 170⁰F) to activate the sugars and starches. You’ll want about 1 quart of water per pound of grain. It’s kind of like you’re making oatmeal. Stir every 15 minutes for one hour.
Pour the grains into a strainer over a pot. Heat 1 gallon of water to pour over the grain and add sugar. The amount depends on how much and what type of beer you’re making.
Bring this mixture, also known as the wort, up to a boil (212⁰F) for at least 45 mins. Then add the hops, which will give the beer flavor. Add bittering hops near the beginning and aroma hops near the end. Lower the heat for a gentle boil. In the meantime, you’ll want to sanitize your gallon.
Cool the wort down, below 70⁰F. Add yeast to the airtight bottle, also known as pitching, and shake to dissolve. This allows CO2 to escape. Let it sit for 2 weeks in a cool dark space like your basement to ferment. Then you’re ready to bottle.
While these are just the basics, brooklynbrewshop.com is a good source for detailed instructions. They’ll help you prepare from unpacking your kit to bottling your beer. Happy brewing!