Home Brewing, Winemaking and Tea
Find out the basics of Home brewing and Winemaking and the varieties of Tea available for your enjoyment through our Guide and Product Information listed above.
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Information provided here is meant
to be a basic guide to home fermentation, both in brewing beer
and in wine making. There are several similarities between the
two. Some of the equipment you purchase can be used for both
applications. The process for converting sugar to alcohol is the
same for beer and wine. Therefore the basic technique you use is
transferable. Home fermentation is meant to be a hobby and
pursued as such, so be creative and have fun.
HOMEBREW - Basically homebrewing (fermentation) has been going on since the beginning of time. It is a simple process of mixing water, grains, yeast and at some point, an alcohol type liquid can be extracted. Since berries and grains were early man’s diet, most likely someone let the rain get to the grain or berries stored for the winter and guess what they had come spring? We have refined the procedure a little since then and now follow these basic steps. Barley is sprouted and then roasted under certain conditions to convert the starch portion of the grain to sugar. The grain is cracked or milled coarsely and hot water (approximately 152°F) is added or steeped over the top to produce a sweet liquid called wort. The extraction of this wort is called mashing. This wort is simply unfermented beer. The wort is then boiled to convert protein and unfermentable sugar to fermentable sugars and also to clarify the beer and keep it from turning cloudy or having off flavors. During this boiling process, hops are added at different times to produce bittering or aromatic enhancement. Keep in mind, this is a short version of beer making and as you advance, so will your quest for additional information.
CLEANING AND STERILIZATION - First you must clean and sterilize. It is absolutely necessary to set enough time aside to clean up after every phase of home fermentation. Not only will this save you money and time in the long run, but it will probably keep the people in your immediate surrounding happier as well. Cleaning and sterilization, in beer making (or winemaking), is the key to good beer (wine). With the use of cleanser and sterilizer, etc., you will eliminate the possibility of spoilage. Beer making, and the process of, are a perfect environment for bacterial growth and the spread of infections, which cause off flavor and molding of the brew. Bacteria is spread two ways, either through the air or by transfer meaning liquid movement (touch), so thoroughly wash, clean and sterilize every kettle, fermenter, bottles, syphon system, etc. you use.
Visit our website and store for home brewing and winemaking product information and homebrew and wine making supplies. All beer kits available from our website or catalog require less than an hour to make (Our Home Brewing Equipment Kit works great with these “one hour” kits) with the exception of Barkingbier Ingredient Kits-Great tasting kits you can brew in your kitchen. The following is a list of items you may need to brew a batch of our very own popular Barkingbier kits: Stainless Steel or Enamel Pot (min. 3 & 4 gal. capacity unless otherwise specified), 6" - 10" Mesh Strainer, Rubber Spatula, 8"-12" Funnel (if fermenting in carboy), min. 6 gallons capacity Fermenter, Airlock, Syphon Kit, Hydrometer, Thermometer, Bottle Brush, Cleanser/Sterilizer, 5 gallon Bottling Bucket or Fermenter, 48-53 Beer Bottles, Crown Caps and Bottle Capper.