Making beer from a kit is a straightforward two step process starting with preparation and fermentation, then bottling (or kegging) and conditioning.
What equipment will I need ...
- 25 L fermentation bucket with a seal-able lid, grommet and airlock
- LCD Thermometer to check the fermentation temperature (18-25C)
- Stirrer for mixing
- Steriliser powder
- Syphon for transferring the beer into bottles or a pressure barrel
- Hydrometer to check fermentation has completed correctly
You will then need to choose a beer kit. (We recommend starting with one from the Woodforde range as they're very easy to make and quick to condition, plus they do make very good beer)
The Beginners Micro Brewery Start-Up Kit contains all the equipment above. You still need to choose a beer ingredient kit and will need bottles or barrel for storage.
Follow these simple step by step instructions
Wild yeasts and bacteria can affect the taste and flavour of your beer so to avoid any problems you'll need to sterilise all the equipment that will come in contact with your beer. Mix 1 teaspoon of sterilising powder with roughly 2 L of warm water and add to the fermenter. Fit the airlock and grommet into the lid and attach. Shake the fermenter a couple of times over a 5-10 minute period to ensure good coverage. Rinse out a couple of times with cold tap water.
- Let's say we're making the Woodforde's Wherry kit. First remove the small packet of yeast from the beer kit and put aside, then stand the two cans in hot water for 10-15 minutes to soften the malt extract.
- Pour approx 2 L of boiling water into the fermenter. Then pour the contents of the two beer extract cans into the fermenter and stir well. Use an empty can to transfer enough hot and cold water to make up to 23L at between 18-25C.
- Sprinkle the yeast sachet on top of the mixture and just leave or if you like you can gently stir it in.
- Attach the lid and half fill the airlock with water (preferable pre boiled).
- Sit the fermenter somewhere safe at between 20-25C for 10 days to complete the process. The fermentation is complete when the airlock stops bubbling though it's advisable to leave it for the full 7 days.
- Test the specific gravity of your beer by opening your fermenter and using the hydrometer tube removing a small sample and testing it by by placing the hydrometer in it. If it has reached the required reading then it's time to bottle or keg your beer. See (How to Use a Hydrometer)
Note: While this explains how most kits are made it does pay to follow the instructions included with the beer kit you purchase.
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