Equipment Glossary Acknowledgements

Site Map
Section 1
Brewing Your First Beer With Malt Extract
1 A Crash Course in Brewing
2 Brewing Preparations
3 Malt Extract and Beer Kits
4 Water for Extract Brewing
5 Hops
6 Yeast
7 Boiling and Cooling
8 Fermentation
9 Fermenting Your First Beer
10 What is Different for Brewing Lager Beer?
11 Priming and Bottling
Section 2
Brewing Your First Extract and Specialty Grain Beer
Section 3
Brewing Your First All-Grain Beer
Section 4
Formulating Recipes and Solutions


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Section 1 - Brewing Your First Beer With Malt Extract

Welcome to How To Brew! In this first section of the book, we are going to lay the groundwork for the rest of your brewing education. As with every new skill, it helps to learn to do things the right way the first time, rather than learning via short cuts that you will have to unlearn later on. On the other hand, when you learn how to drive, it is not necessary to learn how an internal combustion engine works. You just need to know that it does work when you keep it supplied with air and gasoline for fuel, oil for lubrication, and water for cooling.

To learn to brew beer, you don't need to learn how the yeast metabolize the malt sugars. But, you need to understand that metabolizing is what they do, and you need to understand what they need from you to get the job done. Once you understand that, you can do your part, they can do theirs, and the job should turn out right. Once you gain some familiarity with the brewing processes, you can delve deeper into the inner workings and make your beer better.

So, in Brewing Your First Beer With Extract, you will learn to drive. Chapter 1 - A Crash Course in Brewing, will provide an overview of the entire process for producing a beer. Chapter 2 - Brewing Preparations, explains why good preparation, including sanitation, is important, and how to go about it. Chapter 3 - Malt Extract and Beer Kits, examines the key ingredient of do-it-yourself beer and how to use it properly. Chapter 4 - Water For Extract Brewing, cuts to the chase with a few do's and don'ts about a very complex subject. Chapter 5 - Hops, covers the different kinds of hops, why to use them, how to use them, and how to measure them for consistency in your brewing. The last ingredient chapter in Section 1, Chapter 6 - Yeast, explains what yeast are, how to prepare them, and what they need to grow.

From there, Section 1 moves into the physical processes of brewing. Chapter 7 - Boiling and Cooling, walks you thru a typical brew day: mixing the wort, boiling it, and cooling it to prepare it for fermentation. Chapter 8 - Fermentation, examines how the yeast ferments wort into beer so you will understand what you are trying to do, without going into excruciating detail. Chapter 9 - Fermenting Your First Beer, does just what it says: takes what you have just learned and walks you through the practical application.

Everybody wants to brew their favorite beer that they buy at the store, and it is usually a lager. So, Chapter 10 - What is Different for Brewing Lager Beer? examines the key differences of lager brewing, building on what you have already learned about ale brewing. Section 1 finishes with Chapter 11 - Priming and Bottling, explaining each step of how to package your five gallons of new beer into something you can really use.

It is a long section, but you will learn to brew, and brew right the first time. Later sections of the book will delve deeper into malt and malted barley so you can take more control over the ingredients, and thus, your beer. The last section, Section 4 - Recipes, Experimentation, and Troubleshooting, will give you the roadmaps, the tools, and the repair manual you need to drive this hobby to new horizons. Have Fun!

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Appendix A - Using Hydrometers
Appendix B - Brewing Metallurgy
Appendix C - Chillers
Appendix D - Building a Mash/Lauter Tun
Appendix E - Metric Conversions
Appendix F - Recommended Reading

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All material copyright 1999, John Palmer