Spike Brewing 12.5 Conical Fermenter Giveaway!

Home Brew Forums > Home Brewing Beer > General Beer Discussion > Why do you homebrew...general thoughts on the process.

Reply
 
LinkBack Thread Tools
Old 01-07-2011, 08:12 PM   #1
Crucial-BBQ
Feedback Score: 0 reviews
Recipes 
 
Join Date: Mar 2009
Location: Between Baltimore and DC., Maryland
Posts: 71
Liked 8 Times on 7 Posts
Likes Given: 11

Default Why do you homebrew...general thoughts on the process.

I assumed this was already a thread; perhaps numerous times over. A quick search revealed nothing, however, so excuse me if it has already been done.

I began homebrewing in my mid-20s. I was a huge fan of beer at the time (still am ), but primarily got into the hobby because of the notion that brewing your own was cheaper than buying from an LQ. I soon realized that it was thoroughly enjoyable to cook up my own beer, and as you all know, a darn cool hobby to have! This was in 1998. I continued to homebrew to this day, and have noticed some ways in which the scene has changed.

For one, no-one cared. No one back then cared if your IPA was a "little too dark for the style". They were just stoked that it tasted good. No one cared if you brewed a Saison or an MGD clone. They were just stoked that you were making your own beer. No one cared if you were an extract brewer. They were just stoked that you brewed your own beer. No cared if you used a 3-gallon pot and a couple of plastic buckets or if you had an elaborate, computer-controlled rig. They were just happy to enjoy the final product with you.

These days, it seems that homebrewers are more concerned with targeting a specific style of brew to a T. When I got into homebrewing, the big thing to brew was IPAs. Now, it is just big, crazy beers all around; it seems. There is nothing wrong with that, really, but in my opinion-and it is just my opinion-that the emphasis has been removed from simply homebrewing and placed on trying to duplicate an authentic style.

It also seems that the more elaborate the rig, the better. I do see pictures of some of these rigs, and they are impressive mind you, but are they really needed? Stove-top all the way!

There are also tons more people involved today than back then. This isn't a bad thing in anyway, but it seems that a lot of people who are getting in to it now are going straight to the more complicated rig set-up and "authentic" styles. It almost seems as if you are not going big, you are a poser. This seems backwards for those just getting in to it. Or are they just doing it for the cool factor?

Brewing beer is a simple process, and I do not know why so many people are complicating it. I met a guy a few years ago who has [claimed] to be homebrewing for 40 years. He scoffs at all these "new school" techniques and claims that for AG, all you need to do is soak the grains in 140˚ F water for one hour. I like to keep things simple; and that is primarily what I do. Except I use 170˚ F water. I just put the grains into a cooler or bucket and add enough hot water to cover the grains + one inch or so above. Place a lid, and let it sit (after stirring, mind you).

Perhaps I might need to use an "extra" pound of grains or so in order to get the most sugars, but this method is not only about as basic as it comes, but gives me the desired results I am looking for.

As for beer styles...for me it was all about brewing beer that I enjoy drinking. I never cared for the BJCP guidelines. If my stout is more tan than dark brown/black-big whoop-dee-do!

Lately, I have been getting into really simplifying my brews. I use one grain and one type of hop. I just believe that brewing beer should be simple. It has been documented numerous times that even the most basic equipment can be used to create complex brews. I don't mean to rant, and I'll get off my soapbox. I'm just bringing this to this forum as a general observation.

Thoughts?

__________________

Last edited by Crucial-BBQ; 01-07-2011 at 08:17 PM.
Crucial-BBQ is offline
 
Reply With Quote Quick reply to this message
Old 01-07-2011, 08:16 PM   #2
azfalcon
Feedback Score: 0 reviews
Recipes 
 
Join Date: Jan 2011
Location: Provo, Utah
Posts: 126
Default

I first tried about 10 years ago...it may have been similar to mr beer..the kit came with everything. I was just too you to care and went to bars and clubs. Fast Forward, Im a little older, wiser and more patient and enjoy beers for the flavors and history now. Got a kit for xmas and am patiently waiting as I just started it sunday

__________________

Primary - Heather Amber
Secondary - Empty
Bottled - none (first brew)
On Deck - Howlin Hefe-weizen

azfalcon is offline
 
Reply With Quote Quick reply to this message
Old 01-07-2011, 08:17 PM   #3
Laughing_Gnome_Invisible
Feedback Score: 0 reviews
Recipes 
 
Join Date: Jan 2008
Location: Norwalk, Ohio
Posts: 12,084
Liked 510 Times on 393 Posts
Likes Given: 76

Default

Thoughts? I think you are doing it wrong! 170F mash? What are you brewing?

I keep everything simple and i brew mostly session beers to my preferred style. I like to gain contemporary wisdom from this site to help me along, and that works well for me.

__________________

Steven Hawking ~ As we say in science, the England football team couldn’t hit a cow’s arse with a banjo

Laughing_Gnome_Invisible is offline
 
Reply With Quote Quick reply to this message
Old 01-07-2011, 08:28 PM   #4
Crucial-BBQ
Feedback Score: 0 reviews
Recipes 
 
Join Date: Mar 2009
Location: Between Baltimore and DC., Maryland
Posts: 71
Liked 8 Times on 7 Posts
Likes Given: 11

Default

Quote:
Originally Posted by Laughing_Gnome_Invisible View Post
Thoughts? I think you are doing it wrong! 170F mash? What are you brewing?
When I add the water to the grain, the grain cools it to around 150˚ F to 155˚ F or so. At the end of the hour, it cools to 140˚ F or a little bit higher. I mostly brew pale ales, but more hoppy.
__________________
Crucial-BBQ is offline
 
Reply With Quote Quick reply to this message
Old 01-07-2011, 08:28 PM   #5
Revvy
Post Hoc Ergo Propter Hoc
HBT_LIFETIMESUPPORTER.png
Feedback Score: 0 reviews
 
Revvy's Avatar
Recipes 
 
Join Date: Dec 2007
Location: "Detroitish" Michigan
Posts: 40,804
Liked 2724 Times on 1632 Posts
Likes Given: 3485

Default

The wonderful thing about this hobby is that we can approach it from as many different ways as there are brewers, and we can all be right.

I think you made a lot of generalizations about folks. Not everyone on here brews to style, or brews "complicated." The whole gamut is represented in our 40,000 members. We have techno geeks, and rdwhahb kings and queens, and all of us are somewhere in between.

I started this thread several years ago in fun but it kinda gives you an idea of the range representated on here Which Brewer are you?

This is an interesting discussion about making ussumptions about us, http://www.homebrewtalk.com/f19/noob-assumption-94899/

__________________

Like my snazzy new avatar? Get Sons of Zymurgy swag, here, and brew with the best.

Revvy's one of the cool reverends. He has a Harley and a t-shirt that says on the back "If you can read this, the bitch was Raptured. - Madman

I gotta tell ya, just between us girls, that Revvy is HOT. Very tall, gorgeous grey hair and a terrific smile. He's very good looking in person, with a charismatic personality... he drives like a ****ing maniac! - YooperBrew

Revvy is offline
 
Reply With Quote Quick reply to this message
Old 01-07-2011, 08:31 PM   #6
ReverseApacheMaster
Registered User
Feedback Score: 0 reviews
Recipes 
 
Join Date: Jul 2009
Location: Keller, Texas
Posts: 4,887
Liked 229 Times on 192 Posts

Default

The more information and more variety (and quality) of ingredients will inevitably lead to refinement of process and diversity of products. I guess I don't understand why you are ranting about people enjoying complexity in their hobby. A gardener that starts with one plant and ends up with a garden full of different plants isn't less of a gardener for branching out. Same goes for homebrewing.

However, you are a bit revisionist in your history of homebrewing. There were competitions with style guidelines before you started brewing. The fact that people can better brew within their desired style seems to be part of your rant, but again I guess I don't understand what you think the harm is.

Although I'm not a huge fan of making every beer a big one and I think it often gets comically ridiculous it is a reflection of the craft brewing around us. Look at the craft breweries and brewpubs also racing to brew the biggest beer with the most X flavor and the quirkiest Z yeast. As much as you might not like it that's exactly what happened in the 90s with IPAs when you started brewing those.

__________________
ReverseApacheMaster is offline
 
Reply With Quote Quick reply to this message
Old 01-07-2011, 08:33 PM   #7
david_42
Feedback Score: 0 reviews
 
david_42's Avatar
Recipes 
 
Join Date: Oct 2005
Location: Willamina & Oak Grove, Oregon, USA
Posts: 25,651
Liked 133 Times on 126 Posts

Default

Brewing to style is a test of your skills. Monster beers are one of the current fads, just like massively hopping everything was the rage 3-4 years ago. And it's a hobby, subject to having money thrown at it.

Unlike most homebrewers, I focus on small beers. There's no room for error below 4%.

__________________

Remember one unassailable statistic, as explained by the late, great George Carlin: "Just think of how stupid the average person is, and then realize half of them are even stupider!"

"I would like to die on Mars, just not on impact." Elon Musk

david_42 is offline
 
Reply With Quote Quick reply to this message
Old 01-07-2011, 08:39 PM   #8
Tinga
Feedback Score: 0 reviews
Recipes 
 
Join Date: May 2010
Location: MN
Posts: 1,160
Liked 36 Times on 28 Posts
Likes Given: 1

Default

to be honest i enjoy hobbies where you can learn a lot about it but never have to apply it all if you dont want to. i just like to know all about a hobby but i dont necessarily apply all my knowledge. i enjoy brewing my own beers and i never really follow someone elses recipe and i have fun doing it.

__________________
Tinga is offline
 
Reply With Quote Quick reply to this message
Old 01-07-2011, 08:39 PM   #9
idlasna
Feedback Score: 0 reviews
Recipes 
 
Join Date: Jan 2011
Location: Manchester, CT
Posts: 10
Default

I started brewing 4 years ago and I find that no one really cares what I brew as long as it is good beer and they are invited over. I'm not one to get all excited over style. In fact, half the time I have no idea what the hell I am brewing. It is all about having fun.

I think the elaobrate equipment that I see on this site is cool. I've made my own chiller and lauter tun and rigged up my own kegerator. Keeping it simple is boring. Is it all needed? Of course not. But it is a blast making these contraptions and then using them to make beer.

__________________
idlasna is offline
 
Reply With Quote Quick reply to this message
Old 01-07-2011, 08:43 PM   #10
Laughing_Gnome_Invisible
Feedback Score: 0 reviews
Recipes 
 
Join Date: Jan 2008
Location: Norwalk, Ohio
Posts: 12,084
Liked 510 Times on 393 Posts
Likes Given: 76

Default

Quote:
Originally Posted by Crucial-BBQ View Post
When I add the water to the grain, the grain cools it to around 150˚ F to 155˚ F or so. At the end of the hour, it cools to 140˚ F or a little bit higher. I mostly brew pale ales, but more hoppy.
Ah, OK. Yeah, while I don't do it any way similar to you, I keep it simple. I havn't used a hydrometer in about two years and never had a problem. If many of the brewers on this forum saw my brew day they would probably have a fit!

As long as it is beer I enjoy at the end, then I got it right. I'm far from a scientist about this process.
__________________

Steven Hawking ~ As we say in science, the England football team couldn’t hit a cow’s arse with a banjo

Laughing_Gnome_Invisible is offline
 
Reply With Quote Quick reply to this message
Reply


Quick Reply
Message:
Options
Thread Tools


Similar Threads
Thread Thread Starter Forum Replies Last Post
Some general questions on my third batch... patrickw General Beer Discussion 6 03-18-2010 12:36 PM
A General Thanks to You All passedpawn General Beer Discussion 19 07-01-2009 01:36 AM
Best general purpose hops McCuckerson General Beer Discussion 4 11-15-2008 05:35 PM
Any general advice? Mustangfreak General Beer Discussion 5 09-30-2007 09:47 PM
What to brew for the general public? CBBaron General Beer Discussion 46 04-20-2007 03:44 AM