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Old 11-16-2010, 10:26 PM   #1
Nov 2010
Louisville, KY
Posts: 1

I am just getting into home brewing. Picked up "The Complete Joy of Home Brewing" and my wife and I are taking a home brewing class tomorrow. Is there anything you wish you had known when you brewed your first batch. I would extend that to any great recipes, or equipment you wish you had to start with.

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Old 11-16-2010, 10:33 PM   #2
BendBrewer's Avatar
Jan 2010
Bend, Oregon
Posts: 3,134
Liked 78 Times on 60 Posts

I wish I would have known to relax and not worry so damn much. Most people brew their first batch as if they are handling radioactive material near their small children. I know I did.

Use common sense. Be as clean as you would in your mother's kitchen and sanitize what needs to be sanitized. If you have read the book and follow instructions you'll be hard pressed to screw it up to the point that you don't end up with drinkable beer.

Oh, and have a couple beers on hand. It's in the rules.

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Old 11-16-2010, 10:37 PM   #3
Aug 2010
cooper city fl
Posts: 40

Keep a 5 gallon bucket filled half way with water and sanitizing solution(i use the one that came with my first kit) so that way you can dunk everything you need to in there for a quick rinse. Or let stuff sit in there till its needed. Ive done this and it makes life a lot easier if you lay your stirring spoon on the counter by mistake, then u can just rinse it in the bucket and its ready to go again. just makes life easier.

also have lots of beers on hand.

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Old 11-16-2010, 10:41 PM   #4
Jan 2008
Posts: 163
Liked 6 Times on 5 Posts

Filter your water. Next to poor sanitation, IMHO chlorine is the one thing that can really ruin a beer. Either get bottled drinking water from the store or filter your own tap water. In the grand scheme of things, the small $$ it costs to make sure you have good chlorine free water is well worth it when compared with the heartache of pouring the beer you worked hard to make and having it taste medicinal.

My 2 cents.

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Old 11-16-2010, 10:52 PM   #5
Jan 2010
Farmington, CT
Posts: 165
Liked 3 Times on 3 Posts

Be patient with fermentation. Let the yeast do their thing. They know what they're doing. Having said that, they like a nice stable temp. The biggest improvements in my beers on my low-tech system are proper time and temperature for the yeast to work.
Kegged- Scottish Heavy (first kegged batch and I didn't f#&% it up!)
Bottled- Belgian Dubbel (Brewing Classic Styles).
Bottled- French Saison (BCS) Bottled March 17.
Belgian Pale with JP dregs Bottled Feb 3.
Dumped- 1.5 gallons Dubbel on orval/JP dregs colonized by fruit flies :(

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Old 11-16-2010, 10:55 PM   #6
Jan 2008
Clarksburg, West Virginia
Posts: 55
Liked 1 Times on 1 Posts

Depending on what "Recipe Kit" if any you are buying; don't go by the directions that come with them. If you buy a kit, search these knowledgeable boards and go with that.
If you plant ice you're gonna harvest the wind.

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Old 11-16-2010, 10:55 PM   #7
WrongCoastBrewery's Avatar
Oct 2010
Washington, DC
Posts: 365
Liked 8 Times on 8 Posts

Lots and lots of beer. Well, not too much. Dont get too hammered. Then you will come to realize this craft sucks you in.....mainly your money and time. However, I am jealous. Wish my SWMBO was into it as well.
I brew way too much to list!

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Old 11-16-2010, 10:56 PM   #8
Dec 2009
Posts: 1,883
Liked 159 Times on 135 Posts

I wish I had known how addictive this hobby would be.
"Anything worth doing, is worth doing slowly." ~~ Mae West

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Old 11-16-2010, 10:59 PM   #9
Senior Member
ajf's Avatar
Oct 2005
Long Island
Posts: 4,646
Liked 105 Times on 99 Posts

For each brew, take notes.
Trust me, there is nothing worse than brewing a batch of beer that is so much better than anything you could get commercially, but not being able to repeat it, because you can't remember how you did it.

There are only 10 types of people in this world. Those that understand binary, and those that don't.

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Old 11-16-2010, 11:03 PM   #10
Pilgarlic's Avatar
Feb 2010
Tampa Bay, Florida
Posts: 1,330
Liked 138 Times on 109 Posts

Treat chlorine/chloramine and make your first kettle no less than 36 quarts - you're going to buy one soon anyway, might as well skip the intermediate steps.

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