Skilled Gentlemen Podcast Forum

Skills Talk => Beer Brewing => Topic started by: Dan on April 01, 2016, 04:34:44 PM

Title: Brewing 101
Post by: Dan on April 01, 2016, 04:34:44 PM
Ok so my old brother inlaw used to brew up his own scotch and beer but I've never though about it until recently.
He had a massive watertank with a pump and basically an entire room full of stuff to brew all different types of spirits.

I don't want that. Is is possible to have a very low tech low key brewing operation? Like one I could have down in the garden shed.
Now I don't drink often and only very little when I do, but I'd still enjoy a good beer after a 40degree day!
So basically, what would the minimum requirementd be to brew beer or scotch? Low budget is good budget here haha.
Title: Re: Brewing 101
Post by: Clay on April 01, 2016, 07:10:24 PM
Brewing beer is super simple and a lot of fun.  I have done a few batches that are around 5 gallons. The start up cost is pretty low and it does seem like you have some materials already. 

5 gallon brew pot
6 gallon bucket with spout
cleaning supplies
air locks
I think that is it...

Your can either go with a starter kit or just go through and supplement what you dont have.

The ingredients are pretty inexpensive if you find the right store.  In the US I either go with a brew company in Charlotte NC called Alternative Beverage ( ( or Northern Brewer ( (  I am not sure if they ship internationally, however it is not hard to find a company.

In total you are probally not going to invest more than a hundred dollars or more.  Your batches are going to end up being around 5 gallons or so and will get around 45 to 50 beers. 

You should really check out the podcast I did on the topic (

I plan to do a step by step video on the topic just as soon as I get another brew kit to help partner with the audio.
Title: Re: Brewing 101
Post by: Dan on April 01, 2016, 07:29:12 PM
That sounds easy enough! Ah the app I use on android doesn't go back very far with your shows. Ill check it out on the website. So do you need electricity? Garden shed isn't hooked to power
Title: Re: Brewing 101
Post by: Clay on April 01, 2016, 07:42:43 PM
Yeah it is really easy, as long as you have a little bit of guidance.  The only electricity you need is for the first day during the brewing process.  You have to brew your batch.  The rest of the process is just your fermentation period which will take 5 to 6 weeks and then bottling is without power and then leaving the yeast to do their work for another few days in the bottle.

AHH I really want to brew another batch!!!  It is summer time... might be time to brew a summer ale. 

If you like the beer brewing show you might want to check out the Beer Basics show ( (  I dive into how the differences in beer, history, and then some fun toasts at the end.

If you come up with any other questions, please ask.  I will print them off and add them to the video that I plan to make.
Title: Re: Brewing 101
Post by: Dan on April 02, 2016, 05:07:29 AM
Fantastic thank you for your hell. I'll check out those two shows tomorrow while I mow and do the gardening chores!
So 5 gallons works out to be 18.9L so I guess I could round up to 20L. The produce store has them for like $5.
6 gallon works out to 22L so maybe I couls find a 25L container for that. The rest I cab checj out a brew store I fould locally on google. Sounds like a fun project.

Summer ale sounds nice. How bout Ginger beer? Apple cider? They would be under the same principles?
Title: Re: Brewing 101
Post by: Dan on April 02, 2016, 10:05:37 AM
Whoops, that's alot of errors...but you know what I mean :)
Title: Re: Brewing 101
Post by: Clay on April 02, 2016, 04:15:17 PM
oh  yeah I know what you mean.  I saw some advertisements for ginger beer on the norther brewer website.  I have never done it, but for as cheap as it is you might want to just go for it.

When I did the math for just the ingredients to make the beer and not the equipment, the cost came out to just over a dollar a beer for an expensive brew.  The cheaper one I did before winter last year came out well below a dollar a beer.

The cider is going to be a lot different.  You are going to want to get the yeast to stop eating the natural sugars during a certain point in the brew process.  You will have to use a refractometer to measure the gravity... I think its called a refractometer.  Then the batch has to be put in the freezer to kill the yeast just at the right moment.  This will leave you with a crisp and naturally sugary cider.

Keep in mind that if you skip the freezing process and just drink the cider early, you can end up hurting yourself.  I read somewhere that the yeast can sit in your stomach and eat sugars (bread and starches) and create alcohol in your stomach which could end up making you sick.  You might want to research that to make sure my memory served me correct.
Title: Re: Brewing 101
Post by: Dan on April 02, 2016, 05:05:56 PM
Firstly, wow that's really cheap. A carton of beer here for say corona is around $50 and a cheap beer is around $38...I know because I just bought a $38 carton haha.
Second, I think I'll stay away from cider at this point...sounds too risky to me. I'll get an handle on the simple beer process first!
Like always, cheers for the information.
Title: Re: Brewing 101
Post by: Clay on April 02, 2016, 05:33:40 PM
yeah, absolutely no problem.  Once I get the video done about how I brew beer I will post a link here on the forum.
Title: Re: Brewing 101
Post by: Clay on July 26, 2016, 04:54:39 PM
I have started the beer series.  I have more video to edit and when it is done it will be posted in this series.