Ingredients for Irish Stout
All that stuff above is this: malt extract, roasted barley, hops, yeast. Not pictured: water. (I’m guessing you already know what that looks like.)
That stuff, plus a big old kettle, a couple of five gallon plastic buckets, and a few other basic accessories is all you need to brew your own beer.
Why brew your own beer? Many reason, here are some.
- It’s cheaper. On average, the cost of ingredients for one five gallon batch, which will yield about two cases, is what you would pay of a single case of the same style.
- It’s better. ‘Cause you get to control where it’s kept (away from the light, away from the heat), and how long it’s stored — those all important conditions that affect the quality of your beer.
- It’s funner. C’mon. You’re making your own beer. How cool is that?
If you like good beer and are into making your own food, you should be seriously considering this.
I can’t teach you how in a single blog post, but let me point you in the right direction. First, get a hold of The Complete Joy of Homebrewing by Charles Papazian. There are other books, but this one’s the first, and in my humble opinion, still the best. Read it, and you’ll get religion.
Next, find a good homebrew store, one where you’ll not only find all of the supplies you need, but also dedicated moral support. If you live in Philly or environs, that’s Home Sweet Homebrew. Proprietors George and Nancy taught me everything I know about making beer, and I’ve been successfully and happily brewing my own beer for nearly seven years.
So what am I making with the ingredients picture above? Irish stout. For Donna and me, it’s our go to beer. It tastes good, it‘s easy to make, it pairs with a lot of dishes. And at around 4% alcohol, it won’t put anybody on the floor too quickly.