Fining Agents – Improving Beer Clarity

by Brad Smith on December 30, 2008 · 37 comments


The clarity of homebrewed beer is cherished for many beer styles. This week we look at a variety of fining agents you can use to improve clarity and eliminate cloudiness.

Pilsner Lager Recipes – Beer Styles

by Brad Smith on December 14, 2008 · 13 comments


Pilsner beer is remarkable not only for its modern dominance, but also its relatively recent origins. The popularity of Pilsner is truly worldwide, so much so that Pilsner recipes still dominates the US and many other beer markets. It is simply the most popular beer style in the world. Pilsner’s origins can be traced to […]

Infusion Mashing and Decoction for Brewing Beer

by Brad Smith on November 28, 2008 · 5 comments

Mash profiles have a significant impact on home brewed beer. Using an authentic mashing technique for a particular beer style will improve the flavor, clarity and character of your finished beer. This week we provide an overview of mash techniques and their impact on your beer. The Single Infusion Mash A single step infusion mash […]

Chilling Your Brew: Building an Immersion Chiller

by Brad Smith on November 20, 2008 · 17 comments

When brewing beer, its critical to quickly cool your brew before adding yeast to minimize the chance of infection. Today we look at how to build a simple immersion chiller using copper tubing purchased from your local hardware store.

Best Hop Techniques for Homebrewing

by Brad Smith on November 11, 2008 · 19 comments

This week we take a look at the best hop techniques for homebrew beer – our hop technique roundup. A good understanding of various hop techniques is critical for successful brewing. Yet the wide array of hopping techniques with terms such as mash hopping, first wort hops, dry hops, boil hops, and late hop additions […]

Belgian Wit Recipes – White Beer Styles

by Brad Smith on November 2, 2008 · 20 comments

Belgian Wit is a wonderful light, refreshing beer that narrowly avoided extinction to become a popular hit here in the United States. This week we’ll take a look at the history, brewing and recipes for Belgian Wit and White Beer.

Brewhouse Efficiency for All Grain Beer Brewing

by Brad Smith on October 26, 2008 · 34 comments

Brewhouse efficiency is a term that causes some confusion for first time all grain brewers. This week we take a look at how to calculate brewhouse efficiency and mash efficiency for all grain beer brewing.

An Interview with Brewing Author John Palmer

by Brad Smith on October 13, 2008 · 1 comment

This week we are happy to have an interview with John Palmer, the author of a How to Brew as well as Brewing Classic Styles. John first published his ebook on the web as a home project, and only later found a publisher. You can find the full text of his popular book online at […]

For many years I never worried about balancing pH or even what my water profile was when brewing. After all, the beer was fine and most of the time I was brewing with extract, so pH did not matter much. However once I started all grain brewing, the water I brewed with suddenly started to […]

Troubleshooting Homebrewed Beer

by Brad Smith on September 21, 2008 · 65 comments

This week we examine the topic of troubleshooting homebrewed beer. Despite the best laid plans of mice and men, not every beer you brew is going to be a homerun.

Brewing to Lose: 10 Tips for Making Bad Beer

by Brad Smith on September 14, 2008 · 1 comment

Losing is a topic that little has been written about. Yet losing is something that every brewer needs to know. This week we’ll focus on how to make really bad beer to keep you out of the winner’s circle.

Scotch Ale Recipes: Beer Styles

by Brad Smith on September 6, 2008 · 7 comments

Scotch Ale brings forth visions of fog filled bogs, dimly lit pubs and a hearty pint of ale. Scotland has always had its own distinct brewing style with an array of unique beers from the 60/- shilling light Scottish ale to the “wee heavy” strong ales. This week we examine the history of scotch ales […]

Decoction Mashing for Beer Recipes

by Brad Smith on September 1, 2008 · 11 comments

Decoction mashing is a great way to enhance the flavor and clarity of your all grain beer recipes, and requires only minimal additional equipment and time. Few homebrewers use decoction mashing in their recipes, but it is a very powerful technique for enhancing many styles of beer. This week we’re going to demystify decoction mashing so you can add it to your arsenal of homebrewing tools.

Brewing Water – Hard or Soft?

by Brad Smith on August 24, 2008 · 45 comments

Brewing water plays a very important role in the flavor of your homebrewed beer. Knowing the character of your local water source as well as how to adjust it to improve your beer is a critical skill, particularly for more advanced brewers. Water impacts beer in three ways. Water ions are critical in the mashing […]

Malt Extract Beer Brewing

by Brad Smith on August 16, 2008 · 16 comments

Brewing with malt extract (liquid or dry) is the starting point for every new brewer. This week we take a look at how to optimize your beer by understanding malt extract and the brewing process.