Hops and Dogs – A Lethal Combination

by Brad Smith on September 24, 2015 · 2 comments


Hops and spent hops are poisonous to dogs. Last week I received another heartbreaking note from an owner who had lost their dog after it consumed some spent hops left in a compost pile. Over the years I’ve received several of these notes, so I thought I would put together a short article to raise […]

Olive Oil Instead of Aeration for Beer Brewing

by Brad Smith on September 14, 2015 · 11 comments

Bakers yeast

Aerating your wort with oxygen after the boil to promote a healthy fermentation is standard practice in the brewing industry. However, over the last ten years a small group of commercial and home brewers have been pioneering an alternative – olive oil! When I first heard of the idea of adding a tiny amount of […]

Siphon Secondary.

This week I take a look at ways to brew great beer while cutting down the time needed for fermentation and aging. A few weeks ago in part 1, I covered how to save time during your all grain brew day by overlapping steps and minimizing time wasted. Keys to a Rapid Fermentation The first […]

Creating an Equipment Profile in BeerSmith

by Brad Smith on August 2, 2015 · 1 comment


Creating an equipment profile for your particular brewing system is an important first step for new users of BeerSmith brewing software. The equipment profile is used throughout the program to calculate estimates of beer color, bitterness, original gravity and volumes. The profile can also be used to scale recipes found on the BeerSmithRecipes cloud or […]

Hop Tea and Sampling Your Beer Brewing Hops

by Brad Smith on July 21, 2015 · 1 comment

Hop Bine

Brewers often ask me which hop varieties to use for their home brewed beer recipes? The short answer is to use the variety that fits the style of beer you are brewing and also the one you enjoy the most! The longer answer is that you need to sample your hops – and using a […]


We’re all incredibly busy these days and many of us are short on time to brew. So this week in part 1 I take a look at ways to shorten your all grain brewing session so you can brew more beer in less time. In part 2 we’ll take a look at ways to speed […]

Why Oxygen is Bad in Your Home Brewed Beer

by Brad Smith on June 18, 2015 · 0 comments

beer with hope and wheat still-life

Commercial brewers go to extreme lengths to reduce the amount of oxygen in their finished beers, and as a home brewer you should be concerned about oxygen as well. Oxygen can spoil the long term stability of your beer flavor and clarity and lead to a variety of off flavors. Oxygen in Fermentation versus Finished […]


Dr Charlie Bamforth, Distinguished Professor of Brewing Science from the University of California at Davis joins me this week to discuss malted barley, its alternatives and the huge impact malt has on beer. Subscribe on iTunes to Audio version or Video version Download the MP3 File – Right Click and Save As to download this […]


Controlling your mash pH is a critical concern for all brewers using all-grain, but can be a special concern for those using Brew-in-a-bag (BIAB) or decoction mashes with high water to grain ratios. The larger water to grain ratios used in these mashes can lead to higher mash pH during conversion, so brewers need to […]


BJCP President Gordon Strong joins me to discuss the 2015 BJCP Beer Style Guide update that was just released by the Beer Judge Certification Program. The new, expanded style guide is used worldwide by home and professional brewers for competition and brewing great beer. Subscribe on iTunes to Audio version or Video version Download the […]


Parti-Gyle brewing, sometimes incorrectly called party-gyle brewing, is an ancient technique where more than one beer is made from multiple runnings of a single mash. This week we’re going to take a look at this technique and how you can use it to brew great beer at home. The term parti-gyle is the English name […]


Mash pH is an important concept for all grain brewing. While you can make “good” beer without worrying about pH, brewing truly great all grain beer relies on understanding the concept of mash pH and its impact on beer. Understanding pH You probably had a simple introduction to the concept of pH in your High […]

Three of my Favorite Beer Styles with Recipes

by Brad Smith on April 20, 2015 · 0 comments

Stout Lineup

I don’t consider myself much of a competitive beer brewer, so I primarily brew what I enjoy brewing. So today I thought I would share a few of my favorite beer styles and provide links to a few recipes you also might enjoy. These are all ales you can brew yourself easily at home without […]

View Your Cloud Folder Online

This week I provide a few tips to get the most out of the BeerSmithRecipes.com cloud site. I launched the BeerSmith Recipes site almost three years ago and it has grown to a collection of over 300,000 beer recipes making it perhaps the largest beer recipe site on the internet. Getting Started with the Cloud […]


Have you ever missed your original gravity (OG) target when brewing all grain beer? Its not an uncommon problem for beer brewers, particularly when you start all grain brewing or change you equipment setup. This week we’re going to examine some of the possible causes of low OG and also how to mitigate them. Predicting […]