Homebrew on the horizonRSS feed

Posted: Thursday 20 December, 2007

by Dan at 12:34pm in Recipes 7 comments Add your own

A long time ago we tried making our own wine. It wasn't a total disaster, but while the resultant blackcurrant and pea-pod wines were alcoholic and just about palatable, they didn't seem to be worth the effort - a 3 quid bottle from Tesco was infinitely better than anything we could produce ourselves.

Our wine kit was duly sold on eBay, and we've been happily drinking supermarket wine ever since.

One thing we're talked about many times since then has been brewing our own beer. Never ones to be put off by previous failure we're now embarking on that particular journey - today I ordered a Premium Real Ale Starter Kit from Brew it Yourself.

Rosemary's now talking about growing some hops this year, and making beer from first principles... will we ever learn?


Johnnie Walker

Thursday 20 December, 2007 at 1:05pm

I started brewing beer about a year ago. My advice is to have a couple of goes with the kits (Woodfords are the best I've used) until you've got the hang of it.

After a few brews, invest in an insulated mash tun, big pan ('copper') and have a go at the 'full mash' method - the results are much closer to a proper cask conditioned ale and it's not that much more effort.

Good luck and give me a shout if you need a hand!


Thursday 20 December, 2007 at 1:39pm

Brilliant Johnnie, thanks. That's what Rosemary has in mind, and it's good to know we have someone to call on with some experience!


Thursday 20 December, 2007 at 8:55pm

Dan, we've done both wine and beer, wine mostly from higher-end kits, and beer both from kits and from "first principles".

It's perfectly possible with a bit of practice to brew up stuff that you'd be happy to serve to guests. We only drink home made wine nowadays, and at around £1.50 a bottle, it's a fair old saving being the old lushes that we are ...


Thursday 20 December, 2007 at 9:06pm

I'm envious David, but hopefully the beer will go well and maybe it'll spur us on to try wine again. Then we can afford the lush lifestyle too. :-)


Friday 21 December, 2007 at 1:08pm

When ever you need help with the tasting, Dan. I'm only a phone call away


Friday 21 December, 2007 at 2:40pm

That's a kind offer Mr Molenaar but this first kit's only 40 pints! With your reputation aren't I going to need a bigger barrel?


Wednesday 2 January, 2008 at 2:25pm

I have used many kits over the years, and like the first poster, I heartily recommend Woodfords kits - particulary Wherry and Nelson's Revenge. These kits are in a different class to the usual cheaper ones. I have never tried brewing from hops and malt though so I look forward to hearing how it goes!

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