Posted July 18, 2013 by Terrence Green in Articles

Why Your Homebrew Sucks. (Article)


Why Your Homebrew Sucks.


face the facts; the “big guys” are the big guys for a reason.  They are able to repeat the process of brewing drinkable beer while the rest of us try to muddle through recipes and equipment failures in order to homebrew something that is good enough to be decent.  For many of us, the majority of our brew days are spent making a beer that will only be decent at best in the eyes of the nicest of judges.  Your homebrew probably does suck and here’s why: 

Poor Sanitation

The importance of sanitation cannot be stressed enough.  The majority of your off flavors will come from this step.   Too many people simply splash some sodium percarbonate in their mash tun and call it a day.  Be thorough.  You need to provide the best area possibly for your yeast to grow and flourish because there’s nothing worse than dumping a 5 gallon screw up due to poor sanitation.

Drinking on the Job

Truth be told, we all enjoy having a beer while we brew.  The problem is that it usually isn’t just one…or two.  The comradery that comes from brewing with buddies is awesome, but it also leads to long discussions about fantasy football which leads to you missing your mash out time or a hop addition.  Have fun, but always remember that this is a science.

Terrible Recipe

The adage, “You have to walk before you crawl” gets ignored so often in homebrewing.  The excitement of being able to make your own beer leads to people that haven’t even perfect a Pale Ale attempting to brew an Bourbon Barrel Imperial Chocolate Nut Brown Porter dry-hopped with Citra.  Slow down there, Turbo.  This is a life-long quest to master this art.  There will be time to experiment later.  First, learn how to take a plain Pale Ale from mash-in to the end of fermentation a few times.  Trying too much too soon will just discourage you because the beer will suck.

Be Patient

Too many homebrewers are in so much of a hurry to drink their beer that as soon as the bubbling stops in the airlock they’re already trying to bottle or keg the beer.  CHILL!  Check your gravity and see if you’ve hit your mark for your final gravity…then check it again 3 days later.  Let the beer sit on the yeast cake for a few days and let it clean up after itself.  This is not a race.  The whole point is to have the freshest, cleanest, dare I say, yummiest beer possible.  Slow down and let the yeast do its job.

Maybe it’s actually good

You may be that lucky guy that actually makes good, drinkable beer.  Congrats.  Homebrewing isn’t all about winning medals, it’s about making something that you can enjoy and share.  So drink up the fruit of your labors.  Prost!

 Stay Thirsty. Stay Foolish.

Terrence Green

Terrence Green
I Like Beer. I Make Beer. I Like Making Beer.