Fermentation temperatures are an important, and often overlooked, aspect to brewing. Keeping the temperatures in the yeast’s happy zone will help ensure good attenuation, and reduce the chance of off flavors in your beer.
If you’re like me, you don’t have a spare refrigerator laying around with a temperature controller. You’re largely at the mercy of the elements for fermentation conditions. You need a cheaper, space saving solution. And no, just waiting for the fall is not an option- you need to to brew all-year-round
Continue reading Homebrewing DIY: Building a fermentation chamber out of a water cooler
I have decided to move into All Grain brewing and leave the extract behind for the time being. I have really gotten into brewing and All Grain is more work, but gives you the most control of your beer. Instead of buying a bag of pre-extracted sugars from malted grains, in All Grain brewing you extract all the sugars from the grains yourself.
To aid in this process, you need a container for extracting the sugars from the grain (mashing) , a Mash Tun, and a container for separating (sparging) the sugary water from the grain husks, a Lauder Tun. Orrrr, you can be creative and use the same container for both mashing and sparging, and you can even build it on the cheap with common plumbing equipment and a water cooler. A cooler is ideal, because you need the insulation to help maintain your desired temperatures throughout the mashing and sparging processes. I just built a mash/lauder tun and took some pics of the process.
Continue reading Homebrewing DIY: Building a Mash/Lauder Tun out of a water cooler