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  1. Question
    #1

    1st time brewing beer

    So, I've decided to give brewing beer a go, and tbh i'm a complete novice.

    It has been suggested that I visit Brewcraft in Mt. Eden and pick up a 1st time brew kit. My plan is to have a go and brew a few batches then look at replacing my gear with better equipment if required. I'm also making my way through some swing-bottle Grolsch in the hope of using these at the bottling stage.

    Can anyone give advice on:
    1. The best starter kit to use? Or what kits NOT to use.
    2. Should I use Grolsch bottles or something else?
    3. Any other do's and don'ts?

    I've got these 2 books on the way as well:

    http://www.amazon.com/How-Brew-Every...3463321&sr=8-1

    http://www.amazon.com/Complete-Homeb...3463321&sr=8-2

  2. Post
    #2
    I'll help you drink it.

  3. Post
    #3
    Digital Citizen wrote:
    I'll help you drink it.
    GPOD AKL homebrew meat?



    Once I get this show on the road i'll sort out a visual diary of my 1st brew. I think Yossarian has done something like this before?

  4. Post
    #4
    falco wrote:
    GPOD AKL homebrew meat?



    Once I get this show on the road i'll sort out a visual diary of my 1st brew. I think Yossarian has done something like this before?
    whaka yeah!!!

  5. Post
    #5
    Brewcraft are good, but I'd suggest Brewers Coop in Panmure if you can make it there. They have good complete kits and various beer types, as well as bottles, capper if required, etc. Very helpful chaps, Brewcraft guy had us standing around for ages before being served.

    Keep an eye on the supermarket for ingredients too, I picked up some Coopers lager for just $12 as well as carbonation drops cheap, sterlisation mixture was half the price of Brewers Coop.

    The lager was great, was drinking it in just 10 days and we've made another batch for Xmas which is being stored atm. The whole process is quite idiot proof just follow the instructions and make sure you sterilise anything that is touching the batch.

    Attached Images


  6. Post
    #6
    And from Brewers Coop I pciked up a wine kit on special, this lot was bottled in June and will be drunk over Xmas. The wine is also incredibly easy to make, just follow the instructions and you're done, makes @32 bottles (each ingredient kit costs @$120).

    Attached Images


  7. Post
    #7
    Once u have had a go making boring bland kit lagers, have a crack at making beer properly with real hops and malt and experiment, much fun

  8. Post
    #8
    I get all my supplies from http://www.greatexpectations.co.nz. they're really helpful. Some advice: use plastic bottles, much cheaper and less likely to explode. Make sure everything is clean and sterile. While it's brewing try to keep it at a constant temperature. i like the muntons range of kits. i really want to go all grain but i can't find a big enough pot.

  9. Post
    #9
    Oh wow is exploding bottles a real worry? How many times can you re-use plastic bottles?

    Cheers for the info Prom, Panmure is easier than Mt. Eden so i'll go there instead.

    A Pilsner is my ultimate goal...


    What can I expect as a normal turn-around from start to DRINK?

  10. Post
    #10
    Stay away from Cooper's... it's utter ****. Other than that google, there's a few thing's you need to know, and it's a precision hobby, not "oh ye 27c she'll be right", it depends on what your brewing etc, there's a few homebrew forum's out there that will be a much better place for info than here.

  11. Post
    #11
    falco wrote:
    Oh wow is exploding bottles a real worry? How many times can you re-use plastic bottles?

    Cheers for the info Prom, Panmure is easier than Mt. Eden so i'll go there instead.

    A Pilsner is my ultimate goal...


    What can I expect as a normal turn-around from start to DRINK?
    Quickest is 2 weeks for something rough and ready for beer, but the longer you leave it (months) the better the taste and flavour. The lager in the photo was just 10 days old and quite cloudy but still very drinkable on the sunny day it was.

    Brewers Coop have many different brands/types, even DB and loads of European variations - here's just one list, including stout, cider, pilsener, etc. Join their loyalty programme and eventually you'll have enough points for discounts, free stuff.

    Have a squiz through Youtube, there's quite a few how to videos. It really is very simple, provided you follow the instructions.

    +1 on the plastic bottles to begin with too.

    The kit you'll get from Brewers Coop includes hydrometer, external thermometer (you'll need to keep the carboy at a good constant temperature with little variation, we wrapped ours up in a blanket and put it on a polystyrene block) and watch out for the yeasty smell while it's fermenting. I wouldn't recommend keeping it in your bedroom unless you plan to stay single

    Considering how much people drink mass produced beer & wine, the advantage of home brew is the variation in batch, which happens because the temperature varies, or the type of water you use, or if you add too much/little carbonation drops and stuff like that - so ignore the kind words from somedude and give it a try

    It's home brew, not brain surgery so you don't need to be precise to the point of crying yourself to sleep because the temperature got to 18.5c


  12. Post
    #12
    plastic bottles won't loo as cool as grolsch bottles...

    oh yeah i'm definitively planning to give it a go. And i'm prepared that it may not taste like the most awesomest [sic] beer ever.

    cheers for the advice guys.

  13. Post
    #13
    krazykripple wrote:
    i really want to go all grain but i can't find a big enough pot.
    I was looking for a pot in chch, went to an industrial kitchen wholesalers and their cheapest 30-40L pots were around $250NZ

    To my surprise the local brewshop (yourshout.co.nz) had 40L one for $99 don't think you'd find one cheaper. Sure its thin as hell and looks like it could be a wrestling prop, but it seems to work fine and i've seen many similar used on brew vids from the USA.

    Partial mash brews are a pretty decent balance of variables to adjust and tinker and learn from while not requiring quite as much gear as full grain. I'd thoroughly recommend

  14. Post
    #14
    -(Prometheus)- wrote:
    And from Brewers Coop I pciked up a wine kit on special, this lot was bottled in June and will be drunk over Xmas. The wine is also incredibly easy to make, just follow the instructions and you're done, makes @32 bottles (each ingredient kit costs @$120).
    they ar a good bunch of guys out there.

  15. Smile
    #15
    some dude84 wrote:
    Stay away from Cooper's... it's utter ****. Other than that google, there's a few thing's you need to know, and it's a precision hobby, not "oh ye 27c she'll be right", it depends on what your brewing etc, there's a few homebrew forum's out there that will be a much better place for info than here.
    My dad makes and drinks coopers and i used to drink it, If brewed well it tastes fine.

    You can add or subtract to a brew with sugar or using dextrose (either can effect the taste a bit)
    Add hops or malt or a variety of other ingredients But for the first few brews, "simple" will see you right till you feel a bit experimental.

  16. Post
    #16
    So i'm going to use swappa crates as bottles. In terms of storage for my beer once it's bottled and i'm waiting for it to be ready to drink - i'm thinking leave hte bottles in the swappa crates (2x) and put the entire crates into a large plastic container (with a lid!) from the warehouse. Is this a good/bad way to store the beer?

  17. Post
    #17
    good idea, but putting both the crates into one large box will be really heavy to lift. as long as the bottles arent in direct sunlight they should be fine just in the crates

  18. Post
    #18
    I was more worried about any leaking (or explosions!).

  19. Post
    #19
    I got the Cooper Tun starter kit from your shout in chch last night. I've got it all going in the fermenter tank now.... cruising at 17-8 deg... should take longer but lager yeast don't mind it being a little cool.

    I'll dry hop it this weekend to boost it a bit (I love my beers hoppy)... I'm using the Mangrove Jack kit Munich Lager + brew enhancer dextrose.