I've made beer with him twice, now, and, if you follow the instructions its pretty easy. And, for between $18 and $21 you can get over 50 bottles of incredible tasting beer!
Step 1: Equipment & Supplies
Pre-assembled kits are available both on line and at local homebrew supply stores. Pre-hopped malt extract kits are the simplest ale kits you can get. These are basically an ‘add water and boil’ ale. (Many folks prefer the creativity of choosing their hops themselves.
Get an equipment setup. Local and online homebrew supply retailers offer pre-assembled brewing equipment kits. You can make your own rudimentary equipment kit for less money, but then you must obtain instructions on how to assemble the kit and how to use it. Instructions on how to use the kit are included in the pre-assembled kits.
Sanitize all brewing equipment with the sanitizing agent of your choice. There are many kinds of sanitizing agents that are chlorine based, acid based or oxygen based. Again, you can get these online or from a local supply store.
Step 2: On Brew Day...
2. Bring 2 gallons of water to 150 degrees
3. Remove water from heat and stir in the crushed crystal malt grains.
4. Let the grains steep for approximately 30 minutes.
Step 3: Brew Day Continued
6. Place the liquid back into the boil kettle (no heat under it at this point) and stir in malt extract, (syrup or powder).
7. Bring liquid to a rolling boil and add your first hops choice.
8. Set the timer for 30 minutes.
9. At the 30 minute point, add approximately ½ of your second hops choice and set the timer for 15 minutes.
10. When the timer goes off add the other ½ of your second hops choice and set the timer for 15 minutes.
11. When the timer goes off add your third hops choice and remove from heat.
Step 4: Cooling the Liquid
Step 5: Beginning the Fermentation Process
Step 6: Fermentation Continues
15. Dump, do not mix , the yeast starter into the fermentation vessel.
Step 7: Storing the Brew for Fermentation
17. Insert the airlock.
18. Store fermentation vessel in a location where the temperature is between about 65 to 72 degrees and where it will not get disturbed for at least 10 days.
Fermentation should begin within 48 hours of dumping in the yeast. Watch for signs of fermentation. You should be able to see bubbling in the airlock system you’ve chosen. You can remove the lid of your fermenter to check for bubbling, but this is not the advised method due to the possibility of creating a sanitation problem. (Note: those using a glass carbois have a much easier time seeing fermentation progress.)
Fermentation generally lasts between 3 and 10 days. You can determine the completion of fermentation when there are no bubbles in the airlock system or use a hydrometer. Your recipe kit will tell you what the correct hydrometer reading is.
If you're not sure that fermentation is done you can agitate the fermentation vessel (bucket) in such a way that the liquid whirlpools inside. This re-invigorates the yeast.
Step 8: Bottling
20. Dispense beer into bottles using the autosiphon and cap.
21. Store bottled beer at room temperature for 10 to 14 days.
22. 10 to 14 days later you can enjoy the fruits of your labors! Drink responsibly!