One day, two months ago my husband said, “I’m going to make beer”. It seemed a random goal at the time because I am use to his numerous declarations and lack of actual follow through; it wasn’t something I took too seriously. Sure I joined him on a trip to the local book store; I always need a new fantasy book to put in my bookshelf. But he dragged me around the cooking section looking for a book about making beer. He found the most colorful, idiot proof looking book in the brewing section: Beer Craft by William Bostwick and Jessi Rymill. The pages are full of color with lots of graphics and a picture of the authors sporting hipster outfits in a small apartment style kitchen on the back flap. The first page starts with: “Forget everything you know about homebrewing.” (Don’t forget about this reference, I will return to it in later posts.) Husband says triumphantly, “Done! I didn’t know anything to start with!”
During the next week I am bombarded with random facts about beer and the chemistry of brewing. Did you know…? By our next day off work, I was escorting him and a friend to a local home brewing shop. I’m not going to say how much we spent because it gives me heart palpitations every time I think of it, but they spend a lot more than I was expecting. Less than two weeks later my husband and his buddy were proud beer papas. It really was easy.
The most inspiring thing about this project was the de-mystification of the entire beer making industry. No one makes beer. Beer is bought at the store and you put it in your fridge then you drink it after a long day at work. Actually how that beer gets into the bottle and to the store, is taken for granted. How is it made? Shrug it off. I don’t know. The beer company makes it. Magic. But when you have raw ingredients and the internet, creating delicious home crafted beer is simple and attainable.
I think it is important to know how things are grown, crafted and sculpted. This is not only true with brewing, but with daily cooking and baking as well. When you know where things come from and how they are made it is easier to control what you eat, what you buy and how you live your life.
Bottoms up! And enjoy your own crafted beer.