Tag Archives: homebrewing

Brewing Glossary


They key acid in vinegar. This acid can appear in homebrew batches easily if proper sanitation methods are not used. If a batch is seriously infected it can either be allowed to continue production and used as kitchen vinegar or the batch of homebrew must be destroyed.


A crystallized blend of acids commonly found in wines. Used by homebrewers to correct PH balance in batches that are too alkaline. The blend is often preferable to using any single brewing acid to promote an overall balance of flavors.


Acidity is the PH or acid level of wine. Most finished wines are naturally high in acid and this is often a hallmark flavor in most wines. A high acidity also helps preserve the wine over time. The opposite of acidity is alkalinity.


Fermentation in the presence of oxygen. The first few 20-40 days of fermentation is aerobic. The aerobic fermentation stage is often the most active (lots of bubbling and foaming) and usually takes place in a sealed bucket with several inches of airspace above the liquid. The majority of alcohol is produced in the the aerobic fermentation stage.


Any secondary source of starches or sugars such as rice, oatmeal, corn, corn syrup, other grains, etc. Used more in beer making than wine.


Any device that allows gas flow in only one direction. Most airlocks used in home brewing are small plastic devices partially filled with liquid. The design allows carbon dioxide gases produced during fermentation to exit the fermenting container without allowing contaminated air to re-enter.


Referenced in homebrewing as drinkable or Ethyl Alcohol or Ethanol, CH3CH2OH. Causes intoxication and has preservative properties. Produced by yeast as a byproduct of the fermentation process.


The percentage of a liquid (wine in this case) that is alcohol. This can be determined by comparing beginning sugar levels in a batch of homebrew with the ending sugar levels.


The lack of acid.


The more advanced form of beer brewing that involves malting grains. The alternative is using a malt extract which is faster and less involved method of brewing, but does not allow for as much control over the recipe as mashing and sparging your own grains. More advanced homebrewers often prefer milling and mashing their own grains instead of using extracts.


The second stage of fermentation that is conducted in an oxygen-deprived environment, usually in a glass carboy with a minimum of air space. Great care is taken during this stage of fermentation not to over-expose the wine to air by means of splashing or sloshing. This stage of fermentation is less responsible for the production of alcohol, but produces more of the characteristic flavors usually found in wine.


The smell of a wine, also called the “nose” of a wine or the bouquet. This is especially important in all food since the human sense of smell and taste are closely related.


Vitamin C. Usually found in a powdered crystalline form and used as a key component in acid blend. A moderate to large amount of ascorbic acid can help prevent your wine from getting a “rusty” or over-oxygenated flavor.


A component of flavor in a wine’s taste. This is often best described as the “dryness” of a wine or the flavor that makes you want to pucker your lips. This flavor is found abundantly in red wines especially and is caused by tannins in the wine (usually extracted from grape skins). White wines generally have far fewer tannins and thus do not taste as dry normally. They also help in aging a wine. Wines without high tannin levels generally do not age well. A highly astringent wine can be mellowed by allowing it to “breathe” after opening, thus oxygenating the wine.


The robustness of the yeast in their ability to convert sugars (in various forms) into alcohol. Various strains of yeast have different attenuation levels and are often suited more for brewing one type of beer over another. See also, Flocculation.



The traditional winemaker’s form of measuring alcohol potential of must (unfermented wine). It measures dissolved solids in the wine (almost entirely sugar) and can be used to predict approximate alcohol levels in a finished wine. Specific Gravity measurements are more accurate. Most modern hydrometers measure both Balling and Specific Gravity. Balling is also known as “Brix” or “Brix Level”.


Oak barrels are most commonly used in traditional wine making. The wood gives specific flavors to wines and also allows for controlled oxygenation and evaporation. The charring of a barrel also has an effect on flavor. Modern homebrewers can use oak chips or oak flavor extracts to achieve these flavor effects but are arguably a poor substitute for oak aging. Not all wines benefit from oak storage. Also used heavily in the production of whiskey or other distilled spirits for the same flavors as well as in some beers.


31 US gallons. Most kegs are ½ barrels.


The generic term used to refer to any given iteration of fermentation in the brewing industry.


A tube used to vent carbon dioxide from fermentation. If one end of the tube is submersed in water and the other end is sealed inside the fermentation vessel a blow-off tube ban be used as an airlock.


A flavor characteristic often described as the “mouth feel” or the overall taste and texture of a wine taking into account all of a wine’s components .


The odor or smell of a wine, usually used to describe a more complex blend of smells from an aged wine.


Wine distilled to produce a higher alcohol content.


See Balling.



Chalk. Used to leech acids from wine. This is generally no longer used because it can leave a cloudy residue.


A sterilizer used in home brewing. Each tablet contains a minor amount of potassium metabisulfite. It is often easier to measure and crush tablets than to get an accurate measuring of sterilizer. Too much sterilizer in your wine can destroy it’s flavor. Wait at least 24 hours after using campden tablets on your wine before adding yeast, otherwise the tablets may hinder your yeast as well.


The mass of pulp and fruit skins that accumulate at the top of a primary fermenter. This mass should be “punched down” or broken up several times daily to keep bacteria from growing in the mass and to further expose the wine to the vital flavor agents in the plant mass. The use of a fermentation bag (usually made of nylon) can help keep a mass from forming, but the bag should still be squeezed regularly to extract flavors from the fruit.


See Crystal Malt.


The gas given off by yeast as part of the fermentation process. Also protects wine and beer from over-oxydization during fermenting. Carbon dioxide dissolved in a liquid also produces the “fizz” found in beer and bottled sodas.


The process of dissolving carbon dioxide in a liquid such as beer, wine or soda.


A container usually made of glass or plastic with a narrow or tapered mouth designed to expose as little of the liquid stored inside to air as possible. Glass has several advantages over plastic such as ease of sterilization, not absorbing flavors or leeching petroleum used in the plastics into the wine as well as generally being easier to clean. The standard size is 5 gallons, but other sizes are also available. Commonly referred to as a “water jug” since they closely resemble the storage drums that office water dispensers use.


Acid commonly found in oranges and other citric fruits. A major component in acid blends used in brewing.


The processes of making an opaque liquid clear by removing suspended solids. This is often accomplished by the use of fining agents such as bentonite or sparkloid or by mechanical filtration. To clarify a wine is to make it “bright” or “brilliant”.


To remove the water or other non-essential components from a liquid to make it more compact. (Think orange juice from concentrate). Malt Extract is concentrated wort (unfermented beer). Grape concentrates are also available for homebrewing wines. This is especially useful for making hard-to-find wine or for making wine from fruit that is out of season.


A derogatory term used for wine made from grapes or fruits that are not generally used in commercial winemakeing. Pear or Strawberry wine are referred to as country wines because traditional winemakers consider these fruits unsuitable for making wine because the sugar and acid levels often have to be manually adjusted prior to fermentation. Anyone who has ever tasted good country wine will often prefer it to any store-bought wine.


The generic term for any brewing operation that is not conducted on a large industrial scale. This encompasses everything from making wine or beer in your kitchen to larger commercial operations that emphasize quality and flavor over mass-production. Your next door neighbor’s personal recipe beer is a craft brew and many consider operations such as Samual Adams beers to be a craft brew because it focuses more on flavor and quality than on cost.


A major type of brewing grain that does not require mashing. Used by extract and whole-grain brewers alike.



To pour a liquid from one vessel to another for the purposes of “breathing” or to serving from the other vessel.


A sweet wine usually served after dinner with deserts where it compliments the flavors best, sometimes fortified. Especially sweet wines are often called dessert wines. Usually has a marked lack of astringency.


A starch molecule created from starch during the mashing process that also contributes to the “body” of flavor of a beer. Also a type of crystal malt that adds especially high levels of dextrin to beer.


A somewhat complicated process of removing yeast sediment from a bottle without allowing the carbonation in the liquid to escape. This is especially useful in making champaign which is highly carbonated. In fact is is sometimes even called “champaigning” and is accomplished by freezing the necks of the bottles and removing the sediment settled in the neck (bottles frozen upside down so sediment settled there) and re-corking. Not normally practiced by homebrewers.


The process of condensing alcoholic beverages (usually by heat and condensation) to concentrate flavor and raise the overall alcohol content. Distilling without a commercial license in the US is illegal unless for fuel or agricultural purposes. A home-made distillation assembly is often called a “still” and is used to produce bootleg alcohol (aka moonshine). Distillation can produce toxic chemicals if not carefully controlled.


The opposite of sweet. Various yeast strains have different tollerances to the presence of alcohol. Some yeast will die off in in a liquid with a relatively low alcohol level while others will thrive in very high alcohol levels and convert virtually all sugars. Therefor, the yeast used has a large effect on the dryness of a finished wine or beer.


The process of adding hops purely for flavor effect either during or after fermentation. This process avoids extracting any of the bitter compounds found in hops but contributes much to the flavor and aroma. Commonly used in pale ale style beers.



Drinkable alcohol (CH3CH2OH), the byproduct of fermentation, also used recently as a “biofuel”.



A false bottom is simply a strainer used in the sparging process of beer production. This strainer can either be built directly into a brew pot or vessel or can simply be a mesh (usually nylon) bag used to separate grain from liquid in the sparging process. Think of it as a built-in strainer.


The process of yeast eating sugar and outputting drinkable alcohol and carbon dioxide as well as other secondary byproducts that usually form sediments. Fermentation is divided into two stages, Aerobic (with oxygen) and Anaerobic (without oxygen). The majority of alcohol is created in primary fermentation while most flavor characteristics are created in secondary fermentation.


See Airlock.

FERMENTER / Fermentor

The container in which fermentation takes place, usually a wide mouthed vessel for primary fermentation and a small mouthed vessel for secondary. Usually made of glass or plastic for homebrewing and stainless steel for commercial brewing


The process of removing solids from wine or beer. This can be done by mechanical filter (usually with a paper medium) or by use of fining agents such as bentonite, sparkloid or freezing. Great care should be taken with mechanical filtration methods as they can easily over-expose wine to air and thus oxygenate the wine and adversely affect the flavor. Mechanical filtration is not as popular in homebrewing but is industry standard in commercial winemaking.


Additives used specifically to clarify, filter or otherwise remove solids from a beer. Common fining agents are bentonite (an ionized clay) and sparkloid but eggshells, irish moss and even bull’s blood has been used to force particles to coagulate and settle to the bottom of a container.


Clumping together of particles so that they can settle to the bottom of a container by means of gravity (perciptation). Various strains of yeast have specific flocculation qualities. See also, Attenuation.


To boost or otherwise raise the overall alcohol content of a wine by means other than fermentation.



A measurement of the sugar in a liquid. Measurements are temperature sensitive and are usually calibrated for 70 degrees. 1.065 is 65 gravity points. Used to calculate the initial sugar in a batch and compare to the finishing gravity after fermentation to determine alcohol content. More accurate than Brix scale.



A small green bud that provides the flavor, aroma and bitterness to all beer. Often added to beers in various stages of boiling or after boiling (known as dry-hopping). Also a key natural preservative in beers. The quality of hops have a direct effect on the quality of finished beer.


A device used to measure the gravity or bix of a liquid to determine sugar content and thereby evaluate alcohol content. Commonly a weighted glass tube with measurement lines that is suspended in liquid. The reading is taken at the point where the glass tube protrudes from the liquid. Temperate compensations must be made for readings. Most homebrewing hydrometers are “triple scale” which displays brix (or balling), gravity and overall potential alcohol.



The grimey foam produced during beer fermentation that is often removed for flavoring reasons. Also referred to as a method of fermenting in a finished bottle in order to achieve carbonation by means of saving some of the original un-fermented solution and adding back to the beverage at the time of final bottling. A more complicated method of carbonation but often praised for better flavoring.



See Sparging and Lauter Tun.


Any container designed specifically to sparge wort through grains for the purposes of extracting additional sugars and flavors. Usually equipped with a false bottom to separate grains from liquids. Most often used for a vessel dedicated to this purpose but can also be any makeshift container or set of containers that serve this purpose.


Winemaker terminology for sediment that accumulates at the bottom of a fermentation vessel. Regular racking is required to separate wine from sediment since prolonged exposure can cause undesirable flavors.



One of the common acids in acid blend, mostly derived from apples.


Conversion of maltic acid to lactic acid, a much less noticeable acid. This reduces the overall acidity of the wine and adds key flavor characteristics. This is usually accomplished by adding specific bacteria cultures during fermentation.


This has several meanings in homebrewing. Malt is the extract composed mostly of sugar (concentrated wort) used when brewing beer from extract. This usually comes in either a syrup or powder form.

Malt is also the term used for the grains that whole-grain brewers use for non-extract brewing. The process of “malting” is the stage where grains are soaked and starches are converted to sugars. There are 3 major methods of malting that result in the 3 distinctly different varieties of malted grains used in brewing, Roasted, Caramel and Pale Ale.


A concentrated syrup packed with malt sugars used as a base for homebrewing beers. It is essentially concentrated wort. Extract brewing is the simple form of home beer brewing as opposed to All-grain brewing does not use a malt-extract since they mash the sugars and flavors directly from the grains manually in the mashing process.


The process of soaking malted grains in water at various temperatures to promote enzymes to convert starches to sugars. Temperature is critical in this process as the enzymes activate in specific temperature ranges. After several periods of soaking at the given ranges the water is drained off via a “false bottom” or a nylon bag. The same liquid may also be run-through the grains again in a process known as sparging in an effort to extract as much sugar and flavor as possible from the grains. The final product of mashing is a sweet liquid known as “wort” which is high in sugar and highly fermentable.


The container used to hold grains and liquids during the mashing process. Can be a simple kettle or a container with a false bottom to allow easy separation of liquid from solid.


A chemical in the sulfite family that is used both in industrial and home winemakeing. Potassium metabisulfite is the active ingredient in campden tablets and is often added directly to wine batches to sterilize them. Sodium Metabisulfite is commonly used as a sanitizer.


The wine maker’s equivalent to wort. This is the un-fermented mixture of fruit and flavor agents with sugars. Wine is often called “must” until after the fermentation process is complete.



The over-exposure of wine to oxygen. This is generally not an issue during aerobic fermentation when oxygen is needed for yeast development. Over-exposure of wine to air during secondary fermentation by means of allowing headspace in a carboy, allowing water to splash during racking or during a mechanical filtration process can all easily cause over-oxygenation. This will drastically effect the flavors of the wine giving a harsh, stale or sometimes “rusty” flavor. Wine should always be kept in a sealed container with a minimum of airspace.

Some harsher wines, especially astringent reds, benefit from mild or controlled oxygenation. This is accomplished either through aging in wooden barrels that allow controlled oxygenation when monitored or by opening a bottle and allowing it to “breath” for a few minutes before serving.

Acids in wine can help protect from over-oxygenation just as the acid from lemon juice will keep an apple from turning brown when exposed to air. The corrosive properties of oxygen interacting with metal also produces rust.


A key element in the air we breath, used and monitored very closely during the brewing process. It is essential in the first stage of brewing and is avoided at all costs during the second stage of brewing.


The intentional process of allowing or introducing oxygen into must or wort prior to or during the first stage of fermentation. Oxygen helps in the reproduction of yeast cells. Oxygenation can be accomplished by many means such as leaving the wine exposed to headspace in the primary fermenter, shaking vigorously, or directly injecting oxygen into a liquid by means of an airstone. Once fermentation switches to secondary the oxygen will have either been depleted or displaced by carbon dioxide produced by yeast.



A naturally occurring enzyme that will break down the cellular structure of fruit and allow more juice extraction from fruit. It is really only needed in fresh fruit wines. Wines from extract or in meads that do not use fresh fruit do not generally benefit from pectic enzymes.


A measurement of ionic charge. Lower numbers have high concentrations of negative charges and higher numbers have positive charges. This is closely related to acidity, but does not represent a total profile of the acidity of a batch. Proper pH plays a role in fermentation and how overall flavor plays out in any given batch of wine or beer. Testing kits and pH correctors are available.


See metabisulfite


A stabilizer added to wine to coat yeast cells and prevent replication. It will only work when there is not an active fermentation present. It cannot fully arrest a fermentation, but it can help to control it. Usually added just prior to bottling.


The scale on the hydrometer that measures dissolved solids (mostly sugars). It shows the theoretical alcohol content of a wine if fully fermented until all sugars are consumed. Compare before and after fermentation readings to get actual alcohol levels. Specific Gravity measurements are generally more accurate.


The first phase of fermentation (aerobic fermentation, in the presence of oxygen) marked by rapid escape of carbon dioxide and occasionally foaming. This usually takes place in an wide mouthed container (like a bucket) with a given amount of headspace to promote access to oxygen. 80-90% of the alcohol that will be produced during fermentation will be produced during primary fermentation.


Adding carefully controlled amounts of sugars to a finished beer just prior to bottling. This produces controlled fermentation in the bottle and creates carbonation in the wine or beer.



The process of syphoning wine from one container to another with the intent of leaving behind sediments (lees). This is usually accomplished by means of a “racking cane” which is a tube of stiff plastic that is placed in the container with sediment present in such a way as to siphon the liquid and leave the solids at the bottom behind.


Brewing grains that have been roasted in a kiln for extended periods to produce darker richer flavors usually found in porters or stout beers. Roasted malts do not require mashing and are commonly used by both extract and whole grain brewers alike.



see hydrometer


The second stage of fermentation where exposure to oxygen is carefully controlled. Most of the traditional flavor and body of wine is produced during secondary fermentation. The remaining sugars in the wine are also converted to alcohol.


The process of separating liquids in a mash from the solids (grains) and then soaking the liquids through again to flush any residual sugars or flavor agents that remain in the grains.


Wine with carbonation (fizz) such as champaign. Allowing in-bottle fermentation will produce sparkling wine. Take GREAT care to limit the amount of sugars available to yeast during in-bottle fermentation or the bottles may pop their corks from gas pressures or explode entirely.


see gravity


To kill or control all microbial activity (yeast and others) in a wine prior to bottling. This is crucial to producing a consistent wine and prevent in-bottle fermentation. This is usually accomplished by means of adding Potassium Sorbate or campden tablets. It is absolutely essential if the wine is to be re-sweetened prior to bottling.


The primary form of chemically stored sugar in grains, rice and starchy veritable such as potatoes and pastas. In brewing, starches are converted to sugars by enzymes during the mashing process. This is not necessary in wines since most fruits do not store sugar as starch, but store them as simple sugars instead.


Wine without carbonation or “fizz”


The bane of all winemakers. This is a fermentation that has halted prematurely. This can be caused by several factors from improper temperature, to lack of nutrients for yeast to function to acid levels. If you are unsure if your fermentation is suck or finished measure with a hydrometer. If no dissolved solids are present (sugars) then fermentation is finished. You are ready to stabilize and bottle or you can add more sugar to continue fermentation. If the hydrometer still registers the presence of sugar then it is stuck.

To un-stick a fermentation first check and regulate temperature. If that does not resume fermentation then add additional yeast nutrient and check of acidity and ph. If that does not resume fermentation light a candle in honor of Baccus, the god of wine, and pray daily over your wine.


Sulfer dioxide which acts as an anti-oxidator and preservative.


The term used for a gravity feed of liquid using a tube from one container to another, commonly called “racking” in the wine industry.



An acid found in grape skins and other fruit skins as well as in grain husks. Tannin produces the astringent flavor in wine that makes you want to pucker your lips. Found in high levels in red wines. Higher tanning levels improve the aging quality of wine. Beer brewing and white wines do not typically use tannins.


A naturally occurring acid in ripe grapes that may form crystalline sediment. Does not generally have an effect on flavor


Acid that will eventually free of of it’s positive H+ ions and allow for accurate measure of acidity.


The act of measuring of ion charge by adding a special base and observing color change. Measures total acid.


See Titratable Acid.



Acetic acid and other compounds that make common household vinegar. This is the bane of all winemaker and usually means that vinegar bacteria had hopelessly infected the wine batch. Make plans for what you’re going to do with five gallons of salad dressing.


Wine Grapes. Grapes specifically suited for winemaking. Noted for high sugar content and usually has thicker skin.


This term has several meanings today. When used as a verb it is the process of harvesting and processing wine grapes. It is also used to describe any especially good year’s wine batch. Among wine snobs it typically means aged wine from a very good year. Also generally means something that is older and should be cherished.



See Airlock.


The sweet mixture of unfermented sugars and flavors produced from malting and mashing grains to make beer. Usually pronounced as “wert” or “wort”. The corresponding winemaker’s term is “must”.



Single-celled microorganisms from the fungus family used to ferment beer and wine and in bread making. Various strains of yeast have different characteristics such as alcohol and temperature tolerance, flocculation rates and flavor notes. Excellent source of Vitamin B.


A blend of nutrients, minerals and other components that promote healthy and viperous yeast growth and fermentation in general. Especially needed in meads which are made from honey and do not necessarily contain yeast-friendly elements. Can be beneficial to almost any batch of beer or wine.



The science of fermentation


Apple Pie Mead Recipe

Apple Pie Mead

INGREDIENTS six gallons:

10-15 lbs honey. (lighter honey would probably work best for this)
6-8 tsp. Super Ferment (or 12 tsp. regular “nutrient”)
6-8 tablespoons acid blend
6 tsp grape tannin
1 campden tablet* (not necessary if using pasturized honey and bottled apple juice)
6-12 tablespoons pre-mixed apple pie spice (usually available in the supermarket)
1-2 pkgs. wine (e.g. Premier Cuvee, Champagne, Cote des Blancs, Sherry) or mead yeast
Add apple juice (Oceanspray works great) to six gallons (Specific Gravity – 1.085 – 1.105)


Blueberry Mead Recipe

Blueberry Mead (1 gallon)

** tried it w/o the jasmine. Very good stuff!


* 2 lb clover honey
* 2 12-oz bag blueberries (frozen)
* 1 used teabag jasmine tea
* 1/2 tsp pectic enzyme
* 1 tsp Super Ferment (or 2 tsp. regular “nutrient”)
* Red Star Champagne yeast

Mix honey into 3 qts water and bring to boil. Boil 20 minutes, skimming off any scum that forms. Meanwhile, place thawed blueberries in nylon straining bag and mash in primary. Pour boiling water over blueberries, used teabag, pectic enzyme, and yeast nutrient. When cooled to 70-75 degrees, sprinkle wine yeast over surface. Cover and squeeze nylon bag daily for 7 days. Drain blueberries, squeezing well to extract flavor. Discard teabag. Transfer liquid to secondary, fit airlock and ferment additional 30 days. Rack, top up and refit airlock. Stabilize when clear, wait 10 days, and rack into bottles. Age 1-2 years. [Adapted from a traditional recipe] Recipe fromhttp://winemaking.jackkeller.net/reques28.asp


Blackberry or Dewberry Wine Recipe

**I’ve made 2 or 3 six gallon batches of this stuff and it’s always been heavenly every time. You can’t go wrong with this stuff.

INGREDIENTS (for 1 gallon):

4 lbs. blackberries or dewberries
2 1/4 1bs. sugar (or specific gravity of 1.090)
1/2 tsp. Super Ferment (or 2 tsp. regular “nutrient”)
1 tsp pectic enzyme
1 gallon water
1 campden tablet (crushed and dissolved in 1/4 cup hot water)
Wine yeast
*** The addition of a teaspoon of acid blend may be necessary later, depending on the tartness of the fruit.


Note- All equipment must be well washed and sterilized with a solution of sodium metabisulfite to prevent contamination.

1. The fruit should be picked when ripe. Wash well. Place the fruit in primary fermenter and crush. Pour 1 gallon hot water over fruit and add the dissolved campden tablet and sugar. Stir well. Cover.

2. Allow to cool to room temperature (about 70° F). Add pectic enzyme and stir. Cover. Stir well every 8 to 10 hours.

3. At the end of this first day, dissolve the yeast in a small quantity of lukewarm water for 10 minutes and pour this “starter” on to the must. Cover the fermenter. Cover securely with plastic sheet and allow to ferment 30-40 days. Stir twice daily.

4. When the foaming has ceased, strain out the fruit pulp. Syphon into 1 gallon secondary fermenter and attach air lock. Be sure jug is filled to neck and lock is tight.

5. Allow to ferment to completion (specific gravity of 1.000 or less). Rack off sediment into another secondary or, if not available, rack into primary fermenter, clean out & sanitize secondary, then immediately rack back into secondary. Allow to age about 1 month or until perfectly clear. If clear and stable at this time, the wine may be bottled. If not, rack once more and allow to clear another month (add 1/2 campden tablet per gallon when racking).

6. Stablilize the wine with 1/2 tsp. potassium sorbate and 1/2 campden tablet per gallon. If a sweeter wine is desired, sweeten to taste with either fructose or with sugar syrup (1 cup sugar to 1/2 cup boiling water). Bottle and cork the wine, then stand upright for 2 – 3 days to allow corks to expand. Then lay wine on its side to age for 4 – 6 months. Drink and enjoy!!!!!!


Strawberry Wine Recipe

** I’ve made this as mead using honey instead of sugar and it was absolutley horrible for the first six months.

INGREDIENTS (for 1 gallon):

3 1/2 lbs. strawberries
2 1bs. sugar (or specific gravity of 1.090)
1 tablespoon Super Ferment (or 6 tsp. regular “nutrient”)
4 drops liquid pectic enzyme (1/2 tsp. pectic enzyme powder)
1 tsp. acid blend
1/4 tsp. grape tannin
1 gallon water
1 campden tablet (crushed and dissolved in 1/4 cup hot water)
Wine yeast (Red Star Cote des Blanc, Lalvin 71B-1122, champagne)

Note- All equipment must be well washed and sterilized with a solution of sodium metabisulfite to prevent contamination.

1. The fruit should be picked when ripe. Wash well. Place the fruit in primary fermenter and crush. Pour 1 gallon hot water over fruit and sugar. Add the dissolved campden tablet. Stir well. Cover.

2. Allow to cool to room temperature (about 70° F). Add pectic enzyme and stir. Cover. Stir well every 8 to 10 hours.

3. On the next day, add the acid blend, tannin, yeast nutrient, and wine yeast. Cover securely with plastic sheet and allow to ferment 30-40 days. Stir once daily.

4. When the foaming has ceased, strain out the fruit pulp. Syphon into 1 gallon secondary fermenter and attach air lock. Be sure jug is filled to neck and lock is tight.

5. Allow to ferment to completion (specific gravity of 1.000 or less). Rack off sediment into another secondary or, if not available, rack into primary fermenter, clean out & sanitize secondary, then immediately rack back into secondary. Allow to age about 1 month or until perfectly clear. If clear and stable at this time, the wine may be bottled. If not, rack once more and allow to clear another month (add 1/2 campden tablet per gallon when racking).

6. Stablilize the wine with 1/2 tsp. potassium sorbate and 1/2 campden tablet per gallon. If a sweeter wine is desired, sweeten to taste with either fructose or with sugar syrup (1 cup sugar to 1/2 cup boiling water). Bottle and cork the wine, then stand upright for 2 – 3 days to allow corks to expand. Then lay wine on its side to age for 4-6 months. Drink and enjoy!!!!!!


Elderberry Wine Recipe

**great stuff. Tastes a bit like grape but smells like feet. I’ve been meaning to try it with honey instead of sugar. Very good stuff. I think the stuff made with dried berries tastes much better than the professionally prepared elderberry wine bases.

INGREDIENTS for each gallon to be made:

6 oz. Dried Elderberries or 3 lbs. fresh elderberries
1 gallon Warm Water
2 lbs. Sugar
1/2 – 1 lb. Chopped Raisins (optional)
1 tsp. grape tannin
1 1/2 tsp. acid blend
1/2 tsp. Super Ferment (or 2 tsp. regular “nutrient”)
1 campden tablet (crushed) or 1/8 tsp. Sodium Metabisulfite
Wine Yeast

1. Mix all the ingredients EXCEPT the wine yeast in primary fermenter. Stir well to dissolve.

2. Allow to stand for 24 hours. Stir several times during this period.

3. Add wine yeast to a cup of lukewarm water. Cover and allow to stand 10 – 15 minutes. Now add to fermenter and cover with lid or plastic sheet and tie down.

4. Ferment for 30-40 days (until S.G. 1.030). Stir daily to break up pulp cap. Strain out the pulp and knead to extract the juice. Syphon into sterilized secondary fermenter and attach fermentation lock.

Note: A second run may be made from the discarded pulp. Add another gallon warm (not hot! ) water, more sugar, more acid blend (increase amount to 2 tsp.) and more yeast nutrient. Ferment 10 days on the pulp. Continue the original procedure. A lighter wine will result.

5. Rack into another sterilized jug at three weeks and attach fermentation lock. Always fill the jug as full as possible. Rack again in about 1 month.

6. When wine is clear and stable, it may be bottled. The addition of 1/2 tsp. potassium sorbate stabilizer is recommended. If a sweeter wine is desired, add simple syrup to taste (2 parts fructose or sugar to 1 part boiling water).

7. Bottle and cork and stand upright for 3 – 4 days then lay on its side and allow to age for 4-6 months in a dark, vibration free place.

NOTE: All equipment must be well washed and sterilized with a solution of sodium metabisulfite.


Honey Mead Recipe

** 15 lbs of honey in 5 gallon batch makes good sweet but 20 lbs of honey is like cotton candy. I like to use the pasteurized processed clover honey from Sam’s Wholesale club or Wal-Mart. I’ve tried different honey with varying result. The honey makes a dramatic difference in the body and flavor of your mead. Pasteurized and processed honey negates the need for campden tablets as long as you’re not putting in anything else that may be contaminated with bacteria. Use good filtered water too. It really makes a difference. I use a Britta filter.

INGREDIENTS for each gallon of mead to be made:

2 1/2 to 3 lbs. (about 26 – 32 fl. oz.)unprocessed honey (dry to semi-sweet)
Water to one gallon (Specific Gravity – 1.085 – 1.105)
1 tsp. Super Ferment (or 2 tsp. regular “nutrient”)
2 tsp. acid blend (or 3/4 tsp. tartaric acid & 1 1/4 tsp. malic acid)
1 tsp grape tannin
1 campden tablet* (crushed- or substitute 1/8 tsp. sodium metabisulfite)
1-2 pkgs. wine (e.g. Premier Cuvee, Champagne, Cote des Blancs, Sherry) or mead yeast

1. Mix all the ingredients EXCEPT the yeast and the campden tablet. Stir the must until the honey and additives are completely dissolved. Cover the pail to keep out dust and air with the large plastic sheet.

2. Crush and dissolve the campden tablet in 1 oz. of warm water. Add this to the must and stir well. Cover the pail again and tie down the plastic sheet. Let the must stand for one day, stirring several times.

*ALTERNATIVE: Heat honey with an equal volume of water to 180°F and let stand for 15 minutes to pasteurize. (DO NOT BOIL!) Cool and add remainder of water before proceeding to next step.

3. Rehydrate the dried yeast by sprinkling it into 1/2 cup lukewarm (95 – 100° F) water in a sanitized jar and cover for 20 minutes. (If using “Mead” yeast, prepare a starter 48 hours prior to using.) Add the yeast “slurry “/starter to mixture. Re-cover the primary fermenter and allow fermentation to proceed for 30-40 days or until foaming subsides.

4. Syphon the mead into a sterile glass jug. Avoid the transfer of sediment and aeration as much as possible. Be sure the mead completely fills the jug – into the neck. Attach a fermentation lock and allow the fermentation to go to completion (.995 – 1.020 S.G.).

5. One week after fermentation has ceased, syphon the mead into another sterile glass jug. Again, avoid the transfer of sediment and aeration. Crush, dissolve and add 1/2 campden tablet per gallon to the mead. Allow the mead to stand for one month in a cool dark place and repeat “racking” process. If at the end of three months, the mead is clear – bottle it. If it is not clear, repeat this step every month until it is clear and then bottle it. The mead may be sweetened to taste with additional honey, if desired, after stabilization (1/2 tsp. potassium sorbate & 1/2 campden tablet per gallon).

Note: All equipment should be well washed and sterilized with a solution of sodium metabisulphite. Fermentation temperatures should be no lower than 60 degrees F. or higher than 80 degrees F.

For an interesting variation, try adding a 6 oz. can frozen juice (e.g. orange, apple, cranberry) and cut back on the acid blend by 1 tsp.

Ratio for different meads – (parts by volume honey: parts by volume water)

DRY: 1:4 (2 1/2 lbs. honey per gallon)
SEMI-DRY: 1:3 (3 lbs. honey per gallon)
SWEET: 1:2.5 (4 lbs. honey per gallon)

Large Plastic pail or earthenware crock (primary fermenter)
One gallon glass jug (secondary fermenter)
Fermentation lock & drilled rubber stopper
Syphon tubing
5 ” Fifth” wine bottles and corks per gallon
Large plastic sheet


Homebrew FAQ

Will I go blind?

I am not a doctor, or a lawyer or a candlestick maker, nor do I play one on TV, but I can tell you that you will most likely go blind only if you put lye in your wine and then manage to rub it in your eyes. Given the fact that lye in your wine is not recommended since it will most likely kill you I tend to think going blind is the least of your worries in that situation. The whole business of going blind has to do with distilling alcohol from beer and wine and wort, etc.

If you don’t know what you’re doing with a still you might “put your eye out” so to speak, but the simple act of making wine or beer as discussed in these pages is about as dangerous as taking a shower. Well, actually, I’ve heard of people dying from falling in the shower. I’ve never heard of anyone dying from making homebrew so maybe it’s quite a bit safer than even that. In either case, follow the simple directions given on the site, avoid getting wine, lye or sharp pointy sticks in your eyes and don’t muddle about with distilling until you have a bit more skill and you should be fine. When all else fails, ask a question of whom should know the answer like on our discussion board.

How much Yeast do I add?

In short? It doesn’t matter. Really. It honestly doesn’t. The whole point of home brewing is to allow the yeast to flourish and divide and multiply and make little yeast babies so they make more alcohol. So long as you have SOME yeast in there you should be good to go. Yeah, I know, those little packages say “makes 5 gallons”… well, those people want you to buy more yeast then don’t they? If you pay attention to my Yeast Need Culture video you’ll see that once you buy yeast once you really never have to buy it again. Don’t believe me? Do some research into sourdough making. Really good sourdough comes from a culture that’s kept living for years and years. When you started a new batch you just broke off a bit of the mother and worked it into the new bread. Same concept with cloning yeast. Just make sure some yeast get in there and you’re ok.

If I add more yeast will it go faster?

Well, maybe, but only to a point. You can’t add 5 gallons of yeast to one gallon of wine and have it done yesterday. It takes a little time. So long as you’re adding at least a teaspoon of either dried yeast or an active yeast culture to your batch it’ll get rolling on it’s own. Adding more yeast will likely only buy you a few hours in the grand scheme of things.

Will baker’s yeast work?

Yes Yes Yes, you can use baker’s yeast. It will work. In fact, bakers used to get their yeast for baking from the local brewers. These days though the yeast are much more specialized. Baker’s yeast is designed to make a lot of gas and as little alcohol as possible. Brewers yeast is focused on making alcohol and surviving in said alcohol. Yeast also have a large effect on flavor. Baking yeast will tend to make your batch taste like baked goods. If you’re going for a beer that tastes like fresh baked bread then that might be a good thing. The way I look at it is you need to use the right tool for the job. If you’ve got to build a new deck you can use a screwdriver or a hammer but a power drill or a nail gun would work a whole lot better, wouldn’t it? Spend the 75 cents to order the good yeast online and watch my Yeast Need Culture video so you never have to do it again. If you can’t afford the 75 cents, should you really be blowing your money on alcohol?

Will XYZ juice work?

If it’s a natural fruit juice it will 99.9% of the time work just fine. No worries. Heck, you can even ferment kool-aid as long as it has real sugar in it. Yeast need real sugar though, nothing with artificial sweetners will work.

My balloon (or condom) deflated and it’s only been 2-5 days. Is it done?

Yep, probably so. Yeast sometimes work fast and there probably wasn’t a lot of sugar in your juice. If your batch isn’t making enough pressure to keep the balloon deflated then it’s ready to drink. If you want to improve the flavor by clearing it with bentonite or freezing and thawing it now is the time to do it.

Turbo Yeast?

You will occasionally find “turbo yeast” that will make alcohol in like 48 hours. I honestly don’t think this turbo yeast is anything more than champaign yeast which is a very hearty and tenacious variety of yeast. Yes, it will some of the alcohol converted in 48 hours, but I guarantee it won’t be nearly as much as there would be if you give it at least a week to work. For best results I recommend giving your batch 30 days.

If I add more sugar will it make more alcohol / will it take longer?

Yes and Yes. By how much? that’s largely a function of time, sugar levels, temperature and type of yeast used. For new brewers the best way to see if a batch is finished fermenting is to wait for the bubbles to stop or the balloon (or condom) to go down. Experienced home brewers can use a hydrometer to test the wine’s sugar level.

What will my alcohol % be?

Buy and use a hydrometer. That’s really the only way to tell. I can give you a ballpark though. A finished beer is usually between 3 and 6% alcohol. A wine is usually between 7 and 14%. If you REALLY push it I understand you can get upwards of 20% alcohol from fermentation, but you better have some serious yeast, sugar and time on your hands.

Will this stuff get you $(@)%!ed up?

Yes, just like with any alcoholic beverage you buy it will get you drunk. While my personal philosophy is to stop drinking when everything is funny you’re a grown adult (hopefully) and your mileage may vary.


Tips and Tricks

Homebrewing Tips & Tricks – Stopping a Fermentation Early For the Newbies If you’re new to the subject of home brewing let me give you the nickel tour so the rest of this article will make a bit more sense. Even if home brewing is old hat to you, a review never hurt anyone. Home brewing (or sometimes called homebrew) is the term used for creating beer, wine and other drinkable alcohol at home on a non-commercial basis.

Notice I said non-commercial. I didn’t say non-professional. You gotta pay attention to what you’re doing or you may end up with some funky brews. All drinkable alcohol is created by little microbes called Yeast. Yeast eat sugar and output 2 products of note, drinkable alcohol (ethanol) and carbon dioxide gas. The Co2 is important in some forms of brewing, but isn’t really relevant in this discussion. The act of yeast converting sugars (usually suspended in a liquid like grape juice) into alcohol and Co2 is called fermentation. Other relevant information includes the fact that yeast multiply at an astonishing rate. Adding a few thousand yeast cells to a batch of wine can force a bloom of yeast cells in the billions in a day or two. The more yeast present the more sugars are getting converted. You should also realize that the method by which yeast reproduce is mitosis, aka, the cells literally split in 1/2 and continue growing to produce 2 cells from the 1.

Timelines Most of the alcohol in any fermentation is created in the first 15 to 30 days. A good 80-90% of the alcohol in fact. After that point the alcohol levels are starting to get so high that it begins to inhibit the yeast’s ability to convert sugars. It’s a slow up hill fight from there for the yeast to continue fermentation. Alcohol is poison to yeasts. Thats’ why they dump it out of their cells in the first place. The more of it present in a solution the slower the yeast work. Eventually as the alcohol level continues to rise the yeast start to die off. This slow process of the yeast dying as the alcohol level rises can take anywhere from another 30 days to up to an additional 2 years!

Why stop a fermentation? There are many reasons, but by far the most common is you want to be able to drink your batch of home made wine/beer without waiting all that extra time. After all, a 80-90% of your alcohol is made in the first 15 to 30 days. Unless you’re trying to make some especially exquisite wine or aged beer or you want that extra 10-20% alcohol because you’re making home-made rocket fuel then what’s the point of waiting right? So, lets say your cousin’s best friend’s next door neighbor’s aunt Gertrude is getting married. She’s had your home made wine because your cousin just couldn’t keep his yapper shut about the bottle you gave him for christmas last year. (that’s the last time you give him free alcohol for xmas!) So Gertrude wants to cheap out on her open bar at the reception and have you make 6-7 gallons of the good stuff. No problem. Let her buy the supplies and give them to you.

Wait… the wedding is in 2 months you say? Well, crap. What to do? You could just start the batch asap and give her the wine in 2 months with an active yeast culture in it, but as Alton Brown would say, that’s not good eats. Having an active yeast culture in a brew might be ok for some beers, but it’s bad news for delicate flavors like wines. You definitely need to stop the fermentation and remove the yeasties. How do you stop a fermentation early? How do you kill all those nasty yeast buggers after they’ve slaved to make your ethanol?

Yeast and Ice Crystals Here’s where things get all scientific like. You may have noticed that when you freeze fruit and then thaw it the fruit loses some of it’s firmness and lets out a LOT more juice. This is because the process of freezing, especially slow freezing creates large ice crystals. Ice is made of water. Yeast have lots of water in them. What happens if you turn the water in the yeast into an ice crystal? Crystals can be sharp. I bet they’ll tear those yeast beasties to pieces. Oh, the HORROR! So, if you freeze your home brew it’ll kill all the yeast? No… It will kill MOST of them, but yeast, especially wine yeasts, are vigilant little monsters. A few will survive the freezing process and as we learned above if you have just a few cells they’ll likely bloom again when the temperature rises and create more yeast and the next thing you know you have a full blown fermentation going again.

Potassium Sorbate What you need is a one-two punch. You need something that will keep the yeast that survive from multiplying again. That’s where Potassium Sorbate comes in. This stuff is routinely used by home brewers right before bottling. It coats the yeast cells in a kind of varnish that keeps them from splitting so they can’t reproduce. If they can’t reproduce the fermentation cannot get any more intense. It’s very important to note that potassium sorbate does NOT kill yeast. It only keeps them from multiplying.

Why not just add wine sanitizer? You could add a chemical agent such as campden tablets or wine sanitizer (usually sodium metabisulfite or something similar) to kill the yeast, but you would need a LOT of tablets and that would not taste good and the sanitizer doesn’t taste good either. It should be noted that campden tablets are nothing more than tablets with a few grains of sanitizer in the middle. Throwing in a hand full of those is the same as adding sanitizer. Sanitizer tastes BAD. If you dont believe me mix some up and take a swig right now. You’ll spit it right out. I’ll wait. You can continue reading when you finish gagging. Most sanitizers are sulfites anyway and some folks are sensitive to sulfites so I try to keep them out of my wines as much as I can. You still need sanitizer to clean your brewing equipment, but I do try to keep it out of the wine itself when possible.

The method (to the madness) I’ve experimented with this method over the years and I’ve found that if you mix potassium sorbate into a batch you’re ready to “kill” and then siphon the wine into small jugs like 2 liter soda bottles or even gallon jugs you can then freeze them solid in a deep freeze. I got my deep freeze for like $150 at my local Sam’s Club. Of course now my wife is using it to store a dozen frozen lasagnas, mixed veggies and a dozen loaves of bread she bought on the cheep at the bread store so I can’t use it for home brewing…. but i digress. Buy your wife her own freezer and tell her to leave yours alone. You may be tempted to try and freeze whole 5 gallon batches in the same container. I can tell you from personal experience it doesn’t work as well. It takes much longer to freeze a higher volume of liquid, much longer to thaw and by the time its all thawed again you might as well have just waited the 2 years for the yeast to die anyway. Freezing in smaller containers works MUCH better.

Remember that most of your brew is water and water expands when it freezes so leave some room in the bottle for this. I learned this lesson the hard way when I opened my chest freezer at the house and the bottom of it was covered in a sheet of frozen wine. It wasn’t fun chipping that stuff off the bottom of the freezer. It was tasty, but not fun. In my experience, if you use 2 liter bottles to freeze and you have a good 5-10 cubic foot chest freezer you can drop the bottles in, wait two days to freeze, pull them out, wait 1-2 days to thaw (at room temp.) and then re-freeze and thaw one more time. The whole process takes about a week. After that point 95-99% of the yeast are dead and sitting in a heap of sludge at the bottom of your bottles.

Is it perfect? The freezing method above isn’t 100% reliable. I would say it’s closer to 80% reliable honestly. Your stuff can still re-ferment in the bottle, but the chances of that are MUCH lower than if you hadn’t froze the batch. The freezing also killed most of the yeast cells and piled them up at the bottom of your bottles so you can siphon off the much clearer and crisper tasting wine and leave the gunk in the bottom of the bottles.

Bottle in Plastic My final suggestion is to bottle in plastic, not glass. Glass is elegant and great for gifts, but in all honesty you really dont know if your batch is going to start to re-ferment in the bottle. Glass isn’t really designed to take a lot of pressure (well, champaign bottles are, but unless you have a LOT of those laying around…). Plastic IS designed to take the pressure, especially if it’s a bottle that had a carbonated drink in it like 2 liter soda bottles. Lets be honest anyway, If you’re going to pop open a bottle of the good stuff with a few buddies you’re probably going to suck down a 2 liter between everyone anyway.

Anyone who’s been home brewing for any amount of time knows that as soon as you pop open a new bottle of something you have someone knocking at the door, “just to say hi”. If you really don’t think you can finish off a 2 liter in say 2-3 days then you want something that’s more single-serving sized. After 2-3 days in the fridge a 1/2 full bottle of wine will start to taste funky because of oxidation.

You could get one of those neat and expensive argon gas gadgets out on the market to replace the air in the bottle with argon, but that’s kind of a waste of money imo. I would just use single serving plastic coke bottles (like the 16-20 oz sizes) or maybe even invest in one of those little “wine saver” pumps that users a rubber stopper and a manual pump to suck all the air out of a bottle. Those really do work pretty well. Besides, if you bottle in plastic you can always squeeze test your bottles periodically. (It’s kind of hard to squeeze test glass) If they’re getting hard they’re probably fermenting again and you want to use them soon or at least crack the top open periodically and vent the gas. Nobody wants a 2 liter of wine to explode in their closet. Worse case scenario, you have fizzy “sparkling wine” because the fermentation in the bottle carbonated the wine. I’ve accidentally made that a time or two and I can say it was one of the tastiest mistakes I’ve ever made.

Bentonite Bentonite isn’t 100% necessary for home brewing but it will do a great deal to clear your wine and thus improve flavor. I highly recommend using it and I use it in every batch of wine I make. You’d be suprised how much clearing the wine will improve flavor and even smells.

How to use Bentonite – Use 2-3 tsp (teaspoon, not tablespoon) per cup of boiling water per gallon you’re trying to clear. If you’re clearing 5 gallons that’s 5 cups of boiling water and 10-15 tsp bentonite. Add the bentonite very slowly to the boiling water and whisk it in like mad to encourage dissolving. You really have to agitate it to get it to dissolve and even with much effort you’ll still be left with some sludge. Pour the bentonite into your wine (making sure you have enough room in the fermenter) and stir well. The bentonite solution needs to be distributed into the wine, but you don’t want to disturb any of the sludge already on the bottom of the fermentor any more than necessary. Some bentonite sludge will be left in the bottom of your cup/mixing bowl. that’s ok. Just throw it away.

When & How Long? – Use bentonite after fermentation is done. If you’re going to bottle add it before bottling and before adding sorbate. If you’re using my freezing method to stop fermentation then use bentonite AFTER the freezing and thawing process. You should at LEAST wait overnight for the bentonite to do it’s thing, but I recommend 3 days. In either case, at no point is your wine un-safe. Bentonite is an inert clay.


Video Tutorials

The videos aren’t working at the moment. Some kind of issue with Youtube copyright I think (I own/made the videos)… i’m working on getting it sorted out.


Below is a collection of all of the videos I’ve made dealing with homebrewing (at least those with helpful information). I will keep this page updated, but you’re also welcome to subscribe to my youtube channel.Before you jump into the videos below, remember there’s lots to see on this site.

Super Simple Winemaking: Description: Just what it says, a super simple and cheap method to make homebrew wine. No investment in a homebrew kit needed. You just need a condom, the yeast and a sugary drink. Here is a link to the yeast I recommend in the video below. It’s very cheap and my cloning video below shows you how to clone the yeast so you never have to order again.

Super Simple Winemaking II Description: Follow up on the first video and talk about sterilization. We also start another batch of wine and talk about an upcoming online brewing course. Unfortunately you’ll probably want to actually order a good sanitizer solution if you don’t want to take the time to boil everything (pain in the ass). Don’t use bleach! This stuff is pretty cheap though and it goes a LONG way!

Clearing Your Wine Description: Learn how to clear your wine to improve taste, texture and generally make a better quality product. I strongly recommend using Bentonite. It’s very cheap and a little bit goes a long way. A 3 oz bag is under $2.00 and will easily clear 50 gallons of wine.

Yeast need culture – cloning yeast Description: How to clone yeast so you don’t have to buy it over and over again. For a beer yeast you’ll need to look look into what type of beer you want to make. There are various strains available.

Advanced Home Wine Making

Volume 1 Description: An introduction to the chemicals and essential equipment used in home wine making. All of the stuff in this video can be ordered easily online with very cheap shipping. I highly recommend using the online shop for High Gravity over the one I recommended in the video. Their online shop works better and shipping is cheaper.

How to use a hydrometer Description: How to use a hydrometer to measure your sugar and alcohol level. I also recommend picking up a wine thief (not shown in the video) to help you use the hydrometer. It makes sampling and testing your wine much easier.

Super Simple Beer: Description: The video below shows step-by-step instructions on how to mix your first batch of beer. I take a lot of pride in being able to simplify the process to make home brewing easily understood by someone who’s never done it before.

Merddyn’s OMG Honey Wheat Beer (Wheat Braggot) – See what happens when a beer recipe goes wonderfuly wrong. This started out to be a wheat beer with a bit of honey and morphed into a mead with a little wheat extract. It’s not going to turn out like I had planned, but at least you learn how to boil hops and steep grains.

TMB Dunkelweisen (dark wheat beer) – This is a partial extract beer recipe I developed with a buddy of mine in my homebrewing club (mashtronauts). I have the recipe available in BeerXML format (readable with Beersmith) for free.

Beer Bottling and Forced Carbonation (in 2-liters) – This video shows bottling the Dunkelweisen (dark wheat) beer in 2 liters. Also, check out Drysdale’s video on how to make your own Carb Cap.

Herbal / Medicinal Brewing Videos:

Intro to Herbal Brewing – This is part one of a more advanced series of home brewing videos focused on bridging the gap between brewing recreationally and for more useful purposes such as natural health, healing and medicine. Specifically in this video I demonstrate how to make a tincture, which is a liquid concentrate containing the medicinal properties of an herb. This concentration technique can be used both for medicinal purposes and simply for adding flavor to a brew. Links discussed in this video are Mountain Rose Herbs and a couple ofreally good herbal books.


Making Stevia Extract – Stevia is a natural sweetener with 0 calories that is un-fermentable and does not provoke an insulin response for diabetics. It can be boiled or steeped in leaf form to sweeten teas, beverages and in cooking. Commercial liquid extracts are available (highly potent) through stores like GNC. Powdered single-serving packets can usually be found in supermarkets next to the Splenda or in the tea/powdered drink isle. Links discussed in this video are Mountain Rose Herbs and a couple of really good herbal books.

Bottling Stevia Extract – This video shows how to separate your herbal tinctures once the vodka has extracted all of the water and alcohol soluble compounds. Links discussed in this video are Mountain Rose Herbs and a couple of really good herbal books.