Homebrewing Kit Buyer’s Guide

Home brewing starter kitGetting started in homebrewing should not be intimidating. E. C. Kraus makes the initial leap much easier by including nearly everything you need for your first batch in one homebrewing kit.

Our Steam Freak Beermaking Starter Kit includes:

  • Complete Joy of Homebrewing – This book is the original homebrewer’s guidebook. It will guide you through your first few batches and well beyond into your homebrewing career.
  • 6 Gallon Screw-Top Fermenter – This is what the beer ferments in for a week or so before moving to the secondary fermentation carboy. The fermenter comes with an airlock, stopper, and faucet. It can also be used as a bottling bucket.
  • 5 Gallon Plastic Carboy – After about ten days in primary fermentation, the beer is moved to the carboy for further conditioning and flavor development. The carboy also comes with an airlock, stopper, and faucet.
  • Triple Scale Hydrometer – This tool is used to measure the gravity of your homebrew, and those measurements are used to determine alcohol content. Learn more about working with your hydrometer in this blog post.
  • 21″ Curved Racking Cane – The racking cane, along with a section of vinyl hose, helps you transfer, or rack, the beer from one fermenter to another.
  • 6′ Length of 3/8″ Vinyl Hose – Attach the hose to the racking cane to complete your racking setup.
  • Double Lever Capper – Used to cap bottles.
  • Beer Bottle Brush – Used for cleaning bottles.
  • Racking Cane Clip – This clip secures the racking cane to the bucket to faciliate racking procedures.
  • 8″ Floating Thermometer – A thermometer can be used in the home brewery in a number of ways, in particular, measuring mash temperature.
  • Basic A No Rinse Cleanser – A brewery-grade cleaning agents used to clean all of your homebrewing gear.
  • 24″ Stirring Spoon – Used to stir and aerate the wort before pitching yeast
  • Steam Freak Kit – Unlike other homebrewing starter kits, our kit includes a Steam Freak recipe kit of your choice, including bottle caps. So the tough question is this: What beer style will you make with your first batch?

In addition to the Beermaking Starter Kit, you will also need a brew kettle. The 20-qt. Brew Kettle is ideal for brewing indoors, but many homebrewers will eventually upgrade to a larger kettle (see below).

 

Suggested Equipment Upgrades

Once you’ve brewed your first batch or two, you might be willing to make a few upgrades to your home brewery. Some of the most popular steps forward on the equipment side include:Shop Carboys

  • Auto-siphon – This nifty device makes siphoning from one fermenter to another a breeze.
  • Temperature controller – After you brew a few batches of beer, you’ll soon discover that fermentation temperature control is a very important part of brewing good beer. If you have a spare freezer or refrigerator, a temperature controller will allow you to control your fermentation temperature to the degree.
  • Additional Fermenters – Once you’re hooked on homebrewing, additional fermentation capacity will definitely come in handy.
  • Mash tun cooler – If you’re interested in making the jump to all-grain brewing, you’re going to need a mash tun. A mash tun cooler is a simple, affordable way to mash the grains before the boil. (On a tight budget? The Brew In a Bag method is a wallet-friendly alternative.)
  • Stir plate – Yeast health is a crucial part of brewing good beer. This includes making sure that you have a healthy colony of yeast large enough to ferment your beer. A stir plate stirs the yeast in your yeast starter, giving it plenty of oxygen in order to grow to the right size.
  • Keg system – Your own homebrew on tap? Now we’re talking! The ultimate upgrade for homebrewers is to move from bottling to kegging their beer. In addition to saving a ton of time and effort, homebrew draft systems just have this “cool” factor that can’t be beat.

What piece of equipment is on your home brewery wish list?

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David Ackley is a beer writer, brewer, and self-described “craft beer crusader.” He holds a General Certificate in Brewing from the Institute of Brewing and Distilling and is founder and editor of the Local Beer Blog.

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