Homebrewing class announcement!

By Potter · Jan 5, 2012 · ·
  1. Potter
    I've just finished all my course work for my degree in horticulture and viticulture! I'm now in the process of bringing my education to you. Starting this weekend I will be posting a series of lessons on making high quality alcohol from start to finish. It really isn't hard to do at all and I can show you how to get started for cheap. Once you have a few batches underway, you'll find opportunities to improve your equipment, operation, and eventually start to explore more exotic paths. I've got cross over projects running in quite a few fields of interest unfolding and starting to bring back positive results.

    And I want you to be able to do the same. There is no reason for anyone who can spend three to four hours a week in the kitchen with a few friends, and maybe some time outside. We're not talking prison hooch, but fine ciders, wines, meads, beers, spirits, and potions. A bit of practice and you'll never drink mass market swill again.

    So I got a call yesterday from a friend who has a severe need to brew cider RIGHT NOW, and is going to get my prohibition era wine press rebuilt so he can get apples this weekend. I'm so excited, he's covering the whole thing! My wine teacher gave me a gorgeus fruit mill, so I'm well under way to my own cider line. This also means I can document how we are taking a ruined press I got from a basement for free and make it useable.

    Going over picking appropriate projects for your climate, getting supplies together, what is really important and what's not, how to fix flaws, preparing to serve. Yeasts and acids and how to analyze juice and pick the yeasts and admixtures. Aging, oak and other flavoring agents.

    I've also got a whole LOT of slideshows on wines, I mean like an entire wine and viticulture curriculum worth from school. At the end of the month I'm attending an organic hops proeduction workshop too. Growing grain is easy, it doesn't take a more then 10-20 feet of row and a single hops plant to grow a 5 gallon batch of beer and lots of tasty hops. With luck I can talk my brewing friend to document his stuff. Come spring I will hopefully be working at a vineyard and doing other fruit care. We have an expanding urban hops production project going on and will show you how to handle them.

    In the mean time, get some wine jugs with caps, say garbage night in recycling bins, get them cleaned out, and fitted with well sealed, water air-locks*. If you feel ambitions, water cooler jugs are good too, but I prefer people start with 2-3 separate gallon batches, less investment lost if it goes bad and more practice with the higher turn over rate. Also cuts out bottling and storage. Pick up a few pounds of sugar and when we get started, a jug of unfiltered apple juice (cider in the US). Come down to the Alcohol forum this weekend and I'll be posting as we go. Then after that I'll need to do some uploading and compilation of the next lessons.

    You'll be celebrating the Equinox with a home-made cider you'll proudly share with your friends. And if not, hopefully I can help you make some fine cooking vinegar you could sell to a restaurant, because I'm headed off to the library to learn that right now, got 5 gallons each of apple and pear vinegar that I'm going to oak and age for a while, sell it in a few years ;-)

    See y'all this weekend!

    *look in the cheap booze thread for a description, NO balloons or cellophane, unless you are in prison, they are not worth it. poke around on youtube for film canister airlock until I get to that.

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  1. Gradient
    I'll definitely be keeping an eye out. Thanks for sharing this with us! Can't wait until I can make some of my own beverages. Did you learn anything about legalities of making liquors vs. beers/wines? I've heard that it's federally OK (in the U.S.) to make beers and wines, but harder liquors require some kind of licensing?
  2. Mick Mouse
    Looking forward to this as well, especially the Mead, which I know you excel at!
  3. coolhandluke
    that sounds excellent potter. ive recently begun to enjoy wine, and would love to try brewing some of my own. looking forward to your information.
  4. veritas.socal
    i cant wait to hear what ya got for us...congrats on finishing classes. found out i have access to a still, a zillion tons of blackberries, and a whole summer.
    thanks bro
  5. Potter
    Things are coming along. The first project never panned out, don't know what happened to the guy, but I've got some things that should be up early next week when I get back from the farm conference
  6. ImALumberjackAndImOK
    Thanks for taking the initiative to put this together, Potter! It seems like your audience is going to have a wide variety of interests, so it will be really exciting to have both the centralizing conversation around the basic fermentation process, as well as lots of little conversations, hopefully, around the particulars associated with different ferments.

    I've got experience with brewing beer and would like to consider cider, mead, and wine, as well as exploring the other herbal additions that modify the effects of these beverages.
  7. ImALumberjackAndImOK
    Also, I didn't think to offer this before, as I felt too humble, but I would be happy to contribute my knowledge about beer-brewing. It seems like you focus on non-beer ferments, so I just thought that I'd throw it out there, in case you would be looking for some assistance in a specific area...

    It does seem like you probably are more of an expert in the area as a whole than I, but I could try to help out with some of the leg-work. Feel free to PM me.
  8. Potter
    I tried, alas my camera failed and I was unable to produce quality photos that were of any use.
  9. ImALumberjackAndImOK
    I've actually never posted a picture to the site, but would be happy to take and post pictures of my beermaking set-up. I was going to brew today anyway... Would you like me to send you the pictures to use in your slideshow?
  10. garda_charas
    Please continue the lessons and do not kill us with suspense:cry:
  11. Cwb20022
    Hey potter. Did you ever create the thread you talk about? Id be very interested in taking a look at it.

  12. trdofbeingtrd
    You piqued my intrest.
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