You’ve got your all grain brewing equipment together, and you’re ready to make that seminal batch. It’s going to take longer than an extract beer, but you’ll probably be surprised how easy it is. So the first thing you need to do is decide what to brew. Pale ale is a good choice for a first batch; my first all grain brew was an English IPA, and you can find the recipe right here. If you want to keep things simple, MoreBeer! has some all grain ingredient kits, those can be a great way to start. Of course you can also feel free to browse the web and find a recipe you’d like to try. As you’re searching, keep the size of your mash tun in mind. If it is 5 gallons, you’ll be able to mash up to about 12 pounds of grain, using 1.25 quarts of water per pound. Also, be sure that you buy your grain pre-milled unless you have a grain mill (a great investment in the future, by the way, as it allows you to buy grain by the sack and save quite a bit of money).
Part 2 of the All Grain Brewery article is still in the works. I should have it up in the next couple days. In the meantime, however, I wanted to talk about my favorite home brew shop. I’ve been buying equipment and ingredients from these guys since the late ‘90s, mostly ordering online initially when my local shop didn’t have what I needed. But eventually the owners of my then-local home brew shop (a franchise called The Home Brewery) decided to retire and sell their store, and I was fortunate enough to see it purchased by Beer Beer & More Beer! They’ve since shortened their name to MoreBeer, but they are the same great store. Their ingredients are top quality and always fresh, and they carry some top-of-the-line equipment. Their “Brew Sculptures” are well known and frequently copied. You can tell they truly have a passion for the hobby.
While I’m a definite believer in supporting your local shop, if you either don’t have a local home brew store, or your local shop isn’t up to your standards, I hope you’ll support these guys by clicking here. Cheers!