If you watch TV ads, you might assume that all beer comes from big breweries. For a long time that was true, but toward the end of the 20th century, a new wave emerged. Beer enthusiasts decided they could do better. Some created small breweries, and others began preparing batches for themselves and friends at home.
With plenty of available expert advice along with inexpensive brewing equipment, DIY beer keeps getting easier to produce. Here are five reasons you should jump on the bandwagon and start brewing your own beer.
1. You Can Save Money
Sure, there’s a start-up cost, but it’s less than you might think. A beginner’s home brewing kit can be had for under $100. Buying the ingredients may make your first batch seem costly, but you get to keep using those ingredients for many iterations.
Once you’re up and running, the expense can be under 70 cents a beer. That’s less than the cost of name-brand beers and far less than the craft beers that are more comparable to a good homemade product.
Most enthusiasts, though, don’t brew at home primarily to save money. Read on for other reasons.
2. You Can Brew the Beer You Really Want
Any old lager will quench your thirst after you cut the grass, but there are times you want some beer with distinctive taste and complexity. Whether you prefer a wheat beer, a stout or one of the myriad varieties of IPA, your choice is always on tap when you make your own. If you’d like a beer with cucumber, jalapeno or papaya, you can infuse your version with as much or as little of the flavor as suits you.
3. You Become Part of a Community
Home brewers are passionate about their hobby. They love to brew beer, drink it, compare it and talk about it. You’ll find yourself initiated into a friendly society that’s always ready to welcome a new member.
They’re happy to answer questions, offer opinions and share their latest tips on equipment, techniques or ingredients. You’ll find them discussing the ins and outs of their hobby in live groups, on social media and at conventions.
4. Making Beer Is Fun
It’s easy to get started. You can work at it as hard as you want: stick to the standard recipes or challenge yourself to excel and even win contests. It’s a great way to spend time alone, and it can be even more fun with a like-minded friend or two.
You get to learn a little science and be creative. You play with interesting toys such as thermometers, tubes and brewpots. When the brew finally goes into the bottle, you can step back and bask in the pride of what you’ve accomplished.
5. You’ll Enjoy Sharing Your Wares
Anybody can pick up a six-pack on the way to a party, but it makes a bigger splash when you bring a few bottles of your latest creation. Homebrew is an appreciated gift for Christmas and birthdays. Who knows, your friends might like your product so much that they join you in the hobby.