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Slow down Hank, let’s take home brewing easy

By Steve Croyle
Self-proclaimed Beer Aficionado

So you’re thinking about taking a stab at this brewing thing. Seems easy enough. You know people who brew, and all these craft brewers started off home brewing. You can do it, plus, you will save tons of money drinking your own beer.

Hold on there, Agent Hank Schrader.

While brewing is a simple concept, home brewing can be a rather expensive hobby, especially if you start with those little “brewery in a box” kits you see in some stores. Those extract-based brew kits are to brewing as Betty Crocker cake mixes are to baking. They’re fun enough, but they just don’t give you the real brewing experience.

The best way to go is to find some experienced home brewers. Brew clubs like Westgate Brews and Scioto Olentangy Darby Zymurgists (SODZ) will eagerly welcome you into their midst, and you’ll be able to gain some home brew experience before you purchase any equipment. These people can give you plenty of advice, saving you time, money, and heartache. Shadowing experienced brewers will help you dispel any myths you might subscribe to. As you move forward, you will be able to build the brewing operation that suits you rather than go through years of trial and error. You might even find that this hobby isn’t for you, saving yourself the hassle of trying to sell all that dusty brewing equipment on Craiglist.

You can also hone your skills by heading over to North High Brewing and signing up to brew a batch or two under a professional brewer’s supervision. This will help you build up some confidence in creating your own recipes, and establish sound brewing practices so you can avoid making costly mistakes when you start brewing on your own.

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