Ask somebody how to homebrew and they'll probably say, “Get a kit.” If only it were that easy. After a quick Google search you'll soon be asking yourself a dozen questions:
“Where's the best place to buy from? Why are these kits all different prices? Which ones will make the best beer?”
The homebrewing market is flooded with all different types of kits from hundreds of companies. You just want to make great beer – not wade though confusing kit descriptions, crossing your fingers in hopes that you picked the right one.
Never fear: Below are homebrew kit reviews from popular suppliers along with our top picks.
|Vendor||Not Included||Fermentor||Shipping||Kit Price|
|MoreBeer||Bottles||6 gal Plastic Carboy||Free||$129.99|
|HomebrewSupply||Bottles, Ingredients||5 gal glass carboy, 6.5 gal bucket||7.99 Flat rate||$134.96|
|Austin Homebrew||Kettle, Bottles, Ingredients||7.9 gal bucket + 5 gal glass carboy||Variable||$138.99|
How do you use the kit?
To be blunt, the instructions that come with kits usually stink. The vendors specialize in equipment, not in teaching homebrewing.
After my own rocky start to homebrewing and seeing other new brewers struggle, I created a video-based online course called Batch 1 and Beyond which is makes it as easy as possible to break into homebrewing and have success on your very first batch.
The other item that you will need is an ingredient kit. As a beginner, you should start with a malt extract kit with specialty grains. Here are the links to that type of ingredient kit from the vendors above:
As mentioned in the table, the equipment kits do not come with a kettle or beer bottles. Commercial beer bottles can be reused for homebrewing, so it is best to start saving them if you plan on homebrewing soon. Make sure they are the pop off type ( not screw off), and wash them thoroughly after consumption. Finally, you may already have a suitable pot or can pick one up locally at a kitchen supply store or Wal-Mart. A 5 gallon (20 quart) or larger pot will work fine as a kettle.