After using more than a dozen different thermometers in homebrewing, I've found my favorite. Actually it's not a single thermometer, but a combination of a digital meter and thermocouple. Many companies make these products, but I've found the products by Thermoworks to be perfect for homebrewing.
I got fed up with inaccurate thermometers or ones that easily break. It was always a risky venture climbing to the top of my ladder and reaching down into the HLT on top of my 3-tier to get a reading. Mash and fermentation temps are especially important and a faulty thermometer can give you a whole different beer.
For these reasons I spent the extra money on the Therma-K. It serves literally all of my temperature needs. If you have one of these and the long wire probe, you don't even need to drill thermometer holes in your kettle.
Here are the products I mention in the video:
- Therma K (221-041) – This is the handheld meter that accepts any k-type thermocouple. As of publishing, it comes with the wire+penetration probe in the video (313-158).
- Heavy Duty Wire Probe (113-373-T) – Extremely useful in homebrewing. I have the 6.5′ version which allows me to put the probe in my hot liquor tank, mash tun, or chest freezer for fermenting and read the temperature from a long distance.
- Fast Response Penetration Probe (113-159) – This is the same probe that's on the Thermapen. It's very useful for cooking in addition to brewing.
Let me know if you've tried any of these products and what you think.