4 Tips to Become an Expert Homebrew

We thought we would share our best advice or tips to help make you an expert homebrewer. These are not secrets by any means but are simple tips that can help you brew good beer and maybe a good refresher for the seasoned homebrewer.

Chase Flavor Not ABV

Many new brewers are looking to get "bang for their buck" and frequently look for ways to increase their brews ABV. After searching the web for ways to do so, many people think adding sugar to their batch will increase the ABV.

While this is true, there are several other factors to keep in mind when homebrewing: different sugar types can introduce different flavors that will affect your beer's overall color, flavor, and body. That is why we recommend chasing flavor and not ABV. Find what flavors you enjoy drinking and go from there.

If you want to brew high ABV beers check out some of our recipes, we have several across different styles that will hit that 8.5% and up range. These have been designed to balance the flavor and make a good beer, not something that tastes terrible but just has a high ABV.

Different Brews Require Different Fermenting & Conditioning Times

While brewing the Mr. Beer Refills this will not change that much. Although we have several different styles they are all around the same ABV and use the same yeast. So for Refills, we suggest 10-14 days to ferment and then 14 days to carbonate in the bottle at room temperature. Any time over that is good for conditioning any off-flavors that you may have.

Now when getting into brewing recipes you will want to make sure you pay attention to the instructions. Depending on what style of beer you are brewing or the ABV of that beer, the fermentation times will be different. They range anywhere from 14-21 days.

A few good rules to keep in mind here, we recommend bottling your beer before you hit that 24-day mark. When you let your beer condition so leaving your bottles out at room temperature past the initial 14 days, hop flavor and bitterness will start to dissipate. So keep that in mind for those hoppy beers.

Patience is a Virtue

This has to be one of the hardest things for new homebrewers, which is just waiting for your beer to ferment or carbonate in the bottles. For me it is still something that drives me crazy, I just hate waiting to try something new. If you rush things when it comes to brewing, then most of the time it's going to have a negative impact on your beer.

Rushing through the brewing steps or the fermentation process can lead to off-flavors in your beer or even create a bad enough infection where it is undrinkable. So be patient when brewing and make sure you have some beer stocked up whether it's homebrews or craft beer. The worst thing for a homebrewer is to be brewing an amazing beer, but not having any beer to enjoy during the process.

Seek Out Help

I have found that homebrewers love to share their knowledge, so don’t be afraid to ask questions. You can’t know it all from the get-go, and the best way to learn is to ask. I have been working at Mr. Beer for 8 years but I still have a ton of brewing questions that I ask our brewmasters especially about more advanced brewing topics.

So if you don’t know something or are unsure, just ask!