Karps Homebrew Basic Kit Instructions
Karp's Famous Beer Kits are made of the finest all-natural ingredients, carefully selected to produce the finest quality beer. Each kit makes five gallons. We are certain you will be very pleased with the homebrew you are about to make.
You will need a home-brewing equipment kit designed for five gallon batches, plus a large pot with at least two and a half gallons capacity. On bottling day you should have 48-52 twelve ounce beer bottles, or 26-30 twenty two ounce beer bottles.
Prior to brewing day you may wish to make a yeast starter, or incubate a package of liquid yeast. Ask us for help or advice with this step if you are new to homebrewing. Before brew day you can also fill a number of plastic bags with water and place them in your freezer. You will need alot of ice to chill your hot wort after boiling. If this is your first homebrew experience read the small TRUE BREW handbook to get familiar with the equipment.
On brewing day you will start by cracking your specialty grains. [Most, not all kits come with specialty grains.] Place the grains inside a large ziplock bag, crack the grains on a cutting board using a rolling pin or wine bottle. Don't overcrush, just crunch the grains a little. Transfer the crushed grains into the supplied muslin grain bag. Knot the bag to close. We can crush your grain for you, but it's fun to do it yourself.
In your large brewpot heat at least one and a half gallons of water to a boil. Drop the bag of cracked grains into the brew water while it's heating. Steep the grains in the pot for 15 minutes or until the water begins to boil. Most brewers do not boil their grains. Fish the grain bag out of the pot with a clean slotted spoon. You can compost the spent grains bag and all.
While you're heating the brew water to a boil, you can sanitize your fermenter and racking equipment. Sanitize everything that comes in contact with your wort, being especialy careful with your fermenter and lid, airlock, thermometer, and the outside of packet the yeast comes in.
This checklist will help keep you organized as you brew your beer.
___1. Prepare to brew as follows: Put 1-1/2 to 2 gallons of water in your brewpot, and place it on your stove at high heat. If your kit comes with crushed grains of barley, now is the time to take them out of the plastic bag and place them in a muslin grain bag, tie the bag closed and place the grains in the brewing water. Later, when the water begins to boil, you'll remove the bag of grains and throw it away.
Now, half-fill a saucepan with hot tap water and put it in your sink. Peel the label off the can[s] of malt extract and place it [them] in the saucepan to soften the malt before you open the can.
___2. When the water begins to boil, remove and discard the grain bag, open the can(s) of malt, turn the heat down under the brewpot, pour the malt into the pot and stir constantly until dissolved. Add a little hot tap water into the can to get out most of the malt. Bring back to a boil. Lower the heat again and add the powdered malt [if any] and the bittering hops. Return to boil but watch the pot carefully; it will try to boil over. Boil this mixture [now called wort] for at least 45 minutes. Porters and stouts boil at least one hour.
While the water is boiling, you can sanitize everything that comes in contact with your finished wort. The fermenter bucket, the lid, and the airlock need to be very clean.
___3. Thirty minutes before the boil is finished, boil two cups of water in a small pan for five minutes and set aside to cool.
___4. Add your aroma hops to the wort five minutes before the boil is complete.
___5. When the boiling time is almost over, open the yeast package with a sanitized knife or very clean hands and add the yeast to the small pan of preboiled warm water [this water should no longer be hot to the touch, about 90 deg F.]. Leave the pan on the stovetop, since you will need it soon.
___6. Prepare to chill your hot wort by 1/2 filling the sink with cold water and plenty of ice. When boiling is complete place the covered brewpot in the ice water-no splashing-for twenty minutes. Stir the water around with your hands every few minutes. Add more ice when necessary. Stir the wort with your sanitized spoon a few times. When your wort is 80 degrees or less remove the brewpot from the sink and wipe the outside dry.
___7. Fill your plastic fermenting bucket with two gallons cold tap water. Add the chilled wort, leaving behind the solid stuff on the bottom of the brewpot. Add more cold tap water to make five gallons. [Your bucket is marked]. Stir very vigorously for a minute to aerate your wort.
___8. Pour the yeast and water into the wort. Let stand 5 minutes. Stir gently one more time. Cover the bucket very tightly. Fill the airlock half way with vodka or gin. Lubricate the bottom of the airlock with a drop of cheap vodka and push it in the grommeted hole. You just made beer! Store the bucket at constant cool room temp. for 8-10 days. [65-70 deg F.} Then bottle as described in your handbook.
These instructions are designed as a springboard for your new hobby, and are not the only way to make beer. We hope you have so much fun doing this that you will want to try something new every time you make more homebrew. Please share your successful recipes with us and we'll pass them on to others!
Keep a log of your brewing.
Call (631-261-1235) or E-Mail Alan (firstname.lastname@example.org) at Karp's Homebrew with any questions or comments.