Thursday, April 5, 2012

How Fast can you Brew?

Everyone has varying levels of busyness and chaos in their lives.  Homebrewing is supposed to be a relaxing time for us in the hobby to take a step away from that chaos and enjoy life.  Unfortunately, not everyone can dedicate 5, or 6 or more hours to brewing.  Some of us can only brew once a month, some every week, but more often than not I think we all agree we don't have as much time as we want to brew.  

Brew Your Own magazine just had an article on the very topic of this post which is titled "Speed up your All-Grain Brew Day."  It suggested a lot of helpful tips to speed up your brewday as well as timeline of when things should be completed/started.  The goal of the article was to finish a brew with cleanup in under 4 hours - allowing some people the possibility of brewing on a weeknight after work!  A lot of the time savings was due to staying busy at all times during the brewday.  If you are organized, you can be setting things up and cleaning things out while liquid is coming up to temps, or while waiting for a mash.  The key is always to be thinking, "what can I be doing."

I have found that pre-weighing out the grans for a recipe, and measuring out strike-water the night or a few days before brew day saves a bunch of time.  Being able to roll out of bed and turn on my burner that is already setup up saves me a good 20-30 mins in a brewday.  Weighing hop additions during the mash and labeling them avoids rushing during the boil.  Cleaning the mash tun during the boil is also a time saver.  Being on top of my game I can finish a beer in about 4.5 hours or so.  I will say that sometimes having more time to brew can be nice and relaxing in itself, so I don't always recommend speed brewing.  Remember to RDWHAHB!

There are a lot of other time savers, so be sure to leave a comment with your favorite brew day time saver!


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