Brewpub Heaven

Everyone knows that if your looking for the best in

coffee, you go to Seattle. For wine, you go to

California. When it comes to the best in beer, you

go to Portland Oregon, where your never more than

15 minutes away from a quality brewpub.

The Williamette Rive in western Oregon has been

the center of hop growing and brewing since the

days of the pioneers. When the microbrew revolution

began, the history and the hops were already there,

along with the spring water, the grain, and the

fruit for summer beers. As a result, regional

brewers and microbrewers began to pop up all over

the place.

After that, it didn't take long at all for the

brewpub to follow. These beers weren't just for

washing down food anymore. The hand crafted beers

could be used in cooking, just like wine. In

the brewpubs of Portland, the beer also forms a

base for salad dressing, spices up marinades, and

even helps to sweeten the desserts as well.

Many brewpubs will offer a sampler of the best

in beer tasting. You can think of it as wine tasting

without the snooty steward. You sip on small

amounts of a variety of brews to see what the

brewer can do, from the light and hoppy to the

dark yet sweet brews.

What to expect

1. Good head on the beer. Good head

ensures that you'll get a strong smell of the

brew, so be sure to pour it into your glass very


2. Always use a glass. You should always

use a clean glass, a very clean glass. In most

brewing establishments, the glasses are always hand

washed and air dried to ensure that there isn't a

speck of grease in the glass to deflate the head

and leave soapy looking bubbles behind.

3. The English are right. As the English

know, refrigerated beer is too cold to fully

appreciate the taste. In brewpubs, the beer is

served at temperatures that are cool but not that

cold. The iced and chilled glasses are saved for


4. Vocabulary. Beer has a mouth feel,

which describes the body of the brew - light,

medium, and full. The color can be misleading,

as even light bodied beers can be full bodied.

Anytime you are looking for the best in microbrews,

you can count on Oregon to deliver the best in

beer. There are hundreds of brewpubs here, with

everything you could ever want. Anytime you

are in the area, don't hesitate to stop off and

see why the microbrews here are easily among the

best in the United States - or the world for

that matter.


Methods Of Microbrewing

The first thing you'll need to do when brewing is

to sanitize everything that will come in contact

with your unfermented beer. It will take time

for the sanitizer to do its job, so don't rush


Next, you'll need to rinse everything to remove

any remaining sanitizer. Any remaining sanitizer

can kill of your yeast if you don't rinse things

well. Add 3 1/2 gallons of water to your

fermenter then seal it with the fermenter's lid

or a rubber stopper. This should be done as

soon as you can before you begin to cook the



Add 2 gallons of cold water to the pot and bring

it to a boil. Once the water has started to boil,

add your malt syrup or extract kit. Always watch

your pot boil and never leave it. Stir it well,

until the extract has dissolved.

Boiling over can create a mess and cause you to

loose precious ingredients. Malt doesn't boil

like water, as it comes to a boil the liquid will

expand and foam over the top. Stir constantly

and keep a close watch to avoid boiling over.

Add a few tablespoons of your boiling wort to

1 cup of cool water in a santized container,

making sure the temperature isn't too high.

Next, add your yeast packet and cover the

container with a saucer or lid.

Pitching yeast

After the wort has finished boiling, allow the

mixture time to cool to 70 - 80 degrees then

pitch the yeast into your fermenter, which you

already have filled to 2/3 of the desired

final level with cold water.

These are the basic steps for brewing your

own microbrews. You'll also have to siphon,

bottle, then pour your brew. The final steps

aren't that difficult, although they do

require a certain level of precision. If

this is your first time brewing, you should

watch someone experienced first.

With microbrewing, there are many different

methods, including fruit. Fruit is unlike

other types of microbrews, as the method

introduces fruit into the equation and makes

for a very unique - yet interesting taste.

When brewing your own beers, you can use

any method you prefer. Some are harder than

others, although a little bit of time is all

you need to become a pro. Once you have been

brewing for a while, you'll be able to

brew even the most exotic of microbrews - all

it takes is time and dedication.


The Brewing Process

Brewing is the actual process of alcoholic beverages

and alcohol through fermentation. This method is

used with beer production, although the term can

also be used for other drinks as well. The term

brewing is also used to refer to any chemical

mixing process as well.

The process of brewing has a long history indeed,

which archeological evidence tells us that this

technique was actually used in ancient Egypt as

well. Many descriptions of various beer recipes

can be found in Sumerian writings, which are

some of the oldest writings of any type.

Even though the process of brewing is complex and

varies greatly, Below, you'll find the basic

stages relating to brewing.

1. Mashing - This is the first phase of brewing,

in which the malted grains are crushed and soaked

in warm water in order to create an extract of the

malt. The mash is then held at constant

temperature long enough for the enzymes to convert

starches into fermentable sugar.

2. Sparging - At this stage, water is

filtered through the mash to dissolve all of the

sugars. The darker, sugar heavy liquid is known

as the wort.

3. Boiling - The wort is boiled along

with any remaining ingredients to remove any excess

water and kill any type of microorganisms. The

hops, either whole or extract are added at some

point during this stage.

4. Fermentation - The yeast is now added

and the beer is left to ferment. After it has

fermented, the beer may be allowed to ferment again,

which will allow further settling of the yeast and

other particulate matter which may have been introduced

earlier in the process.

5. Packaging - At the final stage, the

beer will contain alcohol, but not too much carbon

dioxide. The brewer will have a few options to

increase the levels of carbon dioxide. The most

common approach is force carbonation, via the direct

addition of CO2 gas to the keg or bottle.

After it has been brewed, the beer in normally a

finished product. At this point, the beer is

kegged, casked, bottled, or canned. Beers that

are unfiltered may be stored for further fermentation

in conditioning tanks, casks, or bottles to allow

smoothing of harsh alcohol or heavy hops.

There are some beer enthusiasts that consider a

long conditioning period attractive for various

strong beers such as Barley and wines. Depending on

the beer enthusiast and what he likes to drink,

it will vary.


Hybrid Microbrews

Cream ale/American lager/blonde ale

This blend produces a mild, pale, light bodied ale.

This can be made using a warm fermentation (either

top or bottom) and cold lagering or also by

blending top and bottom fermented beers.

The hop bitterness in the style is normally very

low, with hip aroma often absent. Sometimes they

are referred to as cream ales, yet they are crisp

and very refreshing.

American wheat ale/American wheat lager

This type of beer can be made by using either lager

yeast or an ale. Brewed with 50 percent wheat,

the hop rates are higher and the carbonation is

lower than German styles of wheat beers.

At low levels, a fruity estery aroma and flavor

is normal, although clovelike characteristics

shouldn't be perceived. The color is normally

golden to light amber, with the body being light

to medium in character.

Fruit beers

These types of beers are made by using fruit as

an adjunct in the primary or secondary fermentation.

Fruit beers provide a very unique taste, and

they can also be quite potent if made in the right


Vegetable beers

These beers use vegetables as an adjunct in primary

or secondary fermentation, helping to provide an

obvious, yet harmonious quality. These beers

shouldn't be overpowered by hop character.

Herb and spice beers

Herb and spice beers use either herbs or spices

other than hops to create a very distinct taste

and character. The spices can be derived from roots,

seeds, fruits, vegetables, and flowers.

Hybrid microbrews offer you a break from the

ordinary beers, providing unique tastes and very

distinct character. There are many types of hybrid

microbrews available, all you have to do is look

around or experiment.


Discovering Microbrews

Brewed on every continent around the world and

enjoyed in every nation, beer can quench every type

of thirst and go down as easily as spring water

to thick, heady concoctions that resemble that of

the thickest oatmeal.

Just as the gourmet blends have conquered a large

portion of the coffee business, handcrafted brews

continue to keep a firm hold on the most serious

of beer drinkers. There are hundreds of thousands

of brews out there, which are sure to please even

the hardest to please.

When it comes to the gourmet types of microbrews,

there are some things to keep in mind. If you

are new to microbrews and gourmet types, you'll

find the tips below to be very beneficial.

Start light

When you go to a pub or just out to drink, you

should start off light with a basic lager, pilsner,

or wheat beer. After that, you can work your way

towards the full flavored beers, such as porters

and Oktoberfest beers. These can be very potent,

especially for those who don't really drink that


Starting light is also good for your overall

tolerance, as drinking light will prepare you for

the more potent drinks. This way, you can enjoy

plenty of microbrews without having to worry

about stopping too early.


The ideal way to try new types of beer is to pay

a visit to a local brewpub. Many of these small

brewery/restaurants will offer samplers, which

feature small glasses with four to five of their

most popular beers.

This way, you can experience a variety of beer

tastes without having to spend a lot of money.

Once you have tried a couple of the beers, you'll

know what to order.

Dark beers

If you are a casual beer drinker or can handle

your tolerance, you shouldn't be afraid in the

least to try dark beers. The dark color doesn't

mean that the beer is heavier or contains more

calories, it simply means that the malt in the

beer is roasted longer or roasted to a more darker

color than most.

Small business

Small businesses and small businessmen are yet

another reason to get into microbrewed beer other

than the taste. Local microbrew producers brew

their beers in small batches, so you'll be helping

to keep the business afloat, rather than supporting

the large giants of the industry.

When you know that your money is going to help the

little people, you'll normally find the brew to go

down much smoother. Small microbreweries need

all the help they can get to continue brewing,

which is reason enough to support them. You'll get

a great beer for your money - and you'll be

supporting those that actually need your help.


Microbrewery And America

The term microbrewery originally originated in the

United Kingdom during the late 1970s. Though it

was originally used to reflect on the size of the

breweries, it gradually came to reflect a different

attitude and approach to adaptability, flexibility,

experimentation, and customer service.

The term eventually spread to the United States,

where it was eventually used to indicate a brewery

that produces no less than 15,000 barrels of beer

per year. The term microbrewery is now falling

out of touch in the United States, as the term

craft brewer is preferred.

During the early twentieth century, prohibition drove

a majority of the breweries into bankruptcy because

they couldn't rely on selling bogus wine as

wineries of that era previously did. After going

through several decades of consolidation of

breweries, most commercial American beer produced

by a few large companies, resulting in a mild

tasting lager of which Budweiser is a great example.

Some beer drinks will consequently crave a variety

and turn to homebrewing and eventually start doing

it on a much larger scale. When they need inspiration

they'll turn to Britain, Germany, and Belgium where

centuries old tradition of artisan beer and cask

ale production have never died out.

The popularity behind these products was the fact

that they trend was spread quickly, and hundreds

of smaller breweries popped up, attached to a bar

where the product could be enjoyed by all. As

microbrews gained in popularity, some became more

than just simple microbrews, as they catered to a

broader range of beer.

Normally, American microbreweries will distribute

through wholesalers in traditional three tier

systems, then act as their own distributor and

sell to retailers. Selling includes tap rooms,

restaurants, or even off premise sales.


Clipper City Microbrew Company

The Clipper City Brewing Company was founded by

by pioneer Hugh Sisson, with the intention of

restoring a rich brewing tradition to the entire

Baltimore area. By focusing on the classic styles

of beer that are made with fresh ingredients and

high standards, Clipper City is the largest

brewing company in Baltimore, giving the entire Bay

area residents reason to celebrate.

After the inception of craft brewing in Baltimore,

Hugh immersed himself in developing and market

recognition of both Sisson's brewpub and all of its


The Clipper City Brewing Company produces three

regular offerings year round - Chesapeake lager,

Chesapeake amber, and the Chesapeake gold ale,

which was chosen as the official beer of the

Baltimore City bicentennial. Clipper City also

includes a line of specialty beers under the

Clipper Reserve heading.

These types include a Pilsner which is available in

May, Irish stout available in February, Oktoberfest

available in September, and a winter ale that's

available in late November. Clipper City also

manufacturers a seperate line of beer, known as

the Oxford Brands, which include an English pale

ale and a refreshing summer blend made with real

raspberries known as the Oxford raspberry wheat.

For many years, Clipper City has proven that they

are the dominant brewing company in the entire

Baltimore area. Residents of the area enjoy the

many varieties this brewing company offers, as

they have everything for the seasons.

Even if you don't live in the Baltimore area, there

are other ways to get the excellent beers that

Clipper City has to offer. There are several bars

and pubs that carry their beers, although most are

in the Baltimore and surrounding areas. If you've

been looking for a brew that is different from the

rest, you can count on the Clipper City Brewing

Company to deliver everything that you've never

thought possible about beer and microbrews.


Intro To Microbrews

With their varying flavor intensities and alcohol

contents, microbrews are here because beer

distributors noticed a market demand and took a

gamble on imports like Corona in the 70s. This

type of flavorful beer sold to a limited yet very

enthusiastic crowd.

Beer manufacturers create what sells, therefore

they didn't believe there would be a significant

maket with those types of beers. Consumer studies

and sales showed that the biggest part of the

American audiences enjoyed watery brew.

Then, out of nowhere, microbrews popped up after

the first successful brew, Samuel Adams, fought

with import distributors to try and convince them

that a flavorful American beer would sell. Now,

we have more microbrews than ever before with more

coming out each and every day.

Microbrews really hit when distributors really

believed that at least some people would buy them.

On the other hand, home brewers and brewpubs had

legal wars. In 1968, home brewing was legalized

and home brewers now had the support and assistance

of supply and advice stores.

Until 1983, brewpubs were illegal in all states.

Late in 1983, California first began to allow

brewpubs to brew and distribute their brands of

beer on site. These charming, yet small batch

breweries experienced high sales, especially in


Around a century ago, the United States had more

than 2,000 breweries making many different styles

and variations. By the 80's, there were only 40

brewing companies that offered a brand of American


Today, there are over 500 microbreweries and brewpubs

in the United States. Over the past few years,

brewpubs have been popping up all over th e place,

even in bars that used to only carry the top beers.


Microbrews Of The Northwest

The ideal place to sample the best of Northwest

handcrafted ale is a well run brewpub, which will

stimulate the human spirit with warmth, the scent

of malt, pleasant conversation, and hearty food.

Helping to combat the chilly, damp climate of

the region, brewpubs have become great places of

refuge where you can shake off the tears of a

hostile world, order a pint of cask beer, then

savor a complex beer that will caress every one

of your senses.

Microbreweries (companies that produce less than

20,000 kegs a year) can be found everywhere from

Minneapolis to Maui, although it all began in the

Pacific Northwest. On any evening, many dozen

locally brewed beers and ales are available for

your enjoyment in Portland and Seattle.

Most East Coast microbreweries produce German

style lagers, which is the most famous style of

brewing for American palates. The microbreweries

of the Northwest go all out for wildly adventerous

bitters, stouts, and porters.

With all of these amazing beers to choose from,

you may be wondering where to begin. When you

look for a microbrew, you should always be

thinking about variety. At any time in both

Seattle and Portland, you can find several dozen

fresh, locally made brew on tap. They all range

in strength from the standard 3 1/2% to a very

potent 8 1/2%.

As for the flavor, you'll have to taste it for

yourself. There's the rich sweetness of malt,

balanced well with good bitter hops. Then, there's

also the mocha java overtones of roasted barley,

used with stouts and porters, and the spicy kick

of malted wheat.

There are also the sweet ales and tart ales,

mild ales, and ales that are so charged with flavor

that they linger on the tongue. No matter which

type of microbrew you choose, your sure to get

a flavor that will make you come back for more.


Troubleshooting Home Brewing

Stuck fermentation

Stuck fermentation occurs when your beer fails to

ferment to completion. This can result from the

use of old yeast or poor ingredients. The best

way to take care of this problem, is to prevent

it from starting. To do this, you should:

1. Re-hydrate the yeast by adding it to

some water and adding wort to the yeast an hour

or more before you pitch. This will help ensure

that your yeast is still active.

2. Use an all malt or a recipe that has

a lot of it, as yeast needs nutrients to stay

alive. Corn and sugar lack these nutrients. If

your yeast still fails to survive, it cannot

reproduce. For this very reason, distilled water

shouldn't be used when making beer.

Under carbonation

If you've used the proper amount of priming sugar

and your beer is still flat, it's probably due

to the fact that you didn't properly rise the

sanitizing solution from the bottles. If too

much sanitizer is left in the bottles, it can

kill the yeast, which results in flat beer. The

only way to prevent this is to stop it from


Over carbonation

Over carbonation can cause your beer to turn into

a foam disaster. It can result from these causes:

1. Too much or uneven priming sugar. You

should measure your primer carefully and dissolve

it thoroughly in boiling water and allow it the

proper time to cool. Before bottling, make sure

to stir this into your beer.

2. Bottling your beer too early can also

result in too much carbonation.

3. Poor sanitization is also a cause. If

you allow your beer to come in contact with wild

yeast, it can result in over carbonation and

possibly even off flavors.

4. Bottles that are under filled can

also contribute to over carbonation. You should

allow 1/2 inch of head space to allow your

beer time to pressurize.

By taking the proper time to fix problems, you'll

ensure that your brew comes out great every

time you brew it. If you happen to run into a

problem, always take the time to rationize it

before you rush into fixing it. If you rush into

fixing a problem, you may start another one.

You should expect problems, especially if this

is your first time brewing. Even for expert home

brewers, problems can occur from time to time -

which is something you'll learn to deal with.


Differences Between Keg And Cask Ale

Over the years, keg beers have gotten a lot better.

If a cask beer is in poor condition, it's actually

possible for a fresh keg beer to be much better

tasting. Even though this may sound absurd, it's

very common for someone who's unfamilar with cask

ale to not be able to taste the difference between

keg and cask beer.

The warm temperature that cask beer is famous for

doesn't apply in the summer months all that often

these days, as temperature control units in pubs

have beer run through coolers. The fact is, some

pubs will run cask ale lines through lager chillers

in order to get the beer below the maximum temperature

required, so cask ale may very well end up just as

cold as a keg lager.

This isn't really a good thing, as ale requires a

cool rather than very cold temperature to bring out

all of its flavors. In a well run pub however, the

cask ale will be served at the right temperature -

cool but not too cold.

The smell of cask ale is much fresher and more

wholesome than keg beer. Keep in mind, the aroma of

cask ale doesn't have the stored up impact of

bottled type beers, as this beer has already been

exposed to the air for a couple of days - meaning

there is no impact when you transfer it to your

beer glass.

Normally, the aroma wil be released into the air when

it has been warmed up, which will probably happen

when you get near the bottom of the glass.

The flavor of cask ale is very similiar to the aroma

in it, which is very fresh and delicate. Unlike

other bottled beers, the flavor of cask ale is

even more noticeable than the aroma. At first,

the aroma is very slight, although the flavor

more than makes up for it.

The intensity of the flavor will depend on the style

of beer. The CO2 bubbles themselves will have

very little flavor, therefore a mass of bursting

bubbles against your tongue will prevent the actual

beer from making contact.

With cask ale, there is little to no carbonation,

so more of the flavor will connect with your taste

buds. You should be able to note the fruity taste

up front, with balance in the middle and bitterness

in the end. The flavor of a cask ale is much more

noticed than keg or even bottled beer.

Bottle conditioned beers will also have this type

of flavor profile, although they'll need to be

prepared and conditioned well in advance, meaning

that the bottle will need to be opened and allowed

to settle for a while. Cask ales offer the

conditioning being done fro you, so you won't need

to do it.

The most important aspect of cask ale is how it

feels in your mouth. It shouldn't be fizzy. If it

is, it's either a keg beer or a cask ale that's

been put on too soon. There will be a natural feel

in the beer, a life that makes you want to drink it.


Pale Ale Beer

English pale ale

The style of English pale ale was originated by

producers in Burton during the 1800's. The high

levels of calcium found in the water compliment this

style quite well, by making a more efficient

extraction of bitter resins from the hops.

The taste and aroma of English pale ale is similar

to that of the English Bitter. The term "pale" was

intended originally to distinguish beers of this

type from the black London Porter. Classic English

ales aren't pale, rather golden to copper colored.

American pale ale

The types of American pale ales range from golden

to light colored copper. This style of ale is best

characterized by American variety hops used to

produce high hop bitterness, aroma, and flavor.

These types of beers are less malty than their British


These beers have medium body and low to medium

maltiness. Chill haze is acceptable only at cold


Belgian pale ale

The Belgian ales are very similar to British ales,

although they are more spicy and aromatic - both

in malt and yeast character. These types of ales

are known by low, yet noticeable hop bitterness,

flavor, and aroma.

Low malt aroma and light to medium body are typical

for Belgian pal ale. In color, they are golden to

deep amber. Noble hop types are normally used,

while low to medium fruity esters are evident in

both flavor and aroma. Chill haze with Belgian pale

ale is acceptable at cold temperatures.

Pale ale beers are very popular throughout the world,

being served in hundreds of thousands of bars. They

are also great for social occasions as well, as

millions of people enjoy their dark yet satisfying

tastes. If you've never experienced pale ale beer -

you shouldn't deprive yourself any longer.


Oregon Microbrews

To get the most out of a visit to Oregon, you'll need

to try a local craft beer. Even if you don't like

to drink craft beer, it's something you should at

least experience.

If you are knew to microbrews, you should know that

just because the beer is a microbrew, it doesn't mean

that you'll need a knife and fork to drink it. All

over the state, you'll find several different

microbreweries that offer everything you could ever


All mass produced American style lagers have set a

rather disappointing standard for the beer drinkers

of the country. These beers can only be as good as

their ingredients. Instead of the fine grains such

as barley and wheat, corn and rice are often used

as cheaper replacements. In place of the whole kiln

hops, the bigger breweries rely on small pellets of

compressed hop dust.

Throughout the state of Oregon, there are more than

50 breweries that provide both locals and visitors

with many alternatives to drinking. The microbrewed

craft will rely on tradition, using the more

expensive ingredients in place of money saving

shortcuts. The implication here, is that these

types of beer are normally bitter or overly sweet.

Anytime you visit an unfamiliar brewpub, there is a

great way to sample a variety of brews without

having to buy a whole pint. Several pubs offer a

sampler tray with five to seven two ounce beers,

often labeled to avoid any type of confusion.

Throughout Oregon, microbrews are very popular, in

the pubs and on the street. You can find many

different varieties, more than you can find in

other states. If you don't live in Oregon, and you

get the chance to visit, you shouldn't hesitate

to check out some of the excellent microbrews.


Guide To Microbrews

Below, you will find a guide to some of the best brews

out there.

Long Trail Brewery - Bridgewater, Vermont

This brewery offers several brews that will easily

quench your thirst. The long trail ale is a very

good choice, as it's very tasty and not too heavy,

just right. The hibernator is also good, although

it's winter seasonal and high in alcohol. With a

pinch of honey, the pollenator provides a thirst

quenching solution to a hot summer haze.

Catamount Brewery - White River Junction - Vermont

The best seller here is the Catamount amber, as it

is very tasty. The Catamount gold is also good,

as it is lighter than the amber and offers plenty

of refreshment on a hot day. For winter months,

the Catamount Christmas ale offers a crisp taste

for the cold.

7 Barrel Brewery - New Hampshire

The 7 Barrel Brewery is a restaurant as well as a

brewery. The best brews here are the Dublin brown

ale and the red 7 ale, although you really can't

go wrong with any of their offerings. They also

offer live music every Friday night with many

great bands.

Vermont Pub - Burlington, Vermont

This pub is the sister brewery of the 7 Barrel

Brewery. They offer a great bar that serves two

rooms, with plenty of fresh and tasty beer. The

brown ale and dog bite bitter are the best, as they

are both very tasty.

Magic Hat Brewery - Burlington, Vermont

This brewery offers some of the best in the state

of Vermont - as well as the entire United States!

Their well known popular number 9 can be found on

taps around the state. When you visit, don't

forget to look under the cap, as they call it

"Magic Hat" for a reason!


Beer Ingredients

The main ingredients found in beer are water, malted

barley, hops, and yeast. There are other ingredients

such as flavoring, sugar, and other ingredients that

are commonly used. Starches are used as well, as

they convert in the mashing process to easily

fermentable sugars that will help to increase the

alcohol content of beer while adding body and flavor.


Seeing as how beer is mainly composed of water, the

source of water and its characteristics have a very

important effect on the character of the beer. A

lot of beer styles were influenced by the

characteristics of water in the region. Although

the effect of minerals in brewing water is complex,

hard water is more suited to dark styles, while

soft ware is more suited to light styles.


Among malts, barley is the most widely used due to

its high amylase content, and a digestive enzyme

that facilitates the breakdown of starch into

sugars. Depending on what can be cultivated locally,

other malts and unmalted grains can be used, such

as wheat, rice, oats, and rye.

Malt is obtained by soaking grain in water, allowing

it to germinate, then drying the germinated grain

in a kiln. By malting the grain, enzymes will

eventually convert the starches in the grain into

fermentable sugars.


Since the seventeenth century, hops have been

commonly used as a bittering agent in beer. Hops

help to contribute a bitterness that will balance

the sweetness of the malts. They also contribute

aromas which range from citrus to herbal.

Hops also provide an antibiotic effect that favors

the activity of brewer's yeast over the less

desirable microorganisms. The bitterness in beer

is normally measured on the International

Bitterness Units scale.


Yeast is a microorganism that's responsible for

fermentation. Specific strains of yeast are chosen

depending on the type of beer produced, as the

two main strains are ale yeast and lager yeast,

with other variations available as well.

Yeast helps to metabolise the sugars that are

extracted from the grains, and produces alcohol

and carbon dioxide as a result. Before the functions

of yeast were understood, all fermentations were

done using wild or airborne yeasts.

Clarifying agent

A lot of brewers prefer to add one or more

clarifying agents to beer that aren't required

to be published as ingredients. Examples include

Isinglas finings, which are obtained from swim

bladders of fish and Irish moss, which is a type

of red alga.

Since these ingredients can be obtained from animals,

those who are concerned with either the use or

consumption of animal products should obtain detailed

information from the brewer.


History of Microbrews

Many historians believe that the ancient Sumerians

and Mesopotamians were brewing as early back as

10,000 B. C. Even though this product would have

been different from the bottles varieties of today,

it would have still been recognizable.

The ancient Egyptians and the Chinese brewed their

beer, as did civilizations in America, where they

used corn instead of barley. Back then, thousands

of years ago, microbrews were very popular and

on their way to what we now know and love today.

In the middle ages, European monks were the

guardians of literature and science, as well as

the art of making beer. They refined the process

to perfection, and even institutionalized the use

of hops as both flavoring and a preservative.

It wasn't however, until Louis Pasteur came along

that a final, important development was determined.

Until this time, brewers had to depend on the wild

yet airborne yeast for fermentation. By establishing

that yeast is actually a living organism, he opened

the gates for controlling the conversion of sugar

into alcohol.

Grapes grow well in warmer climates, while barley

grows better in cool climates. This is how the

northern areas of Germany and England first became

famous for their beers.

Beer in America

Everything in America went dim until the dark day

of 1920, when prohibition took effect. A lot of

breweries went out of business or switched their

production to soda pop. Not everyone stopped

drinking, but gangster related products weren't

known for high quality.

When Franklin D. Roosevelt became president, he

quickly appealed the very unpopular law. The

new breeds of now famous beer came after World War

2 were generally mass produced and very bland.


Alaskan Brewing

The Alaskan brewing company is the oldest operating

brewery in Alaska, with their amber beer being

their most popular brand. They produce two other

brands as well, pale ale and Alaskan frontier

amber. If you enjoy fresh amber beer, Alaskan

brewing is what you want.

As you may already know, brewing beer in Alaska is

very hard to do. The coastal community of Juneau

doesn't have road connections to the lower 48 states,

so everything arrives and leaves by water or air,

with weather always having the final say.

In 1986, the Alaskan brewing company became the

67th brewery to operate in the United States and

the only one to operate in Alaska. Since that time,

Alaskan brewery has received more than 30 major

medals and awards, including the best beer in the

nation award during the 1988 Great American Beer


The popularity of their beers has led to a great

amount of efforts to keep up with the demand from

consumers. They also hold the unnofficial record

for the production on a 10 barrel brewing system,

which produces an amazing 42 batches a week.

The Alaskan Brewery offers several different styles

of brew as well, which are listed below:

1. Amber - This is the company's flagship

beer, based on a turn of the century recipe that

was used to quench the thirst of the miners during

the Gold Rush era. It provides a smooth, malty,

rich taste that goes well with meals - or friends.

2. Pale - Pale is fresh, crips, and

inviting. Alaskan pale is great with crab, pawns,

and salads. The floral aroma of the hops is

derived from dry hopping the tanks during the entire

fermentation process.

3. Stout - The oatmeal style beer of stout

doesn't have the harshness of other stouts. Great

with chocolate and hearty meals, stout is also

ideal to enjoy while walking in the snow.

4. ESB - If you like hops, the infusion

of hops in this delight will amaze your nose while

the refreshing cascade hops will provide a wonderful

crispness to both the flavor and the finish. This

beer is great with spicy food, wild game, and other

wintery food.

5. Smoked porter - Very exclusive, Alaskan

smoked porter has a world class reputation for its

excellence. Brewed in the fall, this beer is ideal

for storing in the cellar for later enjoyment.

6. Winter ale - This tender brew of spruce

trees has been used for brewing in Alaska since

the late 1700s.



Lagering, as a process, was discovered around 200

years ago in Bavaria. Here, it was found that

beers experiencing secondary fermentation in casks

stored in the caves of the Alps would produce beers

with differnet characteristics than ales.

The process of lagering became very popular in

areas where fermentating with cool temperatures

could be maintained, although it wasn't until the

invention of the refrigerator that lagers really

spread around the world.

Over the last several years, flat sales have been

seen for breweries as a growth in sales for

American microbrews. Even though a lot of the

beer volume from lager is composed of cheap quality

product from the large breweries, there's plenty

of great products available, although most are

from Europe.

European all malt Pilsener

World wild, Pilseners are the most popular style.

The style originated in Bohemia in a town that

was named Pilsen by the brewery. Even though

there are some superb Pilseners made outside this

region, the style is frequently cheapened and

is also the basis for many beers lacking quality

or being just plain ol' cheap beer.

German Pilsener

Classic German Pilseners are very light in color

and well hopped, with the hop bitterness being

high. It's a well attenuated, medium bodied beer

although a malty accent can be perceived. There

shouldn't be any chill haze, as the head of the

beer should be dense and rich.

Bohemian lager

Lagers in this category are very similar to German

Pilseners, although they are more full bodied

and can be as dark as light amber. This style of

beer will balance the moderate bitterness and

noble hop aroma with a malty, yet slightly sweet



Beer Culture

Social context

Many social traditions and activities are very

associated with drinking beer, such as playing cards,

darts, or other games. The consumption of beer in

isolation and excess may be associated with people

drinking away their troubles, while drinking in

excess with company may be associated with binge


Around the world

All over the world, beer is consumed. There are

several breweries in the Middle East countries as

well, such as Iraq and Syria. There is also

breweries in African countries and other remote

countries such as Mongolia as well.

Glassware serving

Getting an appropriate beer glass is considered

desirable by some drinkers. There are some drinkers

of beer that may sometimes drink out of the bottle

or can, while others may choose to pour their

beer into a glass. Drinking from a bottle picks

up aromas by the nose, so if a drinker wishes to

appreciate the aroma of a beer, the beer is first

poured into a mug, glass, or stein.

Similar to wine, there is specialized styles of

glasses for some types of beer, with some breweries

producing glassware intended for their own styles

of beer.


The conditions for serving beer have a big influence

on a drinker's experiences. An important factor

when drinking is the temperature - as colder

temperatures will start to inhibit the chemical

senses of the tongue and throat, which will narrow

down the flavor profile of beer, allow certain

lagers to release their crispness.


The process of pouring will have an influence on

the presentation of beer. The flow rate from the

tap, titling of the glass, and position of the

pour into the glass will all affect the outcome,

such as the size and longevity of the head and the

turbulence of the bar as it begins to release the


The more heavily carbonated beers such as German

pilseners will need settling time before they are

served, although many of them are served with the

addition of the remaining yeast at the bottom to

add extra color and flavor.

Beer rating

The rating of beer is a craze that combines the

enjoyment of drinking beer with the hobby of

collecting it. Those that drink beer sometimes

tend to record their scores and comments on various

internet websites.

This is a worldwide activity, as people in the

United States will swap bottles of beer with those

living in New Zealand and Russia. The scores may

then be tallied together to create lists of the

most popular beers in each country as well as

those throughout the world.


Anheuser Busch And Microbrews

Beer brewing has always been the core business of

the Anheuser-Busch company. An industry leader

since 1957, Anheuser-Busch currently owns over half

of the domestic beer market.

The market share has grown so much that Anheuser-

Busch now has a bigger portion of the market than

the next four competitors, with the international

sales being no different. Anheuser-Busch remains

the leading exporter of beer from the United States,

with sales in more than 60 countries.

Microbreweries, or microbrews for short, have been

gaining a lot of attention in the past several

years. Microbrews are best classified as breweries

that produce less than 15,000 barrels in a given


The strength of microbrews is found in their

philosophy that beer should be of the highest

quality. Therefore, microbrews are only brewed

with malted barley, hops, water, and yeast, which

are the only four ingredients found in the purist

German beers. Mass bottled beers normally add

rice and corn to help lower costs.

The only drawback to microbrews is what they cost.

The more expensive ingredients found in microbrews

cost on average 60% higher than the mass bottled


Beer isn't like wine, which tends to get better

with age. Beer is instead a food that should be

consumed as soon as possible after production.

With this in mind, pubs or microbrews that

produce beer on the premises are the hottest new

trends, with four new pubs on average popping

up each and every week.

Each year, sales of microbrews goes up an average

of 40% each year. This figure is very impressive

when you consider that the market is shrinking

as a whole. Even with this amazing success, the

microbrew sales represent around two percent of

the entire beer market.

In their pursuit to continue dominating the

entire beer market, Anheuser-Busch has tapped

into the trend of microbrews. They recently

purchased a stake in the Seattle based Red Hook

Ale microbrewery. The new products they released

into the beer market include Red Wolf, Elk

Mountain Red, and Elk Mountain Amber Ale.

Microbrews are normally produced regionally,

therefore Anheuser-Busch is developing regional

manufacturers and distributors. By doing this,

they must decide on the best possible way to

handle their short term cash needs for purchasing

inventory in these tiny plants.

With their recent transition into the world of

microbrews, you can count on Anheuser-Busch to

make quite the impact. They will be offering

more microbrews in the future, which is great

news for beer drinkers. If you like the wild

taste of microbrews, Anheuser-Busch is more than

worth your time and money.


Original Microbrews

Beer is almost as old as civilization itself. It is

mentioned in Sumerian texts that date back more than

5,000 years ago. Beginning in the 1950s, scientists

debated the notion that beer, not bread, was actually

the start of the development for agriculture.

Almost every culture around the world has invented

its own concotion of beer. History says brewing

was a home based operation, as part of the preparation

in meals. From South Africa to China, the production

of beer grew in scale with the rise of society,

then later became primarily a function of the state.

The physical evidence of ancient brewing isn't easy

to obtain. With most cultures, home beer brewing

required only the basic of ingredients, such as a

fire, cooking vessels, and some jars. None of these

materials are unique to the brewing process. Jars

that were found near a kiln could have been used

for storing barley or wheat for bread, while cooking

pots could have been used for heating liquids.

So far, archaeologists haven't been able to find a

complete set of evidence. One of the oldest

breweries was found in southern Egypt and dates back

to over 5,000 years ago. At this site, teams found

well heated vats that were encrusted on the inside

with a cereal based residue.

Another ancient brewery was discovered along the

Nile in the middle of Egypt. The site was located

in what is thought to be the Sun Temple, where

a king's wife was buried. Archaeologists found

a complex set of rooms that had been used for

cereal processing. Ovens, grains, and larger jars

indicate that the rooms were used as a bakery or

a brewery.

In a different area of the world, excavators found

a brewery dating back to the times of the Romans.

On this site, there were preserved tables that

date from A. D. 100, with beer being specifically

mentioned on several of the tablets.

The chemical evidence of beer would prove to be a

site's purpose once and for all, although that

normally isn't easy. Alcohol is much too delicate

to last for centuries, as any cereal based residue

found could have come from baking just as easily

as from brewing.

Throughout the course of time, there will always

be evidence of beer being brewed many centuries

ago. Without actually finding physical evidence

though, it can be really hard to determine. If

there were physical evidence, it would be really

different indeed.


Microbrewing With Fruit

Adding fruit to beers will add a new and unique

twist of complexity to the beverage. A raspberry

wheat for example, would add a tart flavor as peach

would add the smooth sweet taste that we all

associate with peaches in your brew.

If you plan to add fruit to your brew, it's highly

recommended that your fruit is fresh. The longer

fruit is allowed to ripen from the time it has

been picked, the greater the chance that airborne

bacteria can infect your batch.

Although the fruit will most likely be boiled with

the wort, the precaution above is still highly

recommended. Alternately, you may decide to use

fruit puree, which will offer homebrewers the

chance to brew with fruit without having the fear

of contamination. Regardless of your style of

brew, you can normally add fruit to it.

The process of adding fruit is simple. Crush,

chop, or break up the fruit that you are planning

to use. Next, place the processed fruit into a

sparging bag then let it steep in the hot wort

for five to ten minutes after the boiling has

been finished.

When you are transfering your brew mixture to

your primary fermenter, you may choose to sparge

your fruit with some added water to extract every

last drop of essence from the fruit. Always

keep in mind that when you add fruit, you are

adding additional sugar to your wort. This added

sugar concentration will effect your original

and final specific gravity when you measure it

with a hydrometer.

Some fruits that you use are actually easier to

work with than others. Raspberries for example,

may leave seeds in your primary fermenter if they

aren't properly filtered. The basic object to

achieve a quality fruit beer is to capture the

essence from the fruit then remove all that

remains before you start the primary fermentation.

Adding fruit to your microbrew will give your

brew a unique taste. There are many brews out

there that take full advantage of fruit, many of

which are extremely popular. Fruit can bring

a very refreshing taste, especially when it is

brewed the right way.

For homebrewers all over the world, fruit is a

nice addition to any microbrew. You can use

virtually any type of fruit you can think of,

which is one of the reasons why fruit brewing

is so very popular. Just like wine, fruit can

make any brew taste like a tropical paradise.


Wheat Beers

Wheat beers are beers that are brewed with both

malted barley and malted wheat, rather than using

just barley. The addition of wheat will lend wheat

beers a lighter flavor and somewhat paler color

than most all barley ales and beers. Wheat beer

is normally top fermented, which is fermentation

with ale yeast.

All types of wheat beers have become very popular

in the last several years, especially in warm

weather. In earlier centuries, the brewing of

wheat beer was illegal in many places, simply

because wheat was too important as both bread and

cereal to waste it with brewing beers.

The two most important varieties of wheat beers

are Belgian and German.


Belgian wheat beers are easily the best known,

as they get their name from the suspended wheat

proteins which give it the whitish color. Belgian

white beers often have spices such as coriander

or orange peels added, which help to give them

a hint of fruity flavor.


German wheat beer is a well known variation through

the sourthern part of the country. The German

yeast wheat is a variety in which the yeast isn't

filtered out. The filtration will take the yeast

out, and also strips wheat proteins which will

make it appear cloudy.

A lot of microbrewers in the United States as

well as Canada that make their own variations of

wheat beer, which is particularly popular in

Portland Oregon, which is considered to be the

beer capital.

In Europe, wheat beer is normally served in special

types of wheat beer glasses. In Belgium they are

normally solid glasses. Other countries will take

half a liter, in which the glasses are normally

tall and slim, tapering slightly towards the


In the United States, wheat beer is normally served

with a slice of lemon.


Equipment For Microbrews

Before you can start brewing beer, you'll need to

have the right equipment. If this is your first

time brewing, you should start simple. Before

you begin, the first thing that you'll need is a

brewpot. Before you rush out and buy one, you

may already have one that will work just fine.

The pot should hold at least three gallons of

liquid. The next thing you'll need is a fermenter.

For the average five gallon batch, the fermenter

should hold six gallons or more, allowing space

for a foam that will form during the vigorous

process of fermentation.

For this stage, a glass carboy or food grade

plastic bucket is often used. You'll also need

an airlock for your fermenter to allow the C02

to escape while also keeping the air out. A

siphon hose is also needed to transfer beer from

the fermenter when it's ready, without having

to mix air into it.

A bottling bucket will also help to make the

process much easier. Bottling buckets are

similiar to fermenters, except the fact that they

have a spigot at the bottom that allows you to

fill the bottles directly, which makes the

entire process less messy and gets things done

much quicker. You'll also need a capper to

seal your bottles; as bottles and caps or even

a keg will be needed to store and serve your


If you look around, you may be able to find a

kit that will contain everything you need. You

can purchase kits on the internet, many of

which offer the top quality equipment you'll

need to brew. All you have to do is look around

the net, as there are many different web sites

that offer equipment for microbrews.

If you don't want to buy a kit, you can always

buy each piece of equipment seperately. This

tends to be a bit more expensive than buying

a kit, although you'll be able to pick each

piece of equipment yourself, without having to

take what's included in the kit.

Once you get all of the necessary equipment

together, you should know how to use it before

you get started. This way, you won't run into

any problems once you start brewing. The

equipment needed for brewing is easy to use, so

you shouldn't have any problems.

Brewing microbrews can be both fun and exciting,

especially when you start brewing your own

creations. You can drink the brew yourself,

or serve it to friends and family. Microbrews

are fun to drink and create - which makes having

the proper equipment all the more while.


Process Of Homebrewing Microbrews

The normal batch of homebrewed beer is five gallons

in volume, which is enough for 2 cases, or 48 12

ounce bottle of beer.

The typical homebrewed beer is produced by boiling

water, malt extract and hops together in a large

kettle and then cooling the resulting wort and adding

yeast for fermenting. Experienced homebrewers will

make their own extract from crushed malt barley by

a more complicated process of mashing the grain in

boiling hot water.

With both cases, the wort is boiled for 15 min to

an hour, to help remove some impurities, dissolve

the character of the hops, then break down some of

the sugar. The wort is then cooled down to a

pitching temperature.

The cooled wort is then poured into the primary

fermenter in a manner of aggression, as to aerate

the wort. Sufficient oxygen is also necessary for

the yeast's growth stage. The yeast is then put

into the wort.

The primary fermentation will take place in a large

food bucket or carboy. Sometimes it is left open

but often stoppered with the carbon dioxide gas

that's produced by venting through a fermentation


The process of making microbrews takes a lot of

time indeed, although you can take the necessary

short cuts once you learn more about how the

process works. If this is your first time brewing,

you should always use common sense and know what

you are doing.

One of the best things about making your own

homebrews is the fact that you can experiment with

ingredients and brew your own creations. You can

brew almost anything, providing you have the right

type of equipment - which can easily be found.