Making a mistake with anything is a good thing because it is a learning experience. It makes each next time a little better until a method is perfected. It does not have to be the “textbook” version, especially with a recipe or using the equipment. Learn the ins and outs of making beer and other spirits at
Everyone “tweaks” things to their own specifications until it is their idea of perfection. That is how we get secret ingredients and unique varieties. That is no different with beer.
If you notice, there are so many kinds of beer on the market, including a personal favorite, chocolate. All these could have started with someone has made a mistake somewhere when using the equipment, missing an ingredient, or adding too much of something, especially when involved in homebrewing.
The process is particularly complicated and lengthy but can result in fantastic tasting seasoned beer. It might not turn out like the commercial brewers who benefit from professional equipment like that from ABS, but when you get good enough, you can open your own brewery and invest in these pieces. It takes practice which includes making mistakes . . . or maybe trying to avoid them.
Mistakes To Avoid on Your Path to The Professional Brewing World
On the path to the professional brewing industry, many people start with homebrewing equipment to learn the trade and perfect their recipes. In the process, there will be many mistakes and much fine-tuning to make brewing your own skill.
No one wants to do it the way it is supposed to be done or how everyone else does it. You want to develop your own style and tweak the technique as you feel necessary until you establish what you think is the ideal brew.
Once you reach that point, after all the errors, you will be ready to invest in the professional equipment and go into the industry in real-time. But first, let us look at some mistakes to try to avoid to improve overall quality, which is a necessity. Go here for guidance on the simplest beer to brew.
● Failing to keep gear adequately clean
The process of brewing is messy, so in between each session, you want to ensure that you keep the equipment cleaned up, so you receive a quality result with optimum flavor. There should be no residue from the previous batch with the potential for ruining the taste, to say the least.
Sanitizing is different from cleaning because it kills bacteria that cleaning is not capable of. Cleaning means eliminating grime, gunk, proteins, fats, anything that can destroy the flavor.
Improperly sanitizing (*especially in the food and beverage industry is disallowed but) exposes your beer to undesirable microbes aside from making the brew taste bad, stalls fermentation, and presents severe problems with “growths.”
Not only the equipment and every surrounding area where the brewing process takes place needs to be sanitized, and that includes your hands.
● Poor quality of water
You might feel that your tap water is sufficient for drinking as it is, but it might not be adequate for brewing. The suggestion is that a water system coming into the home is chlorinated and generally unfiltered resulting in a beer that tastes either plastic or metallic.
In addition, a beer needs to have a specific finish, pH, gravity; the ion / pH profile could change this depending on the water table in the local area.
Most of the recipes produced on the market are developed based on the specific water from the area initially produced. The water in your particular location might not have the pH/mineral balance comparable to the recipe you’re attempting.
An excellent way to ensure the type of water you are working with is to incorporate a water test kit to develop specific recipes or perhaps make corrections so the ultimate flavor and finish balance with the water you have. It is a matter of fine-tuning your technique and working with what you have. Go to
for FAQs on brewing.
● Putting old ingredients to use
Over time organic compounds will break down and spoil, particularly after opening, especially grains and hop varieties that comprise beer. To have a fresh, quality taste, you should avoid using stale ingredients that have been on the shelf for a prolonged period.
There should be a recommended period of usage on the packaging that you need to pay attention to and read the product to learn how to store it for the optimum freshness for the most extended time. No one wants beer that tastes flat.
● Direct sunlight is not optimal
When beer is fermenting and has exposure to sunlight, the indication is that there are “photochemical reactions.” This means that the light plus the heat react with the beer hops in what is described as a “skunky,” horrible result.
Many beers will be in glass bottles that are dark or amber in color since this filters the UV “wavelengths” that create those nasty flavors. Unfortunately, the suggestion is those bottles you find on the market which are clear, greens, or blues will not filter in the same way that the amber does.
● Beer in bottles too soon
A genuine mistake to avoid is caused by a brewer becoming impatient. Brewing beer can be a lengthy, complicated procedure that requires a brewer to have a certain level of patience to develop a decent product.
Some of the extended periods include waiting while the yeast processes to wort and then converts into beer. With the passing of time, some people get a bit excited to go ahead and bottle the product before it reaches the end-stage. But an issue during bottle conditioning is beer will continue to ferment, and pressure will build if the beer is bottled too soon, meaning the bottle will explode.
It is essential to pay attention to the recipe and use a “refractometer” to guide the wort’s final gravity prior to bottling. If it is not on target, let the wort ferment roughly. one or two more days before testing again.
No one wants bottles bursting when they worked so hard to get to this point in the brewing. Patience will ensure that each step you achieve thus far pays off with the ideal product in the end.
These are merely a very few steps in the homebrewing process that will guide you towards your professional goals. Again, the overall procedure is extensive and complex, with the potential for many mistakes, especially when you are new to the brewing world.
With each mistake will come an education, so the next time, you will fine-tune your process a little more, developing your own skills and techniques. Fortunately, with a bit of research, like these few tips provided here, you can learn a few common difficulties many beginners to brewing face and how to avoid them.
The primary steps are keeping everything, including the equipment, surrounding areas, and especially your hands, clean and sanitary, using fresh organic components, and following the advisable techniques at least until you become comfortable. Then perhaps you will have an edge in the professional brewing world.