Captain’s Log #1 — Mr. Beer is here, but now what?
Welcome to the first instalment of my series chronicling my rookie attempts at homebrewing. For this series, I am using the popular Mr. Beer Premium brewing system, and I will update throughout the entire process from ordering the supplies to the moment the first drops find their way past my lips. I will also reference the series on the radio show I co-host, Russ “Big Mick” McKenzie — The Sporting Gentlemen. I encourage you to follow along and post questions below and I’ll get to them on air.
Ordering from MrBeer.com
A quick look at Mr. Beer’s website would immediately impress upon you the breadth of their company. With so many options for products and recipes, where does one even begin? I opted for one of their most popular packages, the “8-Liter Extra Kit”. Essentially, here are the main features of the kit I chose:
- produces one case of beer
- 8 Liter, UV-resistant Fermenter
- 11 740-mL Plastic Bottles, Caps and Labels
- Krausen Kollar, Lid and Clips
- Spigot Assembly and Bottling Wand
- 1 can of Brewing Extract
- 1 packet of Brewers Yeast
- 2 packets of No-Rinse Cleanser
- 1 bag of Carbonation Drops
- Brewing With Mr.Beer® DVD
- Detailed Printed Instructions
As far as recipes, there are quite literally dozens to choose from each of five categories: Balanced, Malty, Hoppy, Fruity and Cider (for those fruit-loving beverage connoisseurs). With no experience in brewing, I invited Rick Zich from Mr. Beer to recommend one to me during our interview of him (which you can find on The Sporting Gentlemen Facebook page or in the player below).
With a very user-friendly customer service, I placed my order on-site. It was an easy process.
The friendly UPS guy
Being from Canada, I wasn’t sure what kind of shipping time to expect. I was pleasantly surprised to have a relatively short waiting period, about 10 days, from when the item was ordered to when the box arrived at my door. A friendly wave to the delivery man and apologies for a yapping dog, and I was ready to start unpacking my new hobby-in-a-box.
Unwrapping the wrapping
It really is surprising how much can fit in a box. Not only did I get all of what I expect will be needed to brew my first batch of beer, but I also got a few throw-ins including two souvenir beer glasses, a hat, and a t-shirt. The box was easy to disassemble and the instructions were helpful in understand what everything was. I ordered two recipes: Bewitched Amber Ale and Diablo IPA.
With the unwrapping out of the way, I am ready to start the brewing process.
Please check back for the next installment during which I will chronicle the process in putting the recipe together.
Enjoy our interview with Rich Zich from Mr. Beer:
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