Brewers make the wort, but yeast makes the beer.
It’s a bit of a cliche but true.
Your chances of producing great beer largely depend on pitching a good amount of healthy yeast into your wort. All the major yeast laboratories publish calculators, guides and explanations, as do other places of note. Pick one that you like the look of and embrace it. Here, in no particular order, are our Top Ten links to help you get the whole yeast thing right. (Links open in a new window.)
- Lallemand is the home of Danstar dried brewing yeast. Their calculator is very simple and fuss-free.
- Wyeast Activators are known as Smack-Packs. To use them properly, read what the maker has to say.
- Got a thing for US-05? Fermentis have some tips on how to get the most out of it. They also produce a great pamphlet of tips and tricks for brewers using dry yeast.
- Brewers Friend have almost every calculator you can think of. Their yeast pitching rate calculator is very configurable and comes with an explanation of who, what, where and why.
- Jamil Zainasheff is a co-author of Brewing Classic Styles and one of (if not the) most awarded American homebrewers in history. He writes about yeast pitching rates and has written helper apps for PC, Apple and Android.
Without hops, it's just sugary water.
Imagine if there was a big long list of hops, along with descriptions of their flavour profile. Oh, hang on. There is!
General Brewing Stuff
A good place to start is John Palmer's How To Brew. Of course, we sell it in hard copy...
We often get asked about passivation of stainless steel. Like so many things, it is both complicated and simple. The British Stainless Steel Association has a good article on how, what and why.