What my desk at home generally looks like
I like to read. I also like to buy books. I actually just bought a book on woodworking, so I could learn how to build a bookshelf to hold more books. That being said, I have a few brewing books. Some have left my house, destined for the shelves of others. A few of my basic brewing books are no longer here, as friends getting into brewing needed them more than I did. So here is a partial list of what I’ve got on my shelves. (If you click the images, they’ll take you to Amazon. I get a little kickback if you buy from that link.) The first few are brewing books, then some equipment stuff, followed by some brewing business books. There are of course magazines and websites. I subscribe to Brew Your Own, Zymurgy, and Beer Advocate. I also regularly check out byo.com, probrewer.com, beeradvocate.com, and the recipes on beertools.com. There are many more websites, one off calculators, random articles, blogs, etc. Check out the sidebar for some, or go to the google.
Designing Great Beers
Once you’ve moved past the basic “How do I brew” books, this is the Bible. It is written like a text book, which in this case is a good thing. There is very detailed information on every little step of the brewing process, from choosing your malt to water calculations. Definitely a go to book.
I bought this one because it had some clone recipes of some breweries I really like, such as Dogfish Head, Avery, Allagash, and Russian River. They are mainly partial mash recipes, but they’re pretty cool. There are some interesting recipes, like a Chamomile Honey Wheat, Blood Orange Hefeweizen, etc. And some information on what it means to brew “extreme”. It’s a fun book for sure.
The Brew Master’s Bible
I honestly haven’t read too much of this one. My roommate bought it when he was starting to get into brewing. I think it’s supposed to be a pretty good getting-started style of book, but I haven’t had time to peruse it too thoroughly.
The Home Brewer’s Answer Book
This is a great resource book. Every once in a while, something weird happens. This book either has the answer, or enough of a base of an answer to let you ask a better question. It’s got “Oh no something went wrong” answers, as well as “Why the heck do they do things this way” answers. And a few things in between.
Great “How to” book on making your own equipment. It has detailed instructions on making everything from a mash tun to a wort chiller, a full brewing system to a grain mill. Definitely a good purchase.
Brewing up a Business
This is my personal brewery business bible. If you want some warm fuzzy feelings about starting a brewery, read this book a few times. Sam is the poster boy of our industry, and this book is his “How to start with nothing and be awesome” book. It has lots of blank pages at the back for note taking. Most of mine are filled up now.
Starting Your Own Brewery
This is the Brewers Association’s guide. It’s got all the goods. Floor construction, marketing plans, stories from those who have been there, and a sample business plan. Sadly, there are a huge number of proofreading errors, which can get distracting. But overall, it’s a good book. I’m almost finished with it. There are some essays by some pretty heavy hitters, like Ray Daniels, John Hickenlooper (founder of Wynkoop and current mayor of Denver), and Sam Calagione, to name a few.
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