Instructions: Wort to Beer
What you have is freshly brewed wort (or pronounced wert) in a vessel ready to brew. The sugary liquid is called wort until yeast is pitched (added) thereafter it becomes BEER. That Brewing Co. has brewed one of your favourite WORTS for you to ferment and package at home. Here’s how:
1.Find a dark cool home for your bucket to sit for the next week. Make sure no naughty hands are going to fiddle with your golden nectar as wort is very sensitive to contamination.
Now it’s time to make the magic happen!
2. Pitching the yeast. By now we are all experts at cleaning and sanitizing our hands. Get your hands ready, make sure there is no air movement around your fermenter, crack the lid open and pour all the yeast in. (Note that the yeast has a double seal when opening it).
3. Close the lid but don’t force it too tightly. When the yeast starts to ferment, carbon dioxide is released and we want that to slowly discharge. Normally there is an air lock on the bucket but because every second person in SA is a home brewer there are none left…
For extra precaution you can wrap some cling wrap around the lid of the bucket.
4a. Let the yeast do its work for 4-5 days. You might see a head form on the beer, that is the yeast.
4b. Dry Hopping. Here we add hops to the fermenter. You will have a pack that’s best stored in the freezer. Sanitize your packet and a pair of scissors. Cut the packet open, open the fermenter just enough to pour all the hops in then reseal the fermenter. We will leave this for 3 to 5 days.
5. Sanitize your bottles. Make a mixture of 3ml/L of non-rinse sanitizer. Prepare 2L. Fill one bottle, let rest for 5 minutes and then transfer to the next. Your bottles are ready to fill with beer. Keep the sanitizer for your stirring spoon.
6. Bulk priming – Prep the priming sugar! Boil up the priming sugar in 300ml of water for 10 minutes. Let cool to around 20 degrees Celsius. It is best to do this in a pot with a lid. To speed up the cooling process, the pot can be placed in an ice bath.
Once cooled, open your fermenter (just enough to pour the sugar water in) mix in gently with a sanitized ladle/spoon (use a stainless steel item as they are best for cleaning and sanitizing). Let it rest for 5 minutes.
7. Filling the bottles. After the 5 minutes start filling the bottles. Pour the beer in at an angle to reduce splashing and foaming. Fill with approximately 2cm space before the opening of the bottle. Seal the bottle and store in a similar space to where your beer fermented (generally a garage or unused bath or shower). This process is what creates the fizz in the beer, referred to as bulk priming, by doing a small fermentation and creating CO2 in a sealed bottle. If you have heard about bottles exploding this is the step where it starts happening. If beers are over primed or has a contaminant causing excess CO2, they could pop. As a precaution cover them with a blanket.
8. After bottle conditioning for 5 days, cool and drink!!