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The pursuit of Gruit part 2

In my last post I detailed the basics of Gruit, or at least what in our time we know about it. The article is about experimenting with the basic and other ingredients to improve the flavour. The first important thing to note when experimenting is to make sure the ingredients you are using are safe, and that nothing else is infecting the brew. Dipping or soaking your ingredients in boiling water before use is not a bad idea. Drying them after tends to help even more. I believe many of my first attempts had wild yeast get in them spoiling the taste, this is now what I assume was the more cidery taste. Wild yeast will give varied results so if you notice any type of off taste it could be the c

How to deal with a bad brew

The simple fact with homebrewing is that sooner or later you will mess up. This is part of the reason our 1 gallon kits are so useful, because dealing with 5 gallons of bad ale is a disheartening task. But much can be learnt from the situation with the right mind set. First, keep a Log book. Every time you do a brew record any little detail about it, even if it is not your own recipe. Measurements, what you have done differently, how long it took to brew and most importantly any factor that seems off. By doing this it makes tracking down what exactly went wrong and how to fix it much easier, but also helps you identify what changes were beneficial. Clean everything. No really, nuke the enti

What is yeast? A not too technical guide

Like yeast itself, this is a very simple question yet when we look into it there is actually a lot of complexity if you wish to look deeper. But first I will begin with the basic points Yeast are a type of fungus. They are a single celled organism. Yeast break down carbohydrate into smaller stuff, for us this means breaking down sugars into alcohol and other substances. Not everything produced is wanted though, this includes by-products such as carbon dioxide and proteins. They reproduce asexual and with enough carbohydrates to survive yeast still keep growing in number. Yeast generally does not want to be subject to high temperatures as it will die, though certain strains can survive past 1

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The Glen, Stone House Lane, Bulkeley, Malpas, Cheshire, United Kingdom

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