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Anyone Using Brewfather?

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ABG

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I'm in the process of looking at brewing apps/programs. I've been using Beersmith for a while now and with BS3 just out, it's time to look at what's available.

On the Beersmith3 thread, someone posted about Brewfather. I had a look at it the other night and really liked the interface - something I hate with BS (it really looks dated and is clunky to use). I've imported a recipe into Brewfather and am going to give it a test run over the weekend.

@fungrel informed me of the following bugs on the BS thread:
  • In the Profiles section, there is no way to delete an equipment profile, or fermentation profile etc. There should be a delete option.
  • I also think a folder structure is required for the recipes to better organise them. Tags is all well and good and very 'modern' but folders are more effective.
  • Is it possible to use unit grams (g) to calculate water correction (instead of just ml) instead?
  • Another minor bug, when I set a yeast starter to 1L, I see 0.26L as the starter volume on the brewing page.
  • Inventory seems to sometimes indicate there is not enough, even when there is. I suspect it's related to using pounds and ounces as units and some rounding issues. If I set to more than the amount in the recipe it's fine. See Maris Otter and Mosaic below.
  • With the latest update my sparge water acid additions have started to behave weird sporadically. I have yet to figure out if it is changing the target profile or pressing the auto button that makes the sparge acid amount drop to 0 and no matter what I set the sparge water volume to it just stays at 0
  • Not sure what I'm doing wrong, but Brewfather seems to suggest I do a no sparge setup, however, it seems to calculate water additions for some amount of sparge. It seems like setting the Water/Grain ratio in the equipment profile would let Brewfather calculate the amount of strike water and then also sparge water (I batch sparge).
None of these are deal breakers for me and from what I hear/read, the developer is pretty quick to fix bugs anyway.

I figured it would be cleaner to start a new thread about Brewfather and not derail the BS thread. Is anyone here using Brewfather? What are your thoughts? Looking forward to hearing from Brewfather users.
 

chesl73

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How were you able to import a recipe? You need premium - have you already bought it?
I’ve been using it a bit as well recently. My thoughts are:
- It is very easy to use and intuitive
- The main thing I like is the web based aspect that allows me to tinker with recipes whether I’m at home, at work, on the train etc.
- The logic is pretty much the same as BeerSmith, ie, setup your equipment profile, your mash profile then create a recipe so easy to use
- The water and salt adjustements are very easy to use and integrated well into the recipe and the PH estimates seem reasonable (compared to BrunWater)
- There are some bugs but as you say, they aren’t show stoppers

- I think given the tool is officially in Beta that it is expensive
- I already own BeerSmith 2, there is nothing in BeerSmith 3 that is worth me paying for
- Overall it’s good and if I didn’t own any brew software then I’d probably license it
- My problem is that at the end of the day, it just does the same thing that BeerSmith does, yes it’s prettier and web based but it just does the same thing so therefore I might as well just keep using BeerSmith 2
 

S.E

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How were you able to import a recipe? You need premium - have you already bought it?
Just had a look at the website https://docs.brewfather.app/ .

Says “Brewfather can be used for free as long as you want with a few limitations. New users are granted a free 24-day membership of Brewfather Premium with no limitations”.
 

ABG

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How were you able to import a recipe? You need premium - have you already bought it?
Thanks for the feedback. As @S.E said above, “Brewfather can be used for free as long as you want with a few limitations. New users are granted a free 24-day membership of Brewfather Premium with no limitations”.
 

chesl73

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It can be used ‘for free’ yes but you can’t import/export and you can only have 10 recipes so not practical long term.
 

ABG

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I imported a recipe no worries. The free version isn't practical long term - that's precisely why I'm asking others what they think of Brewfather. I'm thinking of pulling the pin and subscribing, but want to hear some first hand accounts from guys already using it.
 

ABG

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Try 'Wort' , it's free and you can create, import/export as many recipes as you like.
Cheers mate. I'll have a look at that for next week's brew. Have you used Brewfather? How does Wort compare?
 

EalingDrop

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Had a play with Brewfather, and it's ok, but I prefer an actual app on my phone on brew day.

I like simple interface and I like to keep records which helps me refine my skills over the years. I've got all my recipes backup to my Dropbox right from the beginning, it's got a notes section for esoteric observations of the brewday which helps me refine my system and impressions on the beers.
 

ABG

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Had a play with Brewfather, and it's ok, but I prefer an actual app on my phone on brew day.

I like simple interface and I like to keep records which helps me refine my skills over the years. I've got all my recipes backup to my Dropbox right from the beginning, it's got a notes section for esoteric observations of the brewday which helps me refine my system and impressions on the beers.
I thought Brewfather can work on a phone, but not sure. I use an iPad.

Like you, I keep all my old notes as reference for future improvements. The only difference is to date, I've been using Evernote in conjunction with Brewsmith. Brewfather looks like it might be able to manage all that for me, but I haven't pressure tested it on brew day yet. Tomorrow is its first outing...
 

Milhouse

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Try 'Wort' , it's free and you can create, import/export as many recipes as you like.
I agree Wort is fantastic for a free app. I too like having the app on my phone on brew day and being fairly new to using brewing software I like the simplicity.
 

f00b4r

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Brewfather works on a phone and offline as it gets cached.
I posted some more info on the Beersmith thread and am a happy user but have never used Wort. I would give each a run and see what your think.
 
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ABG

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Cheers @f00b4r . I'll give it a trial run tomorrow and see how it goes.
 

ABG

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@lonte I read your post on the BS3 thread. Care to comment where you think Brewfather is lacking compared to BS3? I'd really appreciate your thoughts.
 

chesl73

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I had a brief look at Wort... It looked more like a loose collection of brewing calc tools rather than proper integrated brewing software
 

Milhouse

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I had a brief look at Wort... It looked more like a loose collection of brewing calc tools rather than proper integrated brewing software
I think this is a pretty apt description. Good for building recipes and getting estimates (colour, ibu's, og etc) and comparing to style guidelines.

For me and potentially others it was a great introduction of the capabilities of brewing software, without functionality that some wouldn't use/find confusing, a big bonus being that it's free.

For this purpose I would highly recommend recommend it. I wouldnt recommend it for someone who is used to using beersmith or the like.
 

lonte

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@lonte I read your post on the BS3 thread. Care to comment where you think Brewfather is lacking compared to BS3? I'd really appreciate your thoughts.
  • Shopping list
  • Folders (or more flexibility with tags)
  • Calendar View (or better, Google Cal integration - which I know BS doesn't have either)
  • Ability to enter field values in other units
  • Maybe some other stuff if I thought long and hard
Not much really - I've used it exclusively for the last seven brews so it is not lacking in the essentials.
 

ABG

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  • Shopping list
  • Folders (or more flexibility with tags)
  • Calendar View (or better, Google Cal integration - which I know BS doesn't have either)
  • Ability to enter field values in other units
  • Maybe some other stuff if I thought long and hard
Not much really - I've used it exclusively for the last seven brews so it is not lacking in the essentials.
Thanks @lonte. I used it for the first time in anger today during a brew day and was really impressed. It took me a little while to work out how it all functions, but by the end of the day I was pretty confident using it. Brewsmith on the other hand took me about 4 or 5 brew days to feel like I was comfortable. I'm still sitting on the fence here, but will give Brewfather another run during next week's brew.
 
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I heard about Brewfather a couple of weeks ago, around the same time that I was trialling Beersmith 3 with the intention of most likely upgrading from BS2 to BS3.

I'd always found BS2 to be rather clunky and bloated and some Add-Ons and inputs didn't really seem to do anything and the water profile tool was pretty much useless. What I was hoping for with BS3 was a bit of a re-design. A new interface, more user friendly, more intuitive, etc but from my brief trial of it, that hasn't happened. Even though the changes seem to be a vast improvement on BS2.

So far my experience with Brewfather is that it has a cleaner, more intuitive interface, it's not as cluttered or bloated as BS. Being a new programme, there will no doubt be a few bugs to iron out and the designers, ( from Finland I think) are keen to get feedback from users if there are any issues, so that they can fix them straight away.

I'm really looking forward doing a few batches using it and possibly flicking BS.
 

chesl73

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So I've been trialing Brewfather the last few weeks for a couple of brews alongside my copy of Beersmith.
I've found Brewfather to be really good software, a great implementation and very easy to use. Having it available and easy to use on everything from a laptop to a mobile phone and it all syncing has been brilliant. I've been tinkering with recipes at work and it just looks like I'm on any old website ;)
I joined the Brewfather facebook group and had a few conversations/questions directly with the developer who was responsive and helpful. And of course the beauty of it being a web application is he's constantly improving features, fixing bugs and putting out newer versions/releases which you just can't do with a Windows based application.
So today I paid my money and upgraded to the premium version and have now ditched Beersmith. It's a shame in a way because Beersmith started with me on my brewing journey but as someone else said previously, it's so far had very little competition but now with Brewfather I think it has a real challenge on its hands as Beersmith now is dated and clunky and the Windows/thick client nature of its deployment inherently makes it slow and unresponsive to improvements and changes.
So I'm moving on with Brewfather.

Cheers
 
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