Useless Brewing Book

Australia & New Zealand Homebrewing Forum

Help Support Australia & New Zealand Homebrewing Forum:

Snow

Beer me up, Scotty!
Joined
20/12/02
Messages
2,349
Reaction score
153
I agree with what Grant Sampson says. Talk to most homebrew shop owners and I reckon you'll find that by far their dominating sales are for kits and dextrose. My local says his biggest sales is for his "crown Lager" pack, closely followed by his "XXXX Gold" pack. Most homebrewers want to make cheap piss that resembles megaswill piss. When they find that a tin of Morgans, Dextrose and a handfull of POR fermented at 26C doesn't give you Crown Lager, then they pull out the real thing when the guests arrive. They might give them a sample of their HB, but they'll find the punters go back to the Crownies pretty quickly. He might have generalised a bit, particularly about the American market, but I reckon he's pretty close to the truth. Homebrew is only just starting a revolution in Australia, alongside a general slow shift in tastes from cheap megaswill beer to "premium" megaswill beer. As such, I would hazard a guess that homebrewers like those that use this forum and Grumpy's forum, who are interested in producing craft beer, are a vast minority. I have met many other homebrewers through different social settings and nearly all of them are amazed that I use liquid yeast, partial mash, control fermentation temps, don't touch kits (other than that ESB I did last month but it was definitely the last one, I promise!) and aerate my wort. When they taste my beer they go on about how fantastic it is, but then say that it's too much trouble for them and they're only brewing to make cheap beer. Not a statistically relevant sample, I know, but to me it indicates a general situation in Australian Homebrewing.

Cheers - Snow
 

Tim

Retro Ghetto Meister
Joined
7/1/05
Messages
549
Reaction score
8
from cheap megaswill beer to "premium" megaswill beer.
I dont really think there is any 'cheap' megaswill anymore is there?? I dont really consider $35+ for a case of VB at the local bottlo cheap!
 

pint of lager

brewing on the verandah
Joined
9/5/04
Messages
2,287
Reaction score
11
I agree wholeheartedly with Snow.

The homebrew market is dominated by supermarket brewers.

It is up to us passionate ambassadors to help the supermarket brewers out when we come across them.

If you can, get the points of temperature control, sanitation and buying better stuff from the HBS across to them, without swamping them with too much info. Give them the address to this website. With those four points, if they have any inclination, they will be on the way.

Sanitation and temperature control are easy stuff to us, but not well explained on the tins.

The people that are after cheap beer to get drunk on will never ever add anything else besides sugar to their beer.
 

Weizguy

Barley Bomber
Joined
20/11/04
Messages
4,589
Reaction score
729
Location
Medowie , NSW
pint of lager said:
I agree wholeheartedly with Snow.

The homebrew market is dominated by supermarket brewers.

It is up to us passionate ambassadors to help the supermarket brewers out when we come across them.

If you can, get the points of temperature control, sanitation and buying better stuff from the HBS across to them, without swamping them with too much info. Give them the address to this website. With those four points, if they have any inclination, they will be on the way.

Sanitation and temperature control are easy stuff to us, but not well explained on the tins.

The people that are after cheap beer to get drunk on will never ever add anything else besides sugar to their beer.
[post="54461"][/post]​
Right on POL. Gather them unto the flock. Testify !!!! :p

Seth
 

RobW

The Little Abbotsford Craftbrewery
Joined
6/8/03
Messages
1,682
Reaction score
109
Right on the money Snow. You only need to spend half an hour talking to your local HBS guy on a Saturday morning & watch what he sells during that time. For every customer that buys grain or liquid yeast there'll be 5 or 6 that pick up a kit or a bag of dex. Then multiply that by a factor of ??? for all the ones who buy at the supermarket or KMart.
 

Wortgames

'Draught' is not a beer style - it's a lifestyle
Joined
20/3/05
Messages
1,679
Reaction score
38
Location
Melbourne & Southern Riverina
OK, maybe I'm being a bit hard on the old git. The fact is, I would have hoped that someone involved in the home / craft brewing industry would have had something a little more positive to say on the subject.

Personally, I think things have changed significantly in just the last few years. There are literally dozens of Australian business now catering to the 'advanced' home brewer. Ingredients and gadgets are a LOT easier to find. I even meet other all-grain brewers in totally unexpected circumstances.

I don't believe for a second that we, the conscientious/skilled 'home' brewer, are in numbers so small as to be negligible. Even K-mart now stocks malt extract to use in place of sugar, and there are an awful lot more options when you do get to your LHBS. As for HBSs in general, well they've always been a tough way to earn a living so a lot of them have probably been guilty of railroading the average brewer into buying their prepackaged product rather than 'brewing free'. The net, as we all know, has changed things significantly so that brewers can actually now buy what they want rather than what they are being sold. Don't get me wrong here, HBSs are and always have been critical in promoting this hobby - but the successful ones are now also catering to a more knowledgable brewer.

As for beer itself, microbreweries and brewpubs are springing up all over the place. Boutique brands are now the major focus of energy for the large brewers. Your average man on the street will no longer fight to the death to defend the honour of his state swill. A few years ago, Michael Jackson (the fat pom, not the skinny freak) was given an appalling reception for describing most Aussie beer as bland and frozen - but the Aussie public is now starting to agree with him, and it's looking for better beer.

I don't think we're the opposite of the States in brewing terms, we're just a couple of years behind.

I now hand this thread back, mostly unharmed and with an apology to its rightful owners :p
 

jayse

Black Label Society
Joined
25/7/03
Messages
3,402
Reaction score
12
Snow said:
Snipped>
.....As such, I would hazard a guess that homebrewers like those that use this forum and Grumpy's forum, who are interested in producing craft beer, are a vast minority.
[post="54450"][/post]​

pint of lager said:
snipped>
The homebrew market is dominated by supermarket brewers.

[post="54461"][/post]​

RobW said:
snipped>
...... Then multiply that by a factor of ??? for all the ones who buy at the supermarket or KMart.
[post="54478"][/post]​
Like I said in the first page of this thread, we are a very insignificant few. Nearly all of the country doesn't even know we exist, but everyones heard of and had a dreadfull home brew before. :ph34r:

Jayse
 

kitkat

Well-Known Member
Joined
10/2/05
Messages
106
Reaction score
0
check out the homebrewandbeer forum for confirmation that all-grainers are a minority :)

Regarding kits, there are progress being made with the 3Kgs pack (or the malt shovel kits for half the quantity), providing an "all in one" approach with better ingredients. Or even with the brewcreaft converter packs - decry them as you may (I won't use them again, bought them for my first brews before I found this and Grumpy's sites), you have to do some boiling with some hops - which can lead to more questions (hops? boiling?) and improvement in technique/receipe, provided the brewer is a minimum curious, and can make him more receptive to advice from the likes of people here.

The ultimate kit being the 15Kgs fresh worts (ESB's and Grumpy's - will it spread?), where you get the taste of all grain with 0 effort except maybe buying a liquid yeast, for about the same price as making up an extract from scratch.

So in terms of balancing costs, time and relative quality of the end product, quite a few kits are not that bad. Not everybody has time (or space) to spend 8 hours on an all grain, and some time even extract brewers may not have 2-3 hours to do the boiling/cleaning/waiting for temperature to drop. Just speaking for myself with a toddler in the house with no shed, I can't get 3 hours undisturbed on the week-end, so I brew in the evenings, and sometimes I just can't be bothered, so a fresh wort pack seems like the ideal solution, for example.
 
J

Jovial_Monk

Guest
Luke mentioned not that long ago that when he started working in HBSs 10 or 12 years ago he was packaging and selling kilo bags of dextrose all day. Now customers want more complex Brew Improver Packs. Our Ozzie Pale Ale pack (75% malt) is our most popular pack.

Things are improving.

Jovial Monk
 

NRB

Well-Known Member
Joined
25/11/04
Messages
1,028
Reaction score
6
kitkat said:
Not everybody has time (or space) to spend 8 hours on an all grain, and some time even extract brewers may not have 2-3 hours to do the boiling/cleaning/waiting for temperature to drop.
8 hours?? Try half that. :blink:
 

Trent

Well-Known Member
Joined
16/6/04
Messages
1,258
Reaction score
2
I would have to agree that all grainers are a real minority. I thought that there would be quite a few around my parts, but I havent really met any except for 3 weeks ago when the owner of the HBS I go to organised for a few of em to come out for drinks on the saturday arvo so I could meet em and talk brewing! the same owner also told me that he only had twelve (from memory) Ag brewers on his computer, and I would consider his shop probably the best in Newcastle (no need to name it). It just made me realise that maybe AG isnt as big as I would have thought, and although I wouldnt know for sure, I would say that 1000 would be a fair, though maybe slightly low, estimate. All the other brewers I have ever met brew as cheap as they can and bottle in old coke bottles, the 1.25 and 2L ones. Each to their own, I guess. I am very happy with mashing, and think I will be aquiring new and shiny things for me system for a long time to come.
All the best
Trent
 

kitkat

Well-Known Member
Joined
10/2/05
Messages
106
Reaction score
0
NRB said:
8 hours?? Try half that. :blink:
[post="54506"][/post]​

"6 to 8 hours" was what the guy doing a demo at the HBS in Maidstone said when I asked how long it took end to end. I'm talking start to all cleaned up and wort in fermenter with yeast.

Maybe you go faster ... an extract for me goes 2-2.5 hours, starting by cleaning/sanitising everything, boiling one hour (takes a bit longer to get to boiling point before that), pour in fermenter, yeast, then clean up everything to leave a clean kitchen. And I haven't started steeping, which would had what, another 30 minutes or so?
 

Latest posts

Top