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4.6 out of 5 stars
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4.6 out of 5 stars
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on 25 July 2012
This is a really well written book, jammed full of useful and pertinent information. It's not a book on how to brew but it certainly is a book on how to make better beer. There's a lot of technical detail but equally the historical background information on different beer styles is very well researched and really interesting.
I'm pretty new to brewing but use this book all the time as a reference point and a guide, for me it provides a good launch pad for trying new styles with plenty room for experimentation. As at least one other reviewer has mentioned, the lack of a section on Belgian beers is a shame but there's plenty other books on that subject out there. Highly recommended, a book I will continue to use for many years.
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on 20 April 2011
The book is very interesting and written in a very clear way - even the water chemistry part is made simple. The histories are excellent. The writing style is quite chatty and easy going.
There are a few areas where I feel uneasy about the content, like the use of sugar is mentioned a lot. Just becuase something was done in the past does not make it a good thing. Current brewing practice in the UK is all grain - no brewer would sell another pint if it became known that sugar was in the ingredients.
To echo another review, readers in Europe will no doubt squirm to read that, from an analysis of AHA recipes, you can find out how to brew your regional beer. Bitters being a good example of how not to do it (See page 162 for 10% of recipes using sugar.) Were things so different in 1996?

There is good information in the book, allowing you to tweek recipes. I'm just off have another go at brewing stout after reading it. However, John Palmer is still my secretly adopted Beer Father.

Take the care,

M
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on 1 November 2010
If you are into your mathematical/scientific side of your brewing, then this is the book that you definitely have to get. An outstanding piece of work which covers everything, from the history of each beer style, to how to brew it. The author also carefully includes in his calculations both systems of measurement: the US one, and the metrical system.
In the first section, where the author covers the topic "how to calculate the malt bill", he did not include some fundamental parameters to work out your malt bill using the European system expressed in LDK (Litre Degrees Kilogram). In fact, he only uses the parameters based in US that is pounds per gallons. Obviously, if your maths are sound, it is not a difficult task to adapt some of mentioned formulas converting the units and using a malt analysis from a maltster based in EU.
I would not recommend this book to a person approaching the home brew world for the first time!
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VINE VOICEon 23 June 2010
I am a home brewer and bought this to help me craft my own brews. Its a well thought out and informative book. Its full of details on how to design the beer you want, flavours, aromas, colour etc.

Really worth getting if you are serious about home brewing.
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on 27 April 2014
Exactly what you need, a friendly informal writing style and easy to understand explanations. Definitely worth a read for any home brewer.
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on 9 November 2015
This book is the one you should read way before any other book if you want to be serious about brewing beers.
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on 22 July 2013
very good work and very strong with many answers to anything about brewing thats all folk you must read it
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on 1 December 2013
Essaential reading for home brewers. A little dry at times, but this will take you up to the next level.
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on 21 July 2016
great in depth insight into brewing well worth the money
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on 16 December 2015
A scientific approach to designing beers. Excellent book
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