Hi, newer brewer here


New Member
Ello, just as a try I made a 1gallon batch of mead, Because I read it was super simple. 4 weeks later it’s finished. Still "green” but absolutely delicious once it hit 1.006 gravity and settled down around 2 weeks after bottling.

Bought a second 1 gal frementer. Currently making a rhotomel and trying a sorrel wine.

Still a little confused when reading beer instructions. So let me confirm please

-grains = sugar food for yeast.

-hops= just make the beer less sweet and add some flavoring things

What I don’t get:

What is the function of malt over just grains ground or cracked?

So, is there something preventing me from using the barley grain from the grocery store in the 2lb bags?


Good place to order hops online as there are no brewing stores near me currently?

Basic hop species that works with most types of beers?

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Dave Greenbaum

South Jersey FC Member
Hi and welcome,

Malted grains are steeped in water so that the grain thinks it's time to grow and convert its starches to sugars. You can start with unmalted grains and malt them yourself, but there's no real advantage to that. If you don't malt grains, the yeast will have no sugar to ferment and you'll end up with grain-flavored water rather than beer.

A local homebrew shop is the best place to get ingredients, both for the convenience of being able to grab something on brew day that you forgot, and also for advice. Where are you located?

The kind of hops you want depends on the beer you're brewing. Before you try to pick one, try brewing an established recipe, such as one in the book Classic Styles by Jamil Zainasheff.