@lljk to be fair, I think this could be said about a lot of hobbies, but whether that will happen depends on the person more than the actual hobby they choose. To keep it short, if you enjoy beer beyond Bud/Miller/Coors (and that’s not a knock against them, people should drink what they enjoy) and are halfway decent at baking (because it’s less forgiving than cooking a meal, best results tend to come from following the recipe), then you might just be the type who will take pleasure from the process and the result.
A red 5-gal wine kit in a plastic buckets was a huge hit with friends and family. I tried mead once and it took longer than I had patience for. I also make kombucha and have fermented sauerkraut and sourdough. But over the years the most fun I’ve had with brewing is with beer! If you enjoy beer that costs $8 or more for a 6-pack, I recommend starting small and trying a batch of Mr Beer. A gallon is about 12 12-oz pours.
The rule in my house is “only spend CRV money” as a way to control budgets. I took a few years off and I’m just dusting off the equipment and getting back into it. It’s a fun, engaging hobby that really isn’t all THAT expensive (cheaper than kids in Pop Warner football or building racing cars or speedboats) and it parks really well in the garage if life gets in the way!
Right now I have 18 gallons fermenting. I might get this kit (with CRV money!) as a gift for a Christmas gift exchange to see if I can get some of my extended family hooked. There is a healthy online homebrewing community and it’s a fun thing to do “in parallel” with friends. And it squeezes under our $30 gift limit! (Last year the Mota camera drone quadcopter was very popular!)
@chienfou d’oh! Yes. Here in California they impound a nickel for every disposable beverage container you take home, and then give you back some portion of the nickel if you bring the empty container back to an approved, state-sponsored buyback center. As far I can tell, the program is designed to encourage someone to pick through the trash cans at the local filling station and collect all the empty soda bottles. Other states have a similar program but CRV is printed on all the cans and stands for California Redemption Value
@2palms When I was growing up they did bottle deposits. It was an important source of $$ for me when I was in elementary school and wanted to buy books (rememeber those?) from the Scholastic Book Club…
More recently I saw an automated processing center in a Wal-Mart in Oregon that you fed the cans into and then you took the payout slip into the store to redeem.
I also remember reading an article about it being illegal to traffic in CRV materials when they are bringing truckloads of them from out of state…Like this
I find something that seems interesting. Start acquiring just enough stuff that I can start really getting into that hobby.
Then, THEN I start hearing about this new, different hobby. “Oh that’s neat” I say “Maybe I should pick up this thing everyone says is good for getting started in this new hobby.” I think to myself. Knowing that now I’ve started the cycle of picking up that new thing spending more money and time on the new hobby, leaving the old hobby barely started in the dust.
It happens multiple times a year. The tabs I have saved in my browser change. The stuff I research in my spare time changes. I hate it. The only positive to come out of it is I can speak with some kind of knowledge on an oddly wide range of topics.
Home brewing is one of these hobbies I have collected. I have just enough home brewing stuff in my house that it doesn’t really make sense for me to buy this.
Just a warning to others. This is one of those kits that may start your hobby collection. Or if you already have a hobby collection, this is a nice addition to it.
As I don’t like beer, I brew hard apple cider. I’m working on my recipe to try to get it to taste like Angry Orchard Green Apple.
I’m thinking about making some wine out of grape juice. Yes, I know, it won’t win any awards (except maybe for crappiest wine), but at this point I am not going to start with buying and pressing the grapes.
@mml666 I have a kegerator setup for my homebrew beer, so I just force carbonate my cider in a 2 or 5 gal keg with CO2. Nice and bubbly in 2-3 days and no bottles to futz with.
It’s difficult to get a naturally yeast-carbonated cider in bottles that isn’t super dry. The yeasties want to gobble up all the available sugar.
I homebrewed for quite a while but only really did it when I lived in Portland, OR, where I had a good friend/relative to do it with. Now, since I live on the opposite side of the state, I have no one to do it with, nor any motivation to do it either, it’s gone by the wayside. C’est la vie.
I still have my last Mr Beer kit sitting (unopened) in a corner of my office at home. I kept thinking about starting it but didn’t really want to actually make it there and wasn’t sure where else would be a good (temperature stable) space to make it in undisturbed.
On the other hand, in that time I HAVE made several liqueurs including:
and a Ginger Orange that is a Domain de Canton knock off… and very tasty…
Oh… and some Limoncello from the Meyer lemons I grew.
The only time I’ve done brewing at home (and I mean that very loosely) was when I had the Spike Your Juice kit, which reduced the process to an absurdly simple & short process: https://www.amazon.com/Spike-Your-Juice-Kits-Value/dp/B003QVL4SW/
You picked your favorite full sugar juice, poured in the packets, set it up as indicated, then just waited for the process to happen.
I first started by making wine with apple cider pressed from my 8 apple trees. Once that finished I bought a starter kit for making beer with extracts and did about 5 of those kits. Now I have a full electric setup in my basement, installed a stainless utility sink, a small chest freezer for hops, a larger freezer that I’m working on converting into a kegerator. Definitely a money pit, but if you enjoy it it’s worth it!
My boys stole all my brewing gear (and he’s a TON better at it than I ever was). But, I brew Kumbucha regularly in a large mason jar with a cheesecloth over the top, and was looking at getting one of the kits for the nice glass jar (~$17 on Amazon), the beer/wine would be thrown in for ~$5. Should I?
I’ve made several batches using Mr. Beer kit I purchased from Meh a couple years ago. Actually had good luck & made some decent beer. Last batch I used their Octoberfest kit and added some cocoa nibs 2 weeks into the fermentation process & let it sit for 2 weeks before bottling. Called it Choc-toberfest & will be making more shortly. I have placed an order for Mr. Wine kit today (enticing-flecked-bison) so we shall see how that turns out I guess…
My wife and I made wine. Lots of wine. We still have all the stuff too. 5, 6 gallon carboys, tons of empty wine bottles, corks, 3 big fermenting buckets and 3 giant bags of grape juice.
However, it’s not fun. It’s work. I don’t like to work. It was mostly fun in the beginning when we were learning, but now we know all of the steps and it’s just monotonous. The worst part is cleaning everything. It’s so much better to just go to the store.
Maybe I’ll get back into it, but I don’t even drink wine.
Right now I have three gallons of blackberry-mulberry-clover wine and two of blackberry-mulberry-strawberry melomel aging. All the plant ingredients were gathered on our property. I plan to open the first bottles next July.
Long term, I’d like to get a couple of beehives so I can use my own honey as well. And I’ll be planting some hops next spring, though they’re more to sell to a friend than to use myself.