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At a Glance: Microbrewing

How do you make your own beer?

Microbrewing requires a great deal of involvement from the brewer. To give you an idea of what goes into craft beer, we asked Jaime Fanlo of Pedro Brewcrafters to give us a simplified rundown of what goes on in a typical brewing process. While the devil is in the details, as it were, he explained that the mechanical process is relatively straightforward with the right equipment and know-how.

No trade secrets here, though! We won’t spoil how Jaime works his magic, but you are welcome to revisit our feature where he and his wife Nadine recount how Pedro Brewcrafters got to where it is today.

And now, the process!

1. Crush your preferred malt for hand-pouring into the hopper, where it waits for delivery into the mash-and-lauter tank.

2. Mix your prepared water with the malt in the tank.

3. Balance the temperature of the mixture in the tank to get the right combination of fermentable sugar, which turns into alcohol, and unfermentable sugar (dextrins), based on the recipe you want.

4. Let the mixture sit for an hour so that the enzymes can do their work.

5. Filter the liquid again atop and through the resulting malt bed to get clear wort.

6. Transfer the wort into a kettle-and-whirlpool combination tank.

7. Add spices, hops, and aromas as desired for the recipe while boiling for around an hour.

8. Cool down the beer to an acceptable temperature via a heat exchange system that also yields usable hot water that you can save for another brewing batch (as in step 2).

9. Pump the beer into cylindro conical fermenters and pitch the yeast.

10. Hand the process off to God for about two to four weeks.

11. Carbonate the resulting beer for a few more days.

12. Bottle or keg the beer for distribution.

If you’d really like to know more, you’re welcome to ask the head brewer himself at the Pedro Tap House!