Tim and I decided that we have time to make a batch of home brew (and maybe even drink it all) before we move north. So today Tim dug the fermenter out of the garage and got started. He's sterilising the fermenting vessel and assorted paraphernalia as I type.

Once the ingredients are combined and the brewing process gets underway, we'll be ready for bottling in a week or so. It will be all hands on deck to sterilise, prime, fill and cap the bottles. A couple of weeks after that, it will be ready to drink :)

We've chosen Coopers English Bitter as this season's beer. In previous years we've made pale ale, wheat beer, stout and ginger beer (mmm, ginger beer). So far we've just stuck to can kits, but maybe in the future we'll get a bit more adventurous.

The fermenter came from my Dad, and I also have a nice little collection of books about home brewing that were his. Dad was a great help the first year that we did a home brew. We also had some help from a friend of Tim's who gave us a bench capper, and got some good advice from our local Brewcraft store.

Home brewing is a very satisfying activity. When you make a batch that comes out just right, it's such a pleasure to share it with friends and tell them that you made it yourself. It's also extremely economical. We recycle our beer bottles, so once you have the basic equipment, each batch only costs about $20 for the ingredients, caps and sterilising compound. It makes 23 litres, which equates to about 60 stubbies (375ml bottles). Once you home brew, you'll never go back!