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Everything You Need to Know About Ulsan

Sick of Hite? Brew your own!

By Derrick Langeneckert

Are you sick of drinking Hite, Cass or OB?  Do you spend the 12,000W on a six pack of Heineken?  Are you tired of seeing your friends on Facebook drinking real beer at bars back in the US or Canada?  Has it been 3 years since you had your favorite IPA, Stout, Porter, Pale Ale, Belgium style?

Fret no more.  Make your own beer!

How do you make beer you ask?  Is it hard?  No, if you can make soup, you can make beer in your own home with minimal start up cost.

Making beer is not very difficult.  The ingredients required are barley, hops, yeast and water.  In the US and Canada, homebrewers typically make a 5 gallon batch.  This will give you about 2 cases of homebrew.  Depending on the style, you will need about 10lbs (5kg) of barley, and a few ounces of hops to make your beer.

Equipment you need:

1)   5 gallon pot

2)   sieve

3)   6 gallon bucket/fermenting vessel with a lid

4)   air lock

Steps in making beer:

1)   Put your 10lbs of grain in a bucket and add 170F water.  This water will activate the amylase enzyme in the barley to convert the starch in the grain into sugar to feed the yeast.  Yeast converts sugar into ethanol (alcohol) and CO2, which bubbles off.  This part is called “the mash” and will last 1 hour.  During the mash you should stir your barley soup as often as necessary, most people stir their mash every 15 minutes.

2)    Next, pour your barley soup through the sieve to remove all the sugary tasting water.  This should give you about 2-3 gallons of wort.  Wort is the sugar water that you add the yeast to.

3)   Put the spent grain back into the bucket and cover the grain with hot water.  This is called the spardge.  You want to rise all of the grain to remove all the sugars possible.   Spardging should give you another 2-3 gallons for a grand total of 4-6 gallons.

4)   Next, pour the wort into your 5-6 gallon pot and get it up to a boil.  When your wort us up to a boil it is time to add the hops.  Generally brewers add hops at three different times during the 1 hour boil.  The first addition is usually about an ounce.  This will give your beer its bitterness.  This bittering hops will boil for the entire hour.  Next, when there are 15 minutes left in the boil you should add flavor hops.  These hops will give you a fruity or citrus flavor.  Finally, where there are 5 minutes left in the hour long boil add your aroma hops.  This will give your beer its smell.

5)   When the hour long boil is finished you must cool the wort to below 80F to add the yeast.  Adding yeast to wort is called “pitching”.  I suggest, put a lid on your pot and wait over night for the beer to cool.

6)   In the morning, pour the wort into a sterilized bucket, pitch the yeast, put the lid and the airlock on the bucket and wait 2 weeks.  You will notice bubbles coming out of the airlock after 24 hours.  This means the yeast is actively making alcohol.

7)   After two weeks it is time to bottle your beer.

Being an avid home brewery myself and contemplating coming back to Korea, I worry about the availability of beer and beer making supplies in Korea.  I did my research and found a Korean Homebrew club that sells ingredients and offers advice on a forum specific for Korean homebrewers.  Don’t worry, the website is in English.  From the looks of it, its full of expats sick and tired of Soju and Cass.  Check it out and get to brewing.