FAQ

What is Brewbarrel?

The Brewbarrel is the fastest and easiest way to brew your own beer. With just a few steps you come to successful brewing. With the step-bye-step instruction and the perfectly weight-up ingredients you just need about 10 minutes until your beer is ready to ferment.


What’s special with Brewbarrel?

Let’s face it: Home brewing is complicated – until now! With Brewbarrel you get customised beer in a five litres keg as a home brewing kit combined with an innovative and easy brewing process you become a master brewer yourself within minutes.


Why is brewing with Brewbarrel so much faster than in a brewery or with other home brewing kits?

For Brewbarrel we completely rethought the process of home brewing. Currently most approaches for home brewing use the same processes than conventional breweries, only on a smaller scale. We thought, that it should be possible for a small scale to allow a unique approach. Therefore we went back to the drawing board and reinvented the process of home brewing. The two main innovations to make home brewing faster and easier are to brew directly in the keg and to brew under pressure.


What is the scope of delivery of a Brewbarrel home brewing kit?

All Brewbarrel brewing kits contain specific components: the empty five-liter keg as a fermentation tank, step-by-step instructions, the pressure control valve, three drip mats, and all necessary ingredients to brew five liters of your favorite beer. These include around 650 g - 750 g of malt extract, 9 ml of hop extract, and 4 g of yeast. If you order a customized brewing kit, you will of course additionally get the flavors of your choice.


Do I need any additional equipment to brew beer with Brewbarrel?

No, everything is included. You only need to add water. One part of the water needs to be boiled so in fact you need something to boil water (for example a pot and a stove). But we assume this should be on hand.


Which water should I use for the fermentation?

You can use tab water if it’s clean. But if there is chloride in it, or much chalk you should use bottled water without carbon dioxide. In any case you should use the scale on the malt extract bottle to measure the water. It’s very important to use the right amount of water. If you are not sure if your tab water contains chloride ask your water company or use bottled water to be on the safe side. Chloride is added to the tab water in some regions to prevent the spread of bacteria. The same mechanism of action which prevents bacterial growth would also prevent the yeast from fermenting your beer.


Does the Brewbarrel fit inside my refrigerator?

With its external dimension it’s exactly like a normal five litres party keg. The dimension of the keg are optimized so that it fits to most regular refrigerators. The dimension are: height 27 cm (10.6 in) and diameter 18 cm (7.1 in).


How long does it take until I can enjoy my beer?

After one week your beer is ready fermented and you can enjoy your home brewed beer! The beer has to ferment for five days at ambient temperature. For proper fermentation the temperature is crucial. We recommend to keep the Brewbarrel at temperatures between 19° and 21° C. After the fermentation your Brewbarrel has to rest for two days in the fridge. We consider it as very important that the beer will be ready within one week as this makes it much easier to brew your own beer on demand. For example, if you want to invite your friends for a BBQ next week, you know exactly when you have to start to brew. So it is very easy to brew exactly the right beer for any occasion.


What alcohol amount do I get with Brewbarrel?

The alcohol amount depends on the beer type and ranges between 5,0 and 6,5%. Due to temperature and other factors the alcohol amount may vary a little bit.


Why is the beer more cloudy than the beer in the bottle?

The Brewbarrel beer is as natural as possible. This means, that there is no technical treatment applied to your beer. Usually breweries use either chemical or technical filtration to make the beer crystal clear. By this a lot of the natural flavour components of the beer are lost as well. Also the Brewbarrel beer is not pasteurised and therefore as fresh as possible.


How long is the ready fermented beer edible?

Your beer is durable for about two to four weeks after the fermentation time as long as it is kept refrigerated all the time. During the storage in the fridge the beer will be naturally cleared and during some maturation processes gain new flavour components. So it’s no problem to keep it longer in the fridge as the minimum two days. It will only become clearer and develop a more harmonic taste.


How fast should I empty the keg after opening the Brewbarrel?

After you first released the pressure you should drink your beer within a few days. Even though you can reseal the barrel by turning the pressure control valve after the initial opening there will be oxygen in your beer. Like with wine oxygen will also alter the colour and taste of beer. Therefore you should keep the beer refrigerated and finish your barrel within a few days.


How durable are the ingredients?

When you receive your Brewbarrel the ingredients have at least a minimum durability of six months. Please store the Brewbarrel ingredients on a cool and try place. Especially keep them away from direct sunlight and heating. All ingredients have their own best before date. Please check this before brewing.


Do I have to pay alcohol taxes with Brewbarrel?

The Brewbarrel itself does not contain any alcohol. But please inform yourself about the regulations in your country and state on home brewing and if you have to pay taxes for home brewing. Usually your local home brewing association can be very helpful in answering this questions.


Do I have to pay refund for the Brewbarrel?

There’s no refund on the Brewbarrel. You can just throw it away. It’s good for recycling so you can give it to your local recycling system.


During fermentation foam is escaping from the pressure control valve. Is this good or bad?

This can happen during the first days of fermentation. In the first days there is a lot of sugar and the yeast is growing exponentially. Therefore the yeast is very active and produces a lot of CO2. Due to this a lot of foam will rise. Some of this foam may escape with the overpressure through the pressure control valve. This is no problem at all. Indeed it is a sign that your yeast is healthy and your beer on the way to becoming very delicious. After a few days there should be no more foam escaping through the pressure control valve.


Can I reuse my Brewbarrel to brew another batch?

Unfortunately this is not possible. With Brewbarrel we want to make sure that every beer will become a delicious success. As cleaning and hygiene is key for successful brewing we do not recommend to reuse the Brewbarrel. It is very difficult to really get the barrel clean and therefore it is indeed easier to recycle your old one and buy a new set.


How did you simplify this process with Brewbarrel?

The Brewbarrel beer is brewed in a single-step process directly in the keg. Firstly this has the advantage, that the Brewbarrel keg is already aseptic. So no cleaning is necessary. Furthermore we developed a pressure control valve. During fermentation, the yeast converts the malt sugar into alcohol and carbon dioxide. The valve regulates the pressure during this process. This is necessary in order to bring in just the right amount of naturally arising carbon dioxide as sparkling carbonation in your beer while also preventing overpressure within the keg. This is an approach which is only suitable under small scale conditions. Big breweries can’t brew this way as it would be very difficult to maintain the pressure in a big vessel. Brewing under pressure also stabilizes the fermentation and is one method of reducing unwanted by-products.


What exactly is the difference between brewing with Brewbarrel and conventional brewing?

Normally the beer has to be transferred after the fermentation either in bottles or in a keg for storage and carbonation. The storage usually requires several weeks and is necessary to remove unwanted by-products like fusel alcohols. These by-products are generated if the conditions for the yeast are not perfect. During storage the yeast has no sugars to ferment and will therefore metabolize most of the by-products. With Brewbarrel we selected special yeasts and malts to provide the best fermentation conditions possible. This prevents the formation of unwanted by-products in the first place. For carbonation breweries usually add either sugar or carbon dioxide during storage to carbonize the beer. This is not necessary with Brewbarrel as the pressure control valve keeps just enough of the natural arising carbon dioxide during fermentation. For us it is very important to leave the beer as natural as possible. Therefore in contrast to most big breweries the beer doesn’t undergo any technical treatment like pasteurization or filtration. During the cooling period in the fridge the yeast settles on the ground and the beer is naturally filtered. We want the beer to stay as fresh and natural as possible.


Which other measures did you take to speed up the brewing process?

First of all we put a lot of effort into finding yeasts which can ferment fast and without producing unwanted by-products. The production of by-products is biochemical process and is due to a process which seeks equilibrium between several factors. So you can either try to remove by-products later (what most breweries do) or try to prevent the formation in the first place. For breweries the last one is very difficult due to the big scale. We put a lot of effort into finding the right combination between fermentation conditions and yeast so the beer is fermented very fast and tastes delicious. For example we have figured out special ways of preparing the malt and the wort for Brewbarrel so that the yeast finds the best conditions (nutrients) for fermentations. Another important point is the fermentation temperature. As all reactions in biochemistry, the fermentation of sugar to alcohol depends on the temperature. As Brewbarrel works with ambient temperature so we have a faster brewing process in general. But a faster brewing process in the wrong conditions would also mean more by-products and undrinkable beer. Therefore the tricky part was to find the right yeast that can ferment in ambient temperate without producing unwanted byproducts. When we were developing the Brewbarrel concept we were screening hundreds of different yeasts together with different malts to find the most suitable yeast-wort combinations. This was the most work intensive part of the whole product development.


What is the target group for Brewbarrel? The experienced home brewer or the novice?

With the Brewbarrel we want to create an easy solution for everyone who has always thought about home brewing but never had the time to undergo all the efforts necessary. Usually you have to buy a lot of equipment and make yourself familiar with the techniques behind home brewing. Also you have a lot of cleaning effort and mostly the first batches of your home brewed beer are not so delicious. With the Brewbarrel we are offering an opportunity for everyone to brew beer with very little effort. You just create your beer online, get all ingredients already weighed and have an easy step-by-step instruction and a guaranteed brewing success. We want brewing to be likable and fun and by this open home brewing to a much wider audience. Mainly Brewbarrel is considered for people who are just interested in home brewing or want to try new beer varieties easily. Of course it can also be interesting for experienced home brewers to easily try new recipes with little effort. For those who want to get deeper into homebrewing we also offer some of the Brewbarrel ingridients via the Brewbarrel Professional Line.


How can you guarantee that every beer brewed with Brewbarrel will be a success?

We not only eliminated all unnecessary and complicated steps of home brewing. We also removed the most common sources of error. The most critical steps for the success of home brewing are hygiene and the recipe. As we provide all equipment, we can guarantee that everything is properly aseptic and remove the possibility of contamination or unwanted by-products normally due to not properly cleaned equipment. Also we simplified the creation of the beer recipe with our easy-to-use web interface. So everyone can easily create his or her own beer and we take care that all ingredients are properly weight and conditioned suiting the recipe. Also we’ve optimized the entire procedure, so neither the water you use nor the fermentation temperature can seriously alter the final result.