Tuesday, April 12, 2011

Homebrewing Class Structure

I've received requests for the syllabus of my five week brewing course that I teach here in California. I want to make the course available to those that would like to duplicate the system that I use by publishing the hand-outs that I provide the students when conducting the classes. These hand-outs contain all of the information that is covered during the classes, but it is up to the teacher to bring the experience, knowledge and confidence in brewing to the equation to make the class successful.

The plan I've developed is a comprehensive course from the beginning brewer level and then builds on that information to the advanced methods of homebrewing. I have spent some time developing the curriculum and over the years, have honed it down to a very usable process and I feel it is complete at this point in time. I want to make it available to anyone interested in teaching a brewing class in this format or using the information to develop their own criteria. Keeping in mind that I use my own personal brewing procedures when teaching this class, the instructors that utilize this information may need to modify it to suit their particular brewing style.

Students taking a break
The idea is to engage the students with hands-on utilization of equipment and ingredients used for homebrewing. The outline that follows, lays out the basic agenda I use to give the students the tools they need to begin brewing at home with confidence and also provides an opportunity for them to test the waters so to speak without having to make the initial investment in equipment and ingredients. During the course of these lesson the students participate in brewing four batches of beer (25 gallons) of which three are ready to sample by the final day of class.

As you can see from the student outline, we begin the process with extract only, followed by partial mash and finally the all-grain methods and kegging. This outline gives a clue as to the methods I use to teach the class.

Student Course Overview.

Class 1.
Introduction to extract brewing
  1. Sanitation
  2. equipment
  3. ingredients
  4. brewing demonstration
Class 2.
Partial mash Brewing and packaging
  1. grain conversion
  2. yeast types
  3. hop varieties
Class 3.
Partial mash brewing cont. and packaging
  1. grain conversion
  2. yeast propagation
  3. hop utilization
  4. packaging
Class 4. 
All-grain brewing
  1. equipment set-up
  2. mashing
  3. history
  4. recipe formulation
  5. basic water chemistry
Class 5.
Results and tasting session
  1. beer evaluation and review
  2. kegerator explanations
  3. beer and food pairing
If you are interested in obtaining the complete course material, you can place an order through the PayPal form located on the side bar of this page, or send me an email with questions regarding this post. Cheers!

7 comments:

Russ Tarvin said...

Sounds so cool, too bad I am in Oceanside. I hope you have fun.

Stanley Glass said...

You should come to Tampa, Florida to do a class. I'll be the first to sign up.

Beer Diary... said...

Hi Stanley,
If someone were to foot the bill, I'd travel anywhere to teach brewing.

Home Brew said...

Nice post!!! full of knowledge "how to brew?". Thanks and keep sharing like sort of information with us.

Anthony said...

How long are your classes? 8 hours?

Beer Diary... said...

Hi Anthony,

The introductory (malt extract) class lasts about 4 hours and the advanced (all-grain) class is about 7 hours. Give or take a half hour depending on how involved the students get. The all-grain class is longer because of the need to mash and sparge, both add about an hour and then there is the extra brewing science that is covered. I will be teaching one day courses at Cabrillo College and West Valley Community College this spring. I may also be teaching at 'Lets Cook' cooking school in Soquel. Hope to see you at one of these classes.

Anthony said...

I am actually in Florida and thinking about creating my own beer brewing class in conjunction with my LHBS. Do you have a more detailed course structure available or do you have to purchase that?

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