This is one of two books that came out at the intersection of winter and spring, 2015. Mastering Homebrew was written with the intention to be an all-purpose homebrewing book for homebrewers at all levels, built on the bones of my first book, The Brewer's Companion. Based on what was currently available as well as what I perceived as the unmet needs of the audience, I decided to emphasize an artistic approach to homebrewing, along with with the necessary science.

I asked some of my friends and colleagues in the brewing world to offer their insights on various topics, so the book is peppered with personal statements from many well-known brewers, both amateurs and professionals. One topic that kept coming up was the need to develop skills as a taster, so the book includes an overview of the tasting process as well as a comprehensive vocabulary of flavors found in beer, both good and bad.

This emphasis on flavor led to a very large and comprehensive ingredients chapter, along with some novel ways of organizing ingredients to help tease out their relationships. There is a malt color wheel, and 70 varieties of hops are organized into groups by flavor and ranked according to specific attributes.

When it comes to getting started homebrewing, the book really encourages people to make their own decisions and not simply rely on other peoples' recipes. The starter recipe is called the Amazing Shape-Shifting Recipe, and the new homebrewer can create more than 100 different beers by making alternate choices of malts, hops and yeast within the safe guidelines of the recipe.

There is plenty of information about the brewing process, equipment, yeast, fermentation and packaging.

The recipe formulation section is extensive and encourages brewers to think about every aspect of their intended beer product, and to be deliberate about their recipes and the many choices they must make along the way.

Classic and historical styles are fully described and in many cases charted out visually, making the relationships easier to understand. There are recipes for many of the major styles and some are designed so the brewer can make several variations from the same recipe.

The book then moves into the land beyond styles and presents some recipes inspired by growing homebrewing movements across the planet, including Italy, Denmark, Argentina, Mexico, Brazil and beyond. There are recipes for ingredient-focused beers and others that reflect seasonal inspirations. A detailed section on troubleshooting wraps it up.




In this major new homebrewing guide, author Randy Mosher (Radical Brewing, Tasting Beer) lays out what it takes to create stellar beers at home. Leveraging his wide experience as a homebrewer, lecturer at the Siebel Institute brewing school and now as a creative consultant and partner in several commercial breweries, Mosher has created a comprehensive homebrewing book that will enlighten, entertain, provoke and most of all help you brew fantastic beer.

Beginners will find the basics laid out clearly, with an emphasis on flavor at every turn. Creativity is encouraged right from the start. While most books offer a single dumbed-down starter recipe, Mastering Homebrew presents "The Amazing Shape-Shifting Recipe," which can morph into any of a hundred different beers depending on the choices made by the brewer.

Advanced brewers will find a wealth of information and ideas to increase their understanding of how ingredients and processes affect the flavors in the glass, as well as some unique tools and techniques for building complex, harmonious recipes.

After a brief coverage of brewing terminology, science basics and the characteristics of beer, the book moves on to its biggest chapter: ingredients. Particular attention is paid to the origins of flavor and the unique characteristics of malts and other brewing grains, mapping out their relationships in a malt color wheel. More than 80 varieties of hops are covered in detail, as well as being mapped by flavor affinities, making it easy to see relationships, find alternates, and build recipes. Water, sugar, fruits, spices and vegetables round out the chapter.

The book moves on to the brewing process, equipment, yeast and fermentation, bringing an up-to-date perspective to each. Next is recipe formulation from both a functional and creative point-of-view, with many tools and techniques based on Mosher's experience not only as a brewer, but as a visual artist as well. The recipes begin with classic beer styles and move on to modern craft beer interpretations,  global homebrew, seasonal beers and more. Troubleshooting and resources round out the package.

Brewers at any experience level will benefit from the insightful quotes from many legendary brewers. The creative energy of international homebrewing ripples through the book with recipes from Argentina, Brazil, Italy, Scandinavia, Australia and elsewhere.

It's wide, deep, tons of fun and contains content you'll find nowhere else. Mastering Homebrew is full color, with over 400 illustrations, charts and photographs, enlivened with homebrewer-designed labels and other testaments to the profound creativity and joy shown by the global homebrewing movement.


Foreword by Jim Koch of Boston Beer Co.

Chapter 1: Introduction to Beer

            Quick Start Guide

            About this book

            What's in Here?

            Brewing with Both Halves of Your Brain

            Thinking Like a Scientist

            What to Worry About

            Chemical and Biochemical Concepts

            Brewing Like an Artist

            Getting Started and Getting Better

Chapter 2: Understanding Beer

            Anatomy of a Beer



            Tasting and Evaluating Beer

            Our Senses

            The Tasting Act

            An Atlas of Beer Flavor and Character

            Judging, Competitions, and Certifications

Chapter 3: Brewing Ingredients

            Barley, Malt, and Grains


            Kilning and Roasting

            Malt Types

            Understanding a Malt Analysis

            Unmalted Grains

            Malt Extract

            Roasting and Smoking Your Own Specialty Malts

            Brewing Sugars

            Making Your Own Caramel


            Hops: The Spice of Beer

            Hops’ Form and Function

            Hops in the Brew

            Hop Varieties and Personality Groups

            Hop Varieties in Detail

            Water without Tears

            Brewing Water Minerals in Detail

            Water Minerals and Brewing

            Water Trace Minerals in Detail

            Alternate Ingredients

            Herbs and Spices


            Vegetables and Beyond in Your Beer

Chapter 4: The Brewing Process

            The Amazing Shape-Shifting Beer Recipe

            Your First Beer: Getting Started with

            Extract Brewing

            Extract Plus Steeped Grain Procedure

            Grain Crushing


            The Mash: Magic Porridge

            Enzymes in Detail

            The Mini-Mash Method

            Infusion Mashing for All-Grain Brewing

            Doing It the Hard Way

            Lautering and Sparging

            Additional Sparging Techniques

            Sparging with Recirculating Mash Systems

            The Boil

            What Happens in the Kettle

            Managing the Boil


            Cleaning Up

            Cleaning and Sanitizing Chemicals for the Home Brewery

            Cleaning Your Equipment

Chapter 5: The Brewery

            Safety in the Brewery

            Your System, Your Goals

            Design Considerations


            Grain Mills


            Burners, Flames, and Heaters

            Mash/Lauter Tuns

            HERMS, RIMS, and Direct-Heated Systems

            Grant (Wort Reciever)

            Moving Wort


            Pipe and Tubing Fittings


            Brew Kettles

            Hop Back

            Wort Chiller

            Wort Aeration


            Measurements and Instrumentation

            Packaging Beer

            Bottling Gear

            Keg and Draft Systems

            Firkins, Pumps, and Real Ale

Chapter 6: Yeast and Fermentation

            Yeast in Brewing

            Yeast Biology

            Yeast and the Biochemistry of Beer Flavor

            Yeast Flavor Chemicals in Beer

            Yeast Growth and Fermentation

            Yeast Types

            Wild Yeast: Aliens in Your Brewery

            The Care and Feeding of Yeast

            Pitching Rates

            Wort Aeration

            Yeast Unleashed: Practical Fermenting

            Conditioning and Maturation

            Packaging and Serving Your Beer

            Capping It Off: Bottling

            The Delights of Kegging

            Cellaring Your Beer

            Wood- and Barrel-Aged Beers

Chapter 7: The Art and Science of the Recipe

            Thinking through Your Goals

            Integrating Ingredients and Process

            Record Keeping

            Art and the Brewer

            The Tools of the Art

            Ideas and Inspirations

            Structuring a Beer

            The Numbers Game

            Calculating the Grain Bill

            Hops in the Recipe

            Other Flavorings

            Spices and Seasonings in the Recipe

            Recipe Considerations for Fruit Beers

            Yeast and Fermentation Choices

Chapter 8: Recipes: Styles and Beyond

            Calculations and Assumptions

            Brewing Methods in the Recipes

            About Styles

            A Timeline of Beer History and Technology

            A Brewer’s Overview of Beer Styles

            English Ale, Stout, and Porter

            German Ales, Hybrid Ales, and Weissbier



            New American Classics

            Planet Homebrew





            Nuevo Latina Cerveza en Chicago

            Australia and New Zealand

            Ingredient-Driven Beers

            Herb and Spice Beers

            Creative Fruit Beers

            Vegetable-Flavored Beers

            Screw Styles

            Brewing with the Seasons

            Brewing the Perfect Party Beer

Chapter 9: Troubleshooting

            Ingredients, Recipes, and Brewing

            Yeast and Fermentation Behavior

            Sensory Problems

            Packaging and Serving Problems


            Conversion Scales for Common Units of Brewing Measurement

            Weights and Measures Conversion (U.S./U.K.)

            Glossary of Beer and Brewing Terms

            Further Reading

            Modern Books on Beer Styles and Brewing

            Historical Brewing Texts



            Herbs and Spices Resources



Copy to come...


Copy to come...


Copy to come...


Paperback: 384 pages
Publisher: Chronicle Books (February 10, 2015)
Language: English
ISBN-10: 1452105510
ISBN-13: 978-1452105512
Product Dimensions: 7.8 x 1 x 9 inches
Shipping Weight: 2 pounds

Available in English-language only at the present time. We are currently seeking publishers in other languages, so if you are associated with a publisher of wine or beer books, cookbooks or similar topics, please contact us and we can put you in touch with the appropriate person at Chronicle Books.