Friday, July 16, 2010

Why Make Beer?

I started making my own beer when I was around 20. After a summer spent backpacking around Europe with my then-boyfriend now-husband, I had fallen in love with many European brews but first and foremost, the English bitter.

Back home in Canada, there were few places to have real pints of bitter. There were a few local British-style pubs, but pints were exorbitantly expensive, even then. The beer stores carried a tiny selection of bitters but they never lived up to their potential. If I was going to enjoy English ale on a regular basis, I was going to have to make my own.

Beermaking, for me, was an addiction. It was an easy road from making a quick batch from a beer kit to buying extra equipment, roasting and grinding my own grains, and even growing my own hops. I was hooked. And soon, I was making beer styles from around the world.

Making my own beer gives me the same feeling as when I put up 50 quarts of tomatoes or dehydrate cherries. It's a step towards self-sustainability and another way that I can contribute to providing for my family the same way women have for a millenia. And where else can you get roasted cherry oatmeal stout?