May 02, 2009 12:00 AM
There are many hobbies one can partake in, but Josh Brewer wants to get Kinstonians involved in a particularly tasty one: making your own beer.
In honor of National Homebrew Day - which takes place today - Brewer is encouraging his fellow citizens to help him form a local home brewers' club.
"You just have to have somewhat of a willingness to do it," said Brewer, who will be the Brew Master for the Mother Earth Brewing Co.
Company owners Trent Mooring of Kinston and his father-in-law, Stephen Hill, plan to open a brewery in a building at Herritage and North streets, which housed Stroud's Drug Store and Pulley's Barbecue.
"It's a fun project," Brewer said. "It's going to be a beautiful building when it's done."
In the meantime, Brewer hopes to bring local residents together, regardless of their experience level, to discuss home brewing.
He has been the Brew Master at several brewpubs in the Southeast, and ran his own establishment in Beaufort, S.C. with his wife for several years.
Brewer said beginners can purchase a kit for about $50; the system uses plastic pails.
At his Kinston home, Brewer has taken two metal kegs and an orange water cooler and fitted them with plastic tubes and valves for his setup.
The ingredients, including hops and grain, can be purchased online. The brewing process, which typically takes eight hours, involves mixing the hops and grain with boiling water and then placing it in bottles.
"It's just like being a chef," Brewer explained. "Chefs get to create things and think up recipes."
Home brewers must take care to clean and sanitize all their equipment, including the bottles.
"Or it'll turn into nothing," Brewer said of the finished product. "You won't be able to drink it."
Home brewers can only produce beer for their own consumption. They would have to obtain federal and state licenses and maintain a separate facility if they wanted to sell the beer.
"To start a brewery, we have to jump through a lot of hoops to make it happen," Brewer said.
David Anderson can be reached at (252) 559-1077 or firstname.lastname@example.org.
Original article from Kinston.com