I have a little bit of experience in making mead, I have a batch to be bottled in a few days. Now, I wanted to try to make beer next, where should I start?

What are the major differences between making mead and beer? I don't even boil my water, I do have a secondary fermentation and I siphon to leave the dead yeast (no filtering).

Bonus: Is there any type of beer that is harder to fail / more likely to be good at the first try?

2 Answers 2


The biggest difference is the boil. Beer requires the wort to be boiled for about an hour with hops added at different points. You should get a good burner or the water will take forever to bring to a boil.

Beermaking steps: 1. Heat water and soak grains 2. Bring water to a boil and add bittering hops and, optionally, malts 3. Boil for an hour, adding flavor hops in the middle, and aroma at the end 4. Cool everything and move it to the fermenter 5. Depending on the beer, add dry-hops.

As for which beer to start with, go for a simple stout or pale ale, depending on your tastes.


I suggest starting with a simple extract recipe, like a Pale Ale, IPA, or a simpler stout as ztk mentions above. If you get into it you can go all-grain, but to start extract brewing is a lot easier and has fewer things to go wrong. You also don't need to worry about racking the beer into secondary (few beers need it), you can rack straight from the fermenter into the bottling bucket.

If you don't have a pot big enough to do a full boil (an 8 gallon pot is the smallest practical size for a 5 gallon batch), you can do a partial boil and add top-up water (don't worry about boiling it) to the fermenter to reach the final batch size.

The free version of John Palmer's How to Brew should answer most of your questions, especially since you're already familiar with fermentation.

Your Answer

By clicking “Post Your Answer”, you agree to our terms of service and acknowledge you have read our privacy policy.

Not the answer you're looking for? Browse other questions tagged or ask your own question.