Anyone can make beer

By Daniel Briseno dnl.briseno@gmail.com
Posted 2/22/21

Alcohol has been around for thousands of years with a variety of civilizations drinking wine and beer — yes, beer — for as long as one can research back into history. The Sumerians even …

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Anyone can make beer

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Alcohol has been around for thousands of years with a variety of civilizations drinking wine and beer — yes, beer — for as long as one can research back into history. The Sumerians even had Ninkasi, the goddess of beer.

As time progressed, beer became the choice drink for many since water was often too polluted for safe consumption. The importance of beer is illustrated by the Pilgrims. We all know the Pilgrims landed at Plymouth Rock, but what is not as well known is why they chose that location. Plymouth Rock was not where they wanted to land, but where they had to stop because if they did not the ship would not have enough beer rations for the return trip.

Throughout the years many people have thought they perfected making beer and believed their beer was far superior to anyone else’s brews. People like Adolphus Busch and David Yuengling went to their graves believing their beers were the best and many people still drink them today.

In today’s world the beer game has changed and is continually changing. Giant companies like AB InBev’s have concentrated on quantity production, which many argue has reduced quality. That is where the microbreweries, like Lot 50 in Paris, come into play. People who love beer and want a quality beverage prefer brewing it on a smaller scale than the large companies that equate quality with pulling in mass customers.

We can take brewing another step away from the microbreweries. Enter the home brewers. These are people who love beer and want to make their own by perfecting the recipe and taste for themselves. 

A quick shopping trip to a local brew shop like For You Brewing Supplies, in Terre Haute Ind., makes it possible for those interested to create tasty, small-batch beverages at home. Whether it be with a propane burner and stainless-steel kettle or one of the new electric brew kettles, anyone can learn to brew beer.

It is not illegal to brew beer at home. The exact law here in Illinois is 235 ILCS 5 / 6- 36. This law exempts homebrewers from obtaining a license or permit to make homemade brewed beverages and

allows an annual production of 100 gallons for a household with one resident 21 years or older, or up to 200 gallons for a household with two or more residents 21 years of age or older, as long as the maker receives no compensation for the homemade brewed beverages.

Another reason for some is cost. After making the initial equipment purchases, which can be pricey, a homebrewer can make beer for a cost of 27 cents a bottle. That price does not include the labor and time involved. Brewing is not for everyone and if not done correctly it can waste lots of money or even result in sickness. 

Beer has been quenching the thirsts of millions of people for thousands of years. Many Americans believe there is nothing better than an ice-cold beer on a hot summer day, but Europeans and Australians prefer cellar temperature, believing that is the best for bringing out the taste. Whether it be a pack of Bud Light from the liquor store, a pint of Winter Ale from Lot 50 or a mug of one’s own recipe, beer is not going anywhere.