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Brewing Classic Styles: 80 Winning Recipes Anyone Can Brew Paperback – October 25, 2007
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Title: Brewing Classic Styles
Author: Zainasheff, Jamil/ Palmer, John J.
Publisher: Natl Book Network
Publication Date: 2007/11/01
Number of Pages: 317
Binding Type: PAPERBACK
Library of Congress: 2007029472
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--These recipes are award-winners, which means that the judges chose them over others. That means they got the judge's attention, which means they tend to push the boundaries of the style to get that attention. You will want to look to the BJCP style guidelines if you are trying to hit somewhere more in the middle of the style.
--The recipes focus on extract, with substitutions for all-grain brewers. I brew with grain, not extract, and so it is extra thinking to substitute grain for extract. But I know that 80% of those who brew use extract, so I don't blame the authors for focusing on that.
--As with almost every brewing book, the reader may not pay attention when the authors say "Ferment at 50 degrees" or something like that. But the secret is to do exactly what it says: control your fermentation and hold it precisely where it tells you to. One sentence can't convey the importance of that.
All that doesn't take away from the value of this book. It will make a great addition to any home brewer's library.
I was recommended this book, and am really pleased with it. Palmer provides the technical details for things like amount of priming sugar to add to achieve a certain level of carbonation, and how large of a yeast starter to make, and Zainasheff provides information about what to keep in mind when brewing a certain type of beer, as well as at least one recipe for each type. Each recipe has both an extract and all-grain method, as well as information about mashing, the type and amount of yeast to use, and fermentation temperature and duration.
I'm impressed by the range of recipes in this book. You might not find a recipe for the "Jalapeno-coffee stout" you really want to make, but there will be enough information and instruction in this book for you to figure it out and produce something decent. For instance, I really wanted to make a blueberry blonde ale. This book didn't have that recipe, but it did have a blonde, and it had instructions in the fruit beer section on how to make a fruit beer. I used the blonde recipe, followed the fruit instructions, and made an amazingly good beer. I'm really impressed with it.
Other recipes from this book I've tried without modification, and all have ended up stellar. My favorite so far is the Special/Premium Bitter. Fantastic beer.
If you're looking for a recipe book, I'd recommend this one. If you're looking for something on the mechanics of brewing, I recommend "How to Brew" by Palmer.
As for the recipes, they are broken into chapters by beer style. Each chapter provides a brief introduction to the style, and 2-3 recipes. These recipes provide fairly detailed instructions and ingredients list, however some of the terminology might confuse the novice brewer. The recipes are good by themselves, but I personally find them as useful references when developing my on recipes. Its a great starting point to brew the beer as introduced in the book, then fine tune to your personal taste. Its important for up and coming brewers to learn creativity though, so I would advise new brewers to not be afraid to try something that maybe doesn't seem "right" or match up with a specific style or recipe, because that is how you learn about flavors (and the beer will probably still turn out well).
Overall, I would say this is the quintessential recipe & style guide for homebrewers. It offers a good amount of recipes covering a breadth of styles. It is a handy reference when brewing and is most useful, in my opinion, for developing your own recipes.
Most recent customer reviews
The book has a small introduction full with information and tips, no “fluff”.Read more