A Primer on Home Brewing

A beer lover’s guide to getting crafty
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The trick to trying out the most micro of brews

Beer geeks live to brew—and to share their wares. But unless you know someone who ferments beer, sniffing out a sample can be tough. Commercial establishments are barred from serving the homemade stuff. Your best option: Attend a class or club meeting (see “One-Stop Hopping”). And look for Samuel Adams’s LongShot Variety Six-Pack, which features recipes from its annual home brew contest; winners (two civilians and one Samuel Adams employee) are named each October, with the six-pack arriving in spring. In 2012, an American-style wheat beer from Bellflower’s James Schirmer, an institutional researcher at the University of La Verne, made the cut. His secret ingredient: hibiscus. —Matthew Segal


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A flight of home brew stores and the clubs that love them

HOME BEER, WINE, AND CHEESEMAKING SHOP
22836 Ventura Blvd., Woodland Hills, homebeerwinecheese.com

The business that John Daume founded 42 years ago is hallowed ground (above). After all, it’s where the country’s oldest beer club began and continues to hold meetings. Club affiliation: Maltose Falcons.

EAGLE ROCK HOME BREWING SUPPLY
4981 Eagle Rock Blvd., Eagle Rock, brewsupply.com

Aside from getting advice (classes are available) and all the essentials, you may come across meisters from Eagle Rock Brewery (L.A.’s first brewery in decades when it opened in 2009) or Lancaster’s Kinetic Brewing. Club affiliation: Yeastside Brewers.

CULVER CITY HOME BREWING SUPPLY
4234 Sepulveda Blvd., Culver City, brewsupply.com

Open since 1994, it shares two owners with Eagle Rock Home Brewing and offers classes. Club affiliation: Pacific Gravity.

SOUTH BAY BREWING SUPPLY CO.
1311 Post Ave., Torrance, southbaybrewingsupply.com

Torrance has become a hotbed for new craft breweries, but it’s also rich with home brewers. Club affiliation: Strand Brewers Club. —Randy Clemens


Also: Read “On the House,” Randy Clemens’ profile of the L.A. home brewing club The Maltose Falcons

Typography by Daniel Pelavin

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