Jan 022014

Chris has a knack for coming up with really cool date ideas.  I don’t know where he comes up with them, but really does come up with some cool things for us to do.  Our most recent date was a trip to brew our own beer at Barleycorn’s Craft Brew in Natick, MA.

When we first arrived, they gave us a list of different beers that we could choose from to make.  There are IPA’s, Lagers, Specialty Beers and frankly, just about any kind of beer you can imagine. The list/menu explains what each beer is and I think I’m safe in saying that there were at least 100 different kinds of beers to choose from.  We went with a lager.  It was actually called the Firehouse Lager  and the description on the menu said “Similar to a Sam Adams Lager, but mildly hopped for less bitterness”.  Since Chris was a fire fighter in the military and we both like lagers, it seemed appropriate.

Each beer has it’s own recipe and yes, there are people there to walk you through all the steps.

The first step was for us to measure out our grains.  They told us exactly which ones to use and how much of each to measure out.



Then we had to grind them – and when I say we, I mean Chris.


We then took all of our ground up grains & had to steep them for about 20 minutes.


One that was done, we had to measure out extracts to add into our mix.  Again, they told us exactly how much to measure out.



They were heavy, so here is Chris adding them to the vat.


I stirred.


Then we had to let our concoction boil for a while.


Next up, we had to measure our our hops.  We had to put them in different bowls because we had to add them in at different times.





In case you’re w0ndering, we got this sheet of paper with all of the times on it so we knew when to add what to our pot.


Here we are adding the hops at the specified times:



Once it was done, they helped up pump it out of the vat where it was going to sit and ferment for a few weeks.  Depending on the beer you choose, it had to sit for two or three weeks before you can go back to Barleycorn’s to bottle your beer.


We added some yeast and that it was it for the day.


The beer we chose had to sit for three weeks before we could go back to bottle, label it and take it home.  And I’ll tell ya all about that tomorrow.

The one thing I feel the need to mention if you’re planning on doing this yourself, though, is to bring a book or make sure your phone is fully charged before you go.  There is A LOT of downtime while you’re waiting to measure things or add them in to your brew and there is  no place to wait.  You just kind of have to stand there, so be sure to bring something to occupy yourself.

It was a seriously cool thing to do and if you ever get a chance to do it, go for it.

  65 Responses to “Brewing Our Own Beer”

  1. Not a beer fan here, but my husband is. He may enjoy something like this and will pass it on to him!! 🙂

  2. Any date night that gets you drinking is a good date night

  3. Now that is really cool! I need to tell my husband about this place. I can’t wait to hear how about the second half of your experience tomorrow!

  4. My hubby has brewed his own, we got him a kit

  5. ah
    ahaa baby on lap the kit looks fun

  6. Personally, I’m not a beer fan, but beer brewing and wine making is something my brother does. 🙂

  7. I never liked beer myself, but my husband likes it. He would love making his own beer! This would be fun to do with other couples for something different to do in the long winter. Thanks for sharing it! Happy New Year!

  8. How fun! It’s nice that Chris comes up with these great ideas for you.

  9. Yup. We talked about doing this. Grant LOVES beer. I only like Coors Light myself. It’s very interesting all the steps involved. Great post documenting it all. I look forward to a taste test. I mean your taste test to follow! I’ll bet it’s really good. (I know Grant would love it!)

  10. How fun! My husband would love to do this.

  11. Cool! That looks fun! I’m going to look into it

  12. That’s a neat idea. The grains and hops look like animal food! I wish I liked beer because I would totally be a person who would make my own but I just don’t like it! I like that you leave it there to sit for the 3 weeks and then bottle it with their supervision. It would make me feel better than just doing it on my own!

  13. That is quite the process! I didn’t know all that went into making beer. It definitely sounds like a cool date 🙂

  14. I like thr part where ya said ” By we I mean Chris”
    I dont drink but I am sure lots of my friends would love this.

  15. What a fun activity for you guys to do together. Brian and I have done this before and it was a lot of fun!
    Happy New Year girl!


  16. This looks really interesting! We had a place like this by our house but they went out of business. Another did just open though. Driving by I said to my husband “what the hell is a screwhouse?” Sounded pornographic! Turned out I needed my glasses on since it said brew house haha!

  17. That is way interesting! I don’t drink because of many reasons but mainly religious but I think that those that can make anything themselves is to be commended. I have a friend that created their own brew and it is sold now in Utah and in the Western states, so you never know.

    Thanks for the fun comment about the scarf tie you hope to do. That made my day! ♥

  18. I love how he comes up with all of these creative date ideas! Can’t wait to read the rest of the story!

  19. I am also not a big fan of beer but your every adventure is really rocking.

  20. Your Chris (my husband is also a Chris) has MUCH MUCH better date ideas than mine…the last date we went on was to Olive Garden for lunch on Christmas Eve. LOL!

  21. Fun! Chris looks WAY happy too! LOL

  22. He really does come up the coolest things to do!

    I’m not a beer drinker but it would be so fun to make it and give as a gift.

  23. What a fun date nite idea! We make our own blueberry wine. This looks pretty cool too!

  24. So cool and fun!! My step sister and her hubby bottle their own wine. They hardly even buy from the liquor store anymore. This would definitely be a great date thing…..except, I guess I’d be on my phone and he’d be reading a book. ha!

  25. I do not drink beer but my brother would find this very cool! Neat experiment:)

  26. I don’t normally drink beer but this would be a neat event to do with my husband at least once.

  27. So now that you are a pro… why don’t you try this yourself at home? I know a couple of people who do their own home brew.

  28. My best friend from college owns a microbrewery and the process is amazing! I’m mystified at the variety of flavors you can extract with a few simple tweaks to the formula.

  29. I have some friends that would love to do this. I didn’t even know places like that exist.

  30. This looks like an incredibly fun date and something that my husband would LOVE to do. Wishing you all the best in the New Year!

  31. We don’t have beer here, but I like your posting. It gives me new perspective. Thanks for sharing. I pinned it already.

  32. That sounds like a fun experience!! I am a beer wuss and only like the really light bears, but I still think it would be fun to try brewing it.

  33. We don’t drink but I loved learning about the process. I had no idea how complicated it was.

  34. How cool I am not a beer drinker but to get to brew your own I might can make it taste a little better for my liking.

  35. I don’t drink beer, but I think it would be fun making my own. Though, knowing me, I’d end up with something funky.

  36. Chris looked like he was having a grand old time! I have never liked beer so this is something I probably would never do–but if both parties enjoy a mug–then this is the perfect date!!

  37. This is really such a fun date night idea! I had to laugh at Chris saying any date where you drank was a good date! ha ha!!

  38. I’m not a beer drinker, but this still looks like a really neat date night!

  39. That is seriously so cool! My husband would love that.

  40. 1) you are gorgeous and 2) what a cool date! My BF is so non-creative in that department, haha. His idea of an awesome date is going to a movie down the street, bahha.

  41. Shut up! That looks like so much fun!! I didn’t know that all those steps are needed to make beer!!

  42. how fun i’ve never brewed beer before looks complicate a little

  43. We don’t drink and never will but it looks like you had fun

  44. Gosh! This is very cool! I like this idea 🙂 Looks like you guys had a lot of fun brewing 🙂

  45. Awesome post. My husband has been wanting to brew his own for a while just to see if he could.. Thank you for sharing. Looks like you had lots of fun

  46. I am not a beer drinker, but my father in law tried to brew his own. It exploded. He obviously didn’t do a good job. ha!

  47. my friend ally did this on a date with her then new boyfriend!! such a FUN date idea!!

  48. What a fabulous trip! My husband and I would enjoy brewing our own beer.

  49. Thi seems like a fun idea. It is probably very interesting to make one’ own beer.

  50. I’m glad you said that about the downtime because from all the steps it seemed like you were doing something non-stop!

  51. Wow now that is a great process you have pat down. I’m not a beer person (too bitter for me), but hubby loves bear. Have to show him this.

  52. This looks like a great day. Love a good beer and this looks fun

  53. I like beer … Gord love love loves beer! He used to make his own beer.

  54. So awesome! I’m not a beer drinker. I can kill some Jack Daniels but won’t touch beer, haha! I would still like to go and make some though, looks like fun!

  55. This is my husband’s dream! Maybe someday we will be able to visit this place too!

  56. You guys looks really happy 😉 I know I would be too brewing my own beer. This sounds like fun

  57. I didn’t realize it was so ‘step by step’ I know I can follow directions! My husband is all about DIY food and drink so I know he would love to try brewing his own beer. Thanks for the detailed post!

  58. What a great date idea! My husband and I aren’t really into beer but it would be a fun experience.

  59. My husband used to do it at home himself – for awhile he had all the supplies and would brew his own. I think he misses doing it sometimes.

    looks like a super cool date night 🙂

  60. Looks like a lot of fun! I have a love hate relationship with beer, I like it but it doesnt like me. Id still enjoy the process to make it though.

  61. This is such an awesome date night idea! My husband and I have done a few brewery tours but he would love this!

  62. That’s great that you learn about the whole process!

  63. This looks fun & Chris seems to be in his glory. Future brewmaster’s wife, perhaps?