Keeping brew notes

I currently have a small spiral notebook that I write down detailed notes from each batch that I’ve brewed. How do you keep your notes?

Beersmith 2

Being an extract brewing I don’t have a lot of note from brew day. With that said I made a simple spread sheet that I fill in for brew day and while fermenting. When the beer has hit the keg and I have some tasting notes. I spend 5 minutes at the computer and make it all nice. I figure that way if I brew the beer again and it tastes different I have some records of how it went the previous time(s).

Beersmith 2[/quote]

+1 for Beersmith 2. I log a lot of the figures and notes like gravity readings and any surprises into my phone then transfer them to beersmith when I’m done. I log everything I did to make the brew into beersmith including water profile and all salts/acids added, pre-boil gravity, post boil gravity, mash temp, pitch temp, fermentation schedule, dry hop procedure and duration, when and if i harvested the yeast, as well as any issues I may have encountered and how I solved them.

I try to record as much as possible but there are times where i just forget or don’t have time but having that info has helped quite a bit for learning from my mistakes and to help me reproduce a beer that I really liked.

I printout the beersmith report along with the water info I copy from bru’n water for the recipe info. I also made a excel spread sheet that I print out and fill in all the process related things I want to keep note of as the batch progresses. I three hole punch both and put them in a binder.

You hear that noise? That’s the hippies gathering outside your house to protest your murder of trees :wink:


StrangeBrew 1.7

In my head.
Doesn’t always work.

I use Beersmith 2, plus an Excel spreadsheet to keep track of the finer details such as actual mash temp, ferm temps, specific times and dates of racking, kegging, bottling, etc.

I use a spreadsheet that gregscsu beefed up a bit. It’s called EZBrew 1.95 and its free. Then I store them on google drive for easy access from anywhere. Here they are:

MullerBrau Brewing Recipe Pages

I’ve downloaded the EZBrew spreadsheet but haven’t recorded anything with it yet. It is really thorough and well laid out.
If I’m working from a kit, I take notes on the paper directions that came with it and transfer to Brewtoad. If it’s my own recipe, I create it in Brewtoad and print it out to take notes on during the brew day, then input my notes back in the Brewtoad recipe I created. Brewtoad isn’t the greatest but it’s free and the first online brewing software I used so I just kept using it.

You hear that noise? That’s the hippies gathering outside your house to protest your murder of trees :wink: [/quote]
+1 LMAO but in the gathering…

Mullerbrau’s spreadsheet looks great.

If I hadn’t already invested in BS2 I might go that way. I keep pH readings and details in the notes section of BS2 if there’s no field for them.

Design my recipes on Brewtoad, add water changes from Brunwater, print that all out, and add notes on EVERYTHING that I do on brewday. 3-ring binder. Also have a summary on an excel spreadsheet. Yeah, I’m obsessive…

I have printed out recipe sheets that I make notes on. I used to write out my recipes in a spiral notebook.

I much prefer writing my recipes to using a brewing program.

Then I take pictures of all my stuff to save them, incase something gets spilled on them.

Edit: heres a screenshot, its a work in progress, always tweaking it.

I kept a huge and ever-expanding Word document for about 100 batches. I know I looked at the EZ Brew spreadsheet a few years back, and ended up developing my own, which has served me well. But I like the amount of info on the EZ Brew. Looks good.

Mine focuses more on simplifying water calculations, including things like malt conditioning, grain absorption, boiloff, and batch sparging. My main computer died a couple months ago, and luckily I was able to recover all of the info on the hard drive. So now I’m working on uploading the recipes that are important to me into Google Spreadsheets.

Here’s a link to my spreadsheet template


Thanks for re-linking EZ Brew, Greg. :cheers:

If you want to monkey around with my spreadsheet, open the link and then go “File” → “Make a Copy”. Then you can rename it and it’s stored in your drive, and you can start to play around. The boiloff is set for my 10-gallon Polarware pot, and it’s based on my own data. You may want to tweak that to suit your own setup.

If you enter the grain info, batch size and boil length, the water data starts to calculate. I do water calculations with Bru’n Water and enter those manually.

I really like EZBrew because of all the hop yeast and grain info on the other tabs. It is very informative so you can learn to appreciate what grains to use for a particular purpose (raisin, date, caramel, etc.) as well as hop substitutions etc.

[quote=“simple”]In my head.
Doesn’t always work.[/quote]

Yeah. My head doesn’t always work either. That’s why I use BeerSmith 2.

Excel spreadsheet dating back to 2005. Pretty cool to scroll around and find trends and patterns about myself.

Why every freaking November I’ve brewed a Mild ale??

I’m kind of a Luddite. I’ve kept a series of smallish (8 x 5.5 in) black sketchbooks (journal type) with notes inside for the last 5-6 years. I usually use two pages or so for brewing notes and a page or two for tasting notes. For me, there is something about flipping through the pages of a year of brewing to see what I was doing at different times of the year. I sometimes add tasting notes for commercial representatives (although the journals are chronological so it can be a bit hard to connect).