Mr. Beer Results

Continuing the discussion from Mr Beer as Christmas present:

A while back we finally “brewed” the Mr Beer kit the kids gave us for Christmas.

Recipe: Classic American Light
OG: It’s Mr. Beer. Who gives a f$&+
FG: Didn’t bother.

Process: we basically followed the kit instructions. One Big caveat, we did put the Mr Beer in our temperature controlled fermentation freezer.

Results: carbonation is a bit inconsistent, which is what I expected with the carb drops that came with the kit; as I was putting them in the bottles, I could even feel there were size differences.

Flavor-wise, I can’t believe I’m saying this but, I’m impressed. OK, I’m not a fan of American light beers, so not the best judge. I’d generally prefer to stay sober over drinking a Bud, but as beer-flavored seltzer goes, this totally hits the mark. The beer is also one of the clearest we’ve made. I had a lot of anti-Mr. Beer bias going into this, and have read tons of horrible results from first-timers brewing Mr. Beer kits. This beer turned out well within spec, and a good example of a difficult to brew style.

Conclusion: Our results, coupled with the internet trash-talk force me to conclude that my results prove definitively that controlling fermentation temperature is absolutely necessary for getting the best results possible.


I’m glad you did it with an open mind. Many first time brews come out bad no matter what technique

I agree with @brew_cat. It doesn’t matter what system you use if your technique is poor. I’m not saying anything bad about Mr. Beer but I’m sure you having sound procedure and technique substantially helped that beer kit.

The pre-hopped extract makes the process dead simple; we kept re-reading the instructions thinking, “No, they can’t mean there is no boiling…”

Basically, it’s more like making a mead. You heat just enough water to dissolve/thin the LME. Then add that to cold water in the barrel. (So near boiling LME doesn’t melt the barrel.) top off with more cold water, and pitch yeast.

Another area where experience came in, was understanding the concept of pitching temperature. Mr Beer’s instructions are slightly superior to our host’s in this regard, but I’ve never seen it done well. Neither has pitching temperature as a topic specifically, NB kits just say “under 78F” Mr. Beer says the top off water should be 40-50F which would probably result in a better temp. We monitored the temp as we topped off, and ended up using ice from the freezer to get us in the mid 60’s.

At some point I’ll use their barrel to ferment a mead batch.

I have to say my start with brewing was Mr. Beer and it was a great way to start. It got me interested in doing more. While it does make good beer, you find that after a while all the beers tend to taste similar. But hey it’s still fun and requires a lot less work!

Congrats to making some beer!