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The New Complete Joy of Home Brewing

4.26  ·  Rating Details  ·  2,518 Ratings  ·  178 Reviews
Just released 3rd Edition. Fully revised and updated. For the beginner, intermediate and advanced brewer as well as some new recipes. New hops, malt extracts and a better understanding of brewing chemistry. Still the bible of home brewing 399 pgs
Paperback, 398 pages
Published October 1st 1991 by Avon Books (first published 1980)
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(showing 1-30 of 3,000)
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Servius  Heiner
May 12, 2010 Servius Heiner rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
For the record, I am giving this book 4 stars not because the author is a literary genius, but on the technical merits there in... The author is actually really obnoxious. I assume this is because he is drunk.


Again, great information if you can look past the personality of the author.
Tchadensis
Aug 02, 2011 Tchadensis rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Amazing utterly amazing is how I would describe the Charlie Papizan's The Complete Joy of Home Brewing. I have home brewed with a friend and we refer to it as "the bible" as it provides all the information one would need to know in order to start making their own beer at home. The book is structured excellently as it begins with the history of beer (which is quite old) and then transitions to explaining how to home brew and the materials required to home brew. The Joy of Home Brewing also contai ...more
Gary Foss
Oct 07, 2013 Gary Foss rated it really liked it
Shelves: food-and-drink
This is an informative and clear read on the subject. What's more, it's fun. Unlike a few of the other books on the subject that I've laid my hands on, the prose in this book is lively and entertaining... and you know what, given the subject matter, why not? It's about brewing in your home, man, it's not rocket science. It's supposed to be fun. If you're not enjoying it, just go buy something off the shelf (or consider a detox program) because going to the trouble might not be your thing.

The org
...more
Ethan
Dec 26, 2010 Ethan rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: nonfiction
"Relax, don't worry, have a home brew."

If you're interested in learning how to home brew, this book is perfect.

As a newbie homebrewer, I found this book to be enormously helpful. Papazian is laid back, humorous, and incredibly knowledgeable. He stresses that fledgling homebrewers shouldn't worry overmuch about their beer, and offers a ton of great tips and some tasty recipes. Some home brew books tend to be pedantic or overly prescriptive ("you must not let the hot wort sit for more than a few m
...more
J Campbell
Aug 01, 2014 J Campbell rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
If there is a better book on homebrew, I've never heard of it. Papazian's book has something for everyone, from the beginner to the master brewer. The first section gets the newbie off the ground, going through the basics and encouraging people to get a batch going NOW!

The next section, for the intermediate brewer, goes into insane detail about all the ingredients that go into beer, and how they effect the end product.

Papazian's attitude is laid back and encouraging. Because of the vast possibil
...more
Sara
Apr 30, 2011 Sara rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
This, on the other hand, is an example of great nonfiction. It wasn't even telling a story, just teaching you things, but it was really really interesting. The tone is great, and the way Papazian presents information makes it easily understandable even when he's presenting math- and chemistry-related concepts. (And we all know those are my least-strong suits.) It's a great book because it covers pretty much everything you'd ever need to know to brew your own beer, but it'd even be a good book fo ...more
Davy
Jan 26, 2014 Davy rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Compared to How to Brew, this was less dry and made brewing beer sound even MORE fun. Looking forward to reading the Homebrewer's Companion to try to learn little tidbits.
Joshua Michail
Feb 03, 2016 Joshua Michail rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Shelves:
First, this is not literature. However, for those who want to brew their own beer this book is an indispensable reference. Mr. Papazian takes the reader from the beginning, assuming one is just now considering the idea of homebrewing, all the way through mastery of the craft. He explains in just the right amount of detail all the things that inevitably cause questions. As an extremely experienced brew master he relies on his own experience, research and talent to anticipate precisely every quest ...more
Sirius Scientist
My husband is an obsessed avid homebrewer, as are many of our friends. Because of this, I am subjected to all things beer on a regular basis. I have a strong biochemistry/metabolism background and THAT part of beer making does intrigue me. I'm not going to blame the book for my knowledge base, and I think it does a good job simplifying the process so anyone, regardless of background, can understand what is going on. The introduction to basic equations and theory is also pretty good.

The main pro
...more
Chris J Mears
Mar 03, 2013 Chris J Mears rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: beer-brewing
Awesome beginner to intermediate guide on the art of home brewing beer. Though I haven't used any of the recipes (you can find better ones online or at your local beer supply store), it will help you understand the process and the method behind the madness.
Cat
Feb 28, 2015 Cat rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: cookbooks, food
So...this guy really knows his stuff. The Complete Joy of Home Brewing is bursting with helpful information. As a beginner-beginner, I really appreciate the level of detail, not just in the “Especially for the Beginner” section, but throughout the whole book. From history, to measurement and temperature charts, to the equipment needed, to breaking down each ingredient, to the variations on each type of beer. The only thing I didn’t like about this book is that I think it could be illustrated a b ...more
Gregg
Oct 29, 2012 Gregg rated it did not like it  ·  review of another edition
This book is somewhat dated and really does not offer a very good introduction to homebrewing for the novice. John Palmer's "How To Brew" is a far better book.
Emily
Mar 11, 2008 Emily rated it it was ok  ·  review of another edition
This was helpful. However: the pictures and the constant reminders from the author to "Have fun!" were a bit much.
Andrea
Jul 20, 2016 Andrea rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
It was a little disorganized, but got the point across. I liked that it had a dumbed-down "first brew" section for newbies. The second section got into more complicated types of beers, mainly focusing on the foundations of each beer type so you can develop your own, with a few recipes at the end. The final section was an advanced look at the chemistry behind the brewing process, as well as even more complex techniques.

The tone of the book was friendly and conversational, and while I found the in
...more
Rob
Sep 14, 2015 Rob rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Recommended to Rob by: Eric
Shelves: own, 2014, homebrewing, 2015
--- Second time around: ---

If I had to pick one, I'd pick Palmer. But I'm not forced to make that choice, so I'm glad I have both. My first read was focused on the basics; second time was focused on yeast and getting oriented to all-grain brewing. As I've mentioned before, it's clear why this is one of the canonical homebrew texts.

--- First time around: ---

A couple of short notes here:

• "Relax. Don't worry. Have a homebrew." Therein creating a paradox, as I have no homebrew to have while brewing
...more
Michael Lawrence
Aug 28, 2008 Michael Lawrence rated it it was amazing
Recommends it for: Beer Lovers
Recommended to Michael by: I found it myself
Shelves: health
This is one of my favorite books of all time. I have read it before and just recently pulled it off my book shelf for round two. The summer sunshine has put me back into beer brewing mode and this is the BIBLE of home brewing.

I started as any other home brewer with a kit and ended up with shitty beer. That is NOT ACCEPTABLE.. not to a beer lover like myself. So I bought this book and after reading it I literally transformed from novice home brewer to expert.

Many home brews later I now have the
...more
Jeff Zapotoczny
This book is informative, maybe even invaluable in parts as a guide to home brewing. Since much of the info presented was essentially a review for me (I've been brewing for nearly a year), I found myself dwelling on the tone and the presentation more than the content at times. And it was annoying! The phrase "Relax, don't worry, have a homebrew" is repeated WAY too often. Also, this may be limited to the Kindle edition of the book, but the presentation of lists of statistics about various kinds ...more
Steve
Feb 10, 2011 Steve rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: own-print
I haven't actually read this book cover to cover, but I've read enough of it to get started in homebrewing. So far I've made three 5-gallon batches. This book is really a great resource for homebrewers and often considered the favorite and first choice for beginners. I've read this along with the online version of How to Brew by John Palmer. Also important for helping me get started was the Basic Brewing DVD by James Spencer and Steve Wilkes that gives a simple overview of the process of extract ...more
Ashley
Nov 01, 2009 Ashley rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Recommends it for: new homebrewers
Recommended to Ashley by: Eben Lindsey
Shelves: diy-and-green
I suppose it isn't fair to review this book before I actually go through my first homebrew experience. The book came very highly recommended to me by many dear friends who brew. And I can see why the book is appealing; it is full of clear recipes, has helpful instructions, quick overviews of different beer styles, and goes over a lot of terminology (and it includes a glossary in the back).

I liked that Papazian reminds you over and over again that this is supposed to be fun and not to stress out
...more
Sagely
Nov 11, 2015 Sagely rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Charlie Papazian's Complete Joy of Homebrewing is the happiest, friendliest homebrew book I've read.

CJH offers some really useful guidance in homebrewing. The first chapter or so may trick into thinking this is a book just for beginners, sprinkling some yeast into prepackaged wort. But read on! Further chs dive into the details of all grain and more--but never lose the great sense of humor.

There are some great recipes here. A great book for the brew shelf.
Tabitha
Jan 18, 2011 Tabitha rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
This is (so far) my favorite homebrew book. Papazian's got such an upbeat, relaxed approach to the whole thing. He takes a new hobby that could be very daunting and shows you how it really doesn't have to be that bad.
The first portion of the book explains all the basics of procedure, gives a nice list of equipment to collect, and gives some suggestions about how to set up your homebrew station in your kitchen. It's like having your big brother help you get started on a project. There are clear d
...more
Michael Clark
Nov 07, 2013 Michael Clark rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: library, buy
Relax. Don't worry. Have a homebrew!
WORRYING MAKES BAD BEER. RELAX!

A practical guide for all skill level home brewers. The total novice can begin after reading only 42 heavily illustrated, easy to read pages, and have beer ready to enjoy in three weeks! The rest of the book is dedicated to the intermediate and advance home brewers, and the science and technicality increase accordingly.
-

“When you make homebrew, you are dealing with a living organism. It is alive – and because it is alive it feels
...more
James
May 31, 2016 James rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
An excellent introduction book for anyone looking to get into homebrewing. It's the first book I read, and some of the recopies I use today are derived from ones in this book. As a technical reference it's not as strong as others that are out there, but the basics and feel of homebrewing are expounded simply and thoroughly
Braden
Jan 29, 2010 Braden rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
The book itself can be viewed several different ways. If you are just starting out homebrewing, my advice is to just read the first chapter or so where he describes the process of making very basic beer and gives you a very stripped down recipe/explanation of what is going on. Once you have brewed that first batch, the chapters that follow after make much more sense as you have a basic idea of how the process goes.

As someone said earlier, you can find most of this online, but when it's coming f
...more
John N
Aug 05, 2015 John N rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
This is a great book to introduce beer brewing. For my style of learning I did not particularly enjoy how the author broke divided the sections into beginner, intermediate, and advance brewing, but I understand why they did so. It is a great starter book and has me seeking more information.
Tom Ranken
Feb 20, 2015 Tom Ranken rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Not really a 'read;' it is more of a how-to book. But what a terrific one for those interested in brewing beer at home. He covers a vast array of issues that should be of interest to both the beginner and more advanced homebrewer. It really is a homebrew 'Bible.'
Todd
Oct 09, 2014 Todd rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
I have always wanted to brew my own beer but was always intimated. This book broke it down and turned something that seemed like alchemy into something that I could do. After reading this, I wanted to run to the beer store, get some supplies and start brewing.
Gregory
Although I credit this book with getting me into brewing, it is a bit loose with some important details about brewing. It also contains some fairly outdated procedures and many of the recipes are less than true to style.

All that said - this is a very comforting book to help the first time brewer. It does make the brewing process easy and lays a very good foundation for the beginner brewer. I still hand my copy to first time brewers and tell them to read through it - though if they get hooked I q
...more
Jason Wardell
Again, cheating a little. I have referenced this book more in the past year than any other books I own, and I probably won't stop. This thing is indispensable, but when you have SO MUCH information, the book itself can turn into a slog or a treasure hunt. I have something highlighted on nearly every page, and the index tends to point to three or four different spots for each topic, some of which are just an off-hand mention. This book could use better organization, more help with all-grain brewi ...more
Michael Travis
Jun 06, 2016 Michael Travis rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
"Buy a man a beer, and he wastes an hour. Teach a man to brew, and he wastes a lifetime."
This is the book that created the homebrew/craftbeer revolution! The easy reading descriptions of Charlie soak right in! "Relax, don't worry, have a homebrew"

A must read for anyone even remotely thinking about brewing or a slight interest in beer at all.
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