When you start getting into beer, you also start to hear whispers of the world of homebrew. I’ve had some really good homebrews from folks that have gotten some rather impressive setups. When you see those, it can seem really daunting to get into. I mean, I can get around a kitchen just fine, but there’s a lot of stainless to go with the science. And yeah, you could get one of those plastic brew kits, but at that point, why bother? Or, you could embrace your inner tech geek (I mean, you’re reading this site) and go for the all-in-one BEERMKR.
I first ran across BEERMKR with a post from Colvinology on Instagram (and if you like beer or Gundam, you ought to be following him), and was intrigued. This is very literally an appliance that will brew the beer for you. Sure, that takes some of the “fun” out of it, but it also takes the guesswork out. It maintains the temperature, moves things through the phases, and keeps things sealed up so you’re not risking contaminating or otherwise “skunking” your beer.
Unlike those plasticky at-home beer kits, the BEERMKR does give you a choice in what you’re brewing. Stout, IPA, Ale, Kolsh, and so on – they’ve got kits that can help you make it. And if you want to doctor up one of those kits, or even branch out? Well, you can add your own ingredients. And I have to say, you are still involved in the process (from what I’ve read up on) – it’s not just a push button thing. You are getting your grains in there, you’re adding in the hops, so you are a part of the process. (For more on the “how”, check the video above, or go to this page).
As things are perking along in the BEERMKR, you can also keep a tab on things via an associated app on your phone (what doesn’t have an app these days?), and once you’re told it’s ready (aka, the brewing and the fermentation is all done), then it’s time to move it over to the tap system they have, and enjoy!
As with all things that bring convenience to your life, there is a tradeoff. It’s not in the ingredients, as you can adjust those as you want to (I’m guessing that comes more into play as you make more brews in the system). Here, it’s the pricing. To get into the basic BEERMKR kit, which gets you a BEERMKR, tap, and one mix kit (of your choice), you’re talking $579. So, no, it’s not inexpensive, but it’s drastically more affordable than piecing together your own at-home kit (and, pro-tip, looks to make sanitation a cinch, which is key for homebrew).
Once you get going, you can get additional kits to brew up more flavors for $59 for a 4-pack or $89 for a 6-pack. After that initial device setup, you’re getting about 150oz per brew, so pricing is well within the realm of good craft brew – and it’s your own style. You’re also going to want to make sure that you’ve got enough space for this appliance to get this setup (I’m thinking my basement workbench would be an ideal space for it) that’s near electric (to plug it in) and clean water (for the brew process, and to clean it out). Just note the dimensions down below, and see where it fits in your world.
We’ve not tried out the BEERMKR ourselves, but it looks to be a turnkey way to dive into the world of brewing your own craft beer. And they way it manages to blend our fascination with gadgets into some tasty brewpops? Well, that’s just foam on the glass. You can check out all the details, and even order your own, over at beermkr.com
Tech Specs from BEERMKR
|BEERMKR Dimensions||17″ x 18″ x 16.5″, 12lbs|
|BEERTAP Dimensions||7.8″ x 12″ x 18″, 4lbs|
|YIELD||150oz Finished Beer|
|ABV% Maximum||9% all-grain, higher with added sugar|
|Bittering hops||Steam Hops (100% utilization), pelletized hops (8% utilization)|
|Heaters||4 including TEC, 150w|
|Cooling||1 TEC, 90w|
|Max Temp||170º F|
|Cooling Max||45º below ambient|
|Fermentation Temperature Accuracy||+/- 0.5º F|
|Yeast Styles / Fermentation Range||All – fermentation range from 45º – 100º|
|Kettle Sour||Yes as an option during the brewing phase|
|Fermentation Management||CO2 monitoring system adjusts fermentation temperatures based on stage of fermentation and yeast strain|
|Ingredients||MKR KITs and DIY|
|DIY Mode||Temperature and time variable editing as well as auto mode|
|Beer Completion Time||7 days (4% ABV) to 14 days (9%+ ABV)|
|Wifi Connection||2.4ghz a/b/g/n|
|Smartphone/Tablet Required||Yes (iOS or Android)|
|Power Input||100v-240v 50/60hz|