Jason Harris brews classic American pale ales right alongside his own patented version of watermelon beer, illustrating his passion for both traditional techniques and forward-thinking beer recipes. The company he started in 1992, Keystone Homebrew Supply, now employs a staff of similarly dedicated crafters who are wise in the ways and means of making your own beer, wine, cheese, mead, honey, and flavored play-doh. In addition to stocking all the required equipment and ingredients, Keystone's 23,000-square-foot location in Montgomeryville also hosts classes that inspire amateurs to cook up their own tipples and cheeses.
The Fordham & Old Dominion story started in 1989 when Jerry Bailey followed his passion for experimental brews by opening Old Dominion, which quickly gathered a loyal local following. In 1995, Bill Muehlhauser opened Fordham, and the two breweries joined forces 12 years later. Today, the company—led by Muehlhauser—remains dedicated to artfully crafted ales, lagers, and sodas with unique flavor profiles. These brews include the Double D IPA with guava and mango aromas as well as the Baltic porter, which combines the flavors of licorice and toffee with a touch of rye.
Since locally crafted microbrews with delicate, complex flavors take years to perfect, and because you're not likely to possess the license required to run a brewery, it's more economical and rewarding to let someone else do it for you. With today's Groupon, $10 gets you $25 worth of locally brewed beers and tasty eats at Triumph Brewing Company. Taste the ethereal spectrum of hoppy goodness with friends, and put gourmet fuel in your tank for all-night conversation and heated surgery competitions. If she says yes, she is into you. Also, you are at a Star Wars convention, not a bar, and you probably shouldn’t be drinking.
Armed with 20 years of experience, the brewmasters at Mr. Steve's Homebrew and Wine Supplies help amateur boozesmiths notch the proper equipment and wisdom to craft homemade beer and wine. Bring beer dreams to foamy fruition with the Brewer Best kit (a $75 value), which includes the containers, tubes, and other necessary gewgaws, but excludes bottles and patience. A variety of ingredient kits (a $40 value) can facilitate the production of about 50 bottles of beer in a wide range of flavors and species, including standbys such as irish stout and brown ale or seasonals such as Summer Delight. Alternately, find a way to fill up empty water balloons with a winemaking equipment kit (a $115 value) and ingredient kit (a $100 value). The kit enables budding vintners to produce about 30 bottles of riesling, pinot grigio, cabernet sauvignon, or myriad other varieties.