Author(s): Richard Hood
Dandelion beer. Yep, you read that right and no, it's not some hippy drink brewed by people in kaftans, skipping around fields and waving daisies in the air. This is a man's drink, a tough, no-nonsense, grassroots drink that will lead the home-brewing revolution. Well, one drink may not do all that but Brew it Yourself, a collection of home-grown brewing recipes, is sure to put the fizz back in Britain's fervor for home-brewing. The craft drinks market is undergoing a huge resurgence and authors Richard Hood and Nick Moyle (the Two Thirsty Gardeners) have taken their two great loves - alcohol and gardening - to create a list of more than 75 drinks recipes using ingredients, either bought in their local supermarket or grown in their own backyard. With everything from nettle beer to horseradish vodka, Richard and Nick bring the art of brewing back to earth. Focusing on the ingredients as much as the end results, this book provides inspiration for people to turn a bag of fruit or veg from a supermarket or a pick-your-own farm, a surplus harvest, a weed-infested yard into a successful, and delicious, drink.The book outlines the basic approaches to each drinks-making method and what each ingredient contributes to the recipe.
Brew it Yourself also debunks myths, celebrates experimentation and takes the fear out of the science of fermentation. It proves that creating your own tasty alcoholic drinks doesn't need to be complicated, doesn't need to be costly and definitely doesn't need to be time-consuming.
Nick and Richard started up the Two Thirsty Gardeners website in 2012 and have built up a solid audience through this with 7,726 page impressions from 3,956 visits in the last two months. They have both worked in the magazine publishing industry for 20 years and have a good base of media contacts who will help with publicity. The two men grew up during the UK home brew boom of the 1970s & 80s with parents who regularly made their own drinks from home grown produce. Richard's gran used to force him to stir her elderberry wine while Nick made his own carrot whisky before he was old enough to drink it. Their early forays with beer and wine kits were undeniably crude, but this experimentation fired up a life-long obsession for the art of brewing. In 2008 they built their own cider press and have been producing cider for local pubs, beer festivals and deserving friends ever since. They have both been avid veg growers since they were young, and in 2011 finally acquired an allotment, giving them the space to start growing their own produce on a larger scale, to eat and to turn into alcoholic drinks. The first thing they planted was a cider apple tree.Richard is a freelance graphic designer and Nick runs his own design business.