Last year at CES 2016 I was blown away to see a home electronics device designed for one reason: To make beer. PicoBrew is a home brewing unit with which one can mix, brew, and ferment US and international craft beer. Last year we were never able to get an interview with the company. This year, at CES 2017 we were finally able to speak with the developers at PicoBrew about their product line, and exactly how one uses the device to make excellent, tasty beers at home, in 7-10 days from brewing to a beer in your hand. You can watch our interview right here:
Because I so enjoyed the great craft beers I was tasting at the Pico display at CES in Las Vegas the last two years, I had to find out just how easy it is to make home brews with the PicoBrew system. Pico Brew is sold at Amazon, and other fine retailers. Here is the process in a nutshell: Using the pre packaged recipe for your favorite Craft beers in a PicoPak, you brew 5 liters of beer in about 2-3 hours. The brew is then fermented in a Keg, usually for 7-10 days, then you add carbonation, and enjoy!. Seems simple right? Let’s talk a bit more in detail about each step of the process.
What is a Picobrew? For the craft beer aficionado, making one’s own brewskis can easily move from dream to reality. The Picobrew is a complete system for $799 USD. The package includes the Pico Brewing Machine, a user manual, one sample PicoPak, one Brewing Keg, one Dispensing Keg, the Brewing keg seal, stopper, keg lid and the dispensing keg plug. It also contains the Fast Fermentation Adapter to decrease fermentation time, a dip tube brush, 2 keg wands, and cleaning tablets for deep cleaning of the Pico. Other items in the box: Racking tube, Co2 regulator and dispensing adapter, and the Sous Vide Adapter for cooking. Yes, cooking and beer. I know this list might be intimidating, but I promise this is a simple system.
The beer process begins with the PicoPak. This is the complete recipe for one batch of beer, and you can order them from Amazon, or one of the other retailers of the Pico. There are many choices of style of beer, and many more choices of Craft brewer. From Lagers to Pils, from Ales to Porters, every style imaginable to the craft beer enthusiast is available for your Pico. There are too many brewers to list in this short article, but there are Brewer after brewer from coast to coast partnered with Pico. The PicoPak can also help you brew great craft beers from around the world from countries like Canada, Brazil, or Australia. This year Pico has brought out the FreeStyle PicoPak online service, where the home brewer can tweak his favorite recipes for a personal touch. Most PicoPaks cost around $25 USD, for one brew cycle, and 5 liters of top quality, fresh brewed, beer.
The PicoPak is mixed with water and then brewed in the Picobrew for around 2 hours, depending upon the recipe. Once the brewing is done, you will use the Pico to transfer the brew to the brewing tank. When the brewing is done, you can transfer the brew to the serving keg using the RACK BEER selection on the Utility screen. That takes about ten minutes and should be monitored closely. Once you have your fresh beer in the serving keg, you can choose to force carbonation using the small included cartridge and letting the beer sit in the refrigerator for 36 hours. Another way to carbonate the beer is to add the provided sugar packet into the Serving Keg before racking beer; then you let the Keg sit for 7 days or until completely carbonated, and then refrigerate.
PicoBrew also allows the gourmet chef the ability to cook using the Sous Vide attachment. This allows moisture to be retained in the food with uniform heating, and very delicious results. When the beer brewing is done, the Filet Mignon goes in! Cheers!!
In a nutshell
The PicoBrew home brewing solution provides the craft beer enthusiast with a simple, and modern way to make tasty home brews, as well as cooking gourmet dinners. The ability to tweak known recipes allows one to change a hoppy brew into something a bit less flavorful and strong and experiment as they learn the craft of homebrewing. At $799 USD for the system, and between $20-30 USD for the PicoPak, this seems a great way way for the craft beer consumer to increase his enjoyment of his hobby, with no real worry about making mistakes or terrible beer. 7 days to 5 liters of fine home brewed Craft beer from some of the best brewers in the Nation, and the world. I’ve tasted the beer, I’ve met the folks at Picobrew. Now it’s time to get my hands on one of these machines.
Are you a manufacturer or distributor that would like us to test something out for review? Contact us and we can let you know where to send the product and we will try it out.