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An Analysis of Brewing Techniques [Paperback]

George Fix
3.0 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (3 customer reviews)

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Book Description

Jan. 26 1998
By furnishing brewers with research and data on the ancient art and science of brewing, the authors help increase their chances of attaining desired flavors in every batch of beer brewed. Illustrations and photos throughout.

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Customer Reviews

3.0 out of 5 stars
3.0 out of 5 stars
Most helpful customer reviews
2.0 out of 5 stars For Micro- and Advanced Homebrewers April 30 1999
By A Customer
Format:Paperback
I disliked this book because it contained several errors and misquotes, and seemed to be an advertisement for Zahm and Nagle (though I doubt the authors have any afilliation).
Fix and Fix attribute several statements which I found surprising to author and Master Brewer Eric Warner in his excellent book, German Wheat Beers. I read Warner's book before this one, was surprised, went back to Warner, and could not locate, after several re-readings, the statements which Fix and Fix had attributed to him in that book.
There are numerous references, however, to the companion volume, also by George Fix. Unfortunately, this is overdone, and appears quite condescending. As an example, Fix's own Principles of Brewing Science is cited as the authority that esters are compounds which may be formed from an alcohol molecule and a molecule of a carboxylic acid by dehydration synthesis. Inasmuch as this is covered in virtually every book on elementary Organic Chemistry, it is questionable whether it needs citation or not. In any case, it appears that Fix himself is claiming this as his own discovery.
The illustrations, which are usually quite nicely prepared, are often on a different page from the accompaning text. While this is at times unavoidable, it was the rule rather than the exception, and usually occured for no apparent reason. The same observation applies to numerous tables.
One feature of the book which I found inspiring appeared in several of the photographs: many ribbons, trophies, etc., are visible, which the authors presumably won in Homebrew competitions.
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3.0 out of 5 stars Interesting, but not very useful June 7 2000
By A Customer
Format:Paperback
This is an interesting book, filled with lots of experimental data. I was expecting a comparative analysis of various brewing techniques used in industry. Unfortunately, this book seemed to be more of a comparative analysis of the Fix's various home brewing techniques, most of which only translate loosly into professional brewing techniques or even practical home brewing techniques.
There are some good insights and information in this book and these save the book from being completely useless.
Was this review helpful to you?
4.0 out of 5 stars Agree to Disagree with previous reviewers March 4 2007
Format:Paperback
I liked this book. The chemistry and physical reactions involved in all aspects of brewing are daunting to someone who hasn't had coursework in organic chemistry. I learned a lot from this book and from the other Fix books.

I can forgive the arrogance of an author ... everyone wants to appear the expert! It's just marketing, but trying to tear an author down to make one's self look smarter - I have trouble with.

This book, along with the other Fix books have significant merit to both serious beginners to advanced brewers. We're all trying to improve our craft - this material can go far in helping you do that.
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Most Helpful Customer Reviews on Amazon.com (beta)
Amazon.com: 3.3 out of 5 stars  3 reviews
13 of 14 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Definitive Source of Advanced Brewing Information May 12 2010
By David Louw - Published on Amazon.com
Format:Paperback|Verified Purchase
So after reading the other two reviews I have to speak up with a differing opinion. I have a shelf full of brewing texts including books from Noonan, Daniels, Lewis, Korzonas, Miller, Hieronymus, and many more. Looking at it now I count 33 different titles about brewing techniques, recipes, and styles. When it comes to finding a clear and practical answer to a deep technical question, though, An Analysis of Brewing Techniques is almost always where I end up. In a fairly slim text he manages to cover a wide range of topics that others merely skim.

For example, today I had a question about when to use various fining agents on my beer. In eight pages he explains what causes beer clarity problems, the theory behind the techniques for clearing beer, various specific fining agents, tables showing experimental results at different dosing rates, downsides of the various methods, and references to more deep technical papers if I want to follow up. Immediately following that he goes into detail on how to filter beer. That's indispensable for a brewer that's graduated beyond the basics but doesn't have the time to get an education at UC Davis or Weihenstephan.

This is a fairly difficult book to track down at a reasonable price. If you do find it and you already have the basics well in hand then you won't be disappointed. I know I guard mine closely. If I were forced to pair my collection down to just three books they would be How to Brew by Palmer, Brewing Classic Styles by Zainasheff, and An Analysis of Brewing Techniques by Fix.
28 of 38 people found the following review helpful
2.0 out of 5 stars For Micro- and Advanced Homebrewers April 30 1999
By A Customer - Published on Amazon.com
Format:Paperback
I disliked this book because it contained several errors and misquotes, and seemed to be an advertisement for Zahm and Nagle (though I doubt the authors have any afilliation).
Fix and Fix attribute several statements which I found surprising to author and Master Brewer Eric Warner in his excellent book, German Wheat Beers. I read Warner's book before this one, was surprised, went back to Warner, and could not locate, after several re-readings, the statements which Fix and Fix had attributed to him in that book.
There are numerous references, however, to the companion volume, also by George Fix. Unfortunately, this is overdone, and appears quite condescending. As an example, Fix's own Principles of Brewing Science is cited as the authority that esters are compounds which may be formed from an alcohol molecule and a molecule of a carboxylic acid by dehydration synthesis. Inasmuch as this is covered in virtually every book on elementary Organic Chemistry, it is questionable whether it needs citation or not. In any case, it appears that Fix himself is claiming this as his own discovery.
The illustrations, which are usually quite nicely prepared, are often on a different page from the accompaning text. While this is at times unavoidable, it was the rule rather than the exception, and usually occured for no apparent reason. The same observation applies to numerous tables.
One feature of the book which I found inspiring appeared in several of the photographs: many ribbons, trophies, etc., are visible, which the authors presumably won in Homebrew competitions.
9 of 14 people found the following review helpful
3.0 out of 5 stars Interesting, but not very useful June 7 2000
By A Customer - Published on Amazon.com
Format:Paperback
This is an interesting book, filled with lots of experimental data. I was expecting a comparative analysis of various brewing techniques used in industry. Unfortunately, this book seemed to be more of a comparative analysis of the Fix's various home brewing techniques, most of which only translate loosly into professional brewing techniques or even practical home brewing techniques.
There are some good insights and information in this book and these save the book from being completely useless.
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