Homebrewer's Companion Paperback – Aug 1 1994
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About the Author
Charlie Papazian is president of the Association of Brewers, an organization which he founded. He is the author of The New Complete Joy of Home Brewing and The Home Brewer's Companion. He lives in Boulder, Colorado.
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Much of the book is designed on the premise of expanding to intermediate and advanced brewing, with great DIY instructions for building mash tuns, etc. However when you get to the recipes, they do not fit the book's scope because many require malt extracts. (I'm not suggesting that extract indicates beginner, but rather that by calling for 'branded' extracts... cans of Coopers, etc. the recipes lose a lot of their value. It would have been far better to list pure all grain recipes, then provide supplementary tips for converting those recipes to generic extract + steeping grains).
Worth having, but a better "companion" is "Learn To Brew" by John Palmer, and the best-written recipes can be found in "Brewing Classic Styles"by by Jamil Zainasheff and John Palmer.
When formulating a recipe, I refer back and forth to both books. Each has a variety of recipes in myriad styles that provide a good jumping-off point. For customizing the recipes, I refer to the table in _Companion_ that summarizes the various malts and their contribution to specific gravity, then I go to the table in _Joy_ that catalogs the different varieties of hops and their contribution to bitterness and flavor.
Part of the reason Papazian's first book was so much fun was due to its writing style and humor. This, the follow- up, is more technical in nature and not quite as entertaining to read. It sticks mostly to the facts and leaves out much of the fun, making it a little more likely to induce sleep than inspiration. Nevertheless, this book is still useful as a reference tool and it does have some good beer recipes. Cheers!