America has become a nation of beer intellectuals. Here, the things they love, from exotic new brews and a tasting-notes diary to DIY kits.

By Megan Krigbaum
Updated March 31, 2015
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Credit: Photo © Brooklyn Brew Shop

Courtesy of Brooklyn Brew Shop

New Web Source For Home-Brewing Basics

After Stephen Valand and Erica Shea found an old fermenter in her parents' basement, they taught themselves how to brew beer. Now the DIY evangelists own the Brooklyn Brew Shop, a terrific online source for small-batch home-brewing kits that include all the necessary equipment, yeast, malts and hops. Their most popular kit: a Belgian-style ale called A Well Made Tripel. $40 for a one-gallon kit; brooklynbrewshop.com.

Credit: Photo © Theo Morrison

Photo © Theo Morrison

Beer Journal

Dave Selden, a Portland, Oregon, craft-beer geek, needed a place to jot down tasting notes, so he created these smart, pocket-size journals. Beer fanatics can record everything from flavor notes to ABVs (alcohol by volume). $10 for 3 books; 33beers.com.

Photo © Theo Morrison

Sausage-Perfect

Mustard Abita lager flavors this spicy mustard from New Orleans's porky Cochon restaurant. $5 for 6 oz; cochonrestaurant.com.

Copyright 2009 Derek Hatfield Photography, Inc.

Malty, Salty Candy

Truffle Truffle makes its malty Beer and Pretzel Brittle with Rogue chocolate stout. $12 for 1/4 lb; truffletruffle.com.

Photo © Theo Morrison

Bivalve Brews

Traditional British oyster stout is, in fact, brewed with fresh oysters, but the beer is minerally, not fishy. Try the limited-edition stout from Boston's Harpoon, or the newly imported Porterhouse from Ireland.

New Beer Pros

The latest craft brewers: chefs. In Philadelphia, Fork's Terence Feury will pour his English-style ale for Philly Beer Week (June 4–13). phillybeerweek.org.

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Credit: TINA RUPP