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I would like to know, in your opinion, what is harder to produce: wine or beer. I mean, including all the steps: planting grapes or barley, taking care of them, collecting, making, etc... the whole process :)

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closed as not a real question by hobodave Oct 18 '11 at 17:56

It's difficult to tell what is being asked here. This question is ambiguous, vague, incomplete, overly broad, or rhetorical and cannot be reasonably answered in its current form. For help clarifying this question so that it can be reopened, visit the help center.If this question can be reworded to fit the rules in the help center, please edit the question.

    
How are you quantifying "difficulty"? –  baka Oct 18 '11 at 17:08
    
This is a place for food and cooking questions, not gardening. And as baka hinted, I'm not sure how you want to compare the difficulty of maintaining a crop for six months to the difficulty of prep or the difficulty of waiting for fermentation. –  Jefromi Oct 18 '11 at 17:32
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homebrewers generally don't grow their own crops, I think even most major breweries just buy from suppliers. In terms of the actual brewing process, its not so difficult for beer so long as you keep everything well sanitized and can follow the recipe. –  riotburn Oct 18 '11 at 17:34
    
Please take some time to familiarize yourself with our faq. In addition to not being topical to our site, this question is overly broad and unanswerable, as well as largely subjective. –  hobodave Oct 18 '11 at 17:58
    
@hobodave, just when I gave a real answer... –  BaffledCook Oct 18 '11 at 18:34

1 Answer 1

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I haven't done it myself, but I guess making beer is more difficult for one good reason: safety!

Grapes will ferment by themselves and will produce either wine or vinegar. The fermentation process is violent, so there's no risk. Added meat will be fermented as well!

Beer needs to be sterilized before a yeast is added and there's a risk for butulism.

Now, making a good wine is something else. I guess that making a good wine is far more complicated then making a decent beer, once you overcome the safety issues, as there are a great number of steps involved in making good wine. For instance: aging in oak.

Commercial wines start by sterilizing the grapes and afterwards adding a certain yeast strain, but hey...

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For beer, boiling the wort is not required for safety (but it is if you want decent beer). No known human pathogens (from what I've heard online) can survive the fermentation process combined with the preservative effects of hops (including botulism - beer is too acidic for it to survive). There are some organisms like wild yeasts and Lactobacillus that can live in beer, but they're not dangerous, they just make the beer taste bad (usually sour - lambics deliberately use wild yeasts). I have not tried it, but it seems like wine would be harder to make (takes much more time at the very least). –  user5561 Dec 16 '11 at 20:46
    
@user5561, thanks for pointing that out. Didn't know it. –  BaffledCook Dec 16 '11 at 23:46
    
I would say it depends on if you like the effort up front (then beer is easier, lots of up front work) or a lot of waiting (then wine is easier, less work up front, lots of waiting and intermediate steps before bottling). Same amount of sanitation in both cases, bottling can be more annoying with beer. I've brewed both wine and beer for several years. –  lemontwist Jan 8 '13 at 11:59

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