Book review: The Craft of Stone Brewing

For some, arrogance is a sin. For Stone Brewing Company, it's a badge of honour and a business plan.

In 'The Craft Of Stone Brewing', Greg Koch and Steve Wagner serve up a book of three and a half halves. The ever-obligatory "what is beer" section is handled with typical Stone panache and offers some genuinely useful info on differing malts, hops and water salts. A potted history of how the brewery came to be is genuinely interesting, with the lowdown on the trials and tribulations of Arrogant Bastard's difficult birth and how their passion for 'signature' beers led them to similar heights at their World Bistro.

There's a rundown of Stone's regular, special and collaboration beers although it doesn't approach the detail given on their excellent website. And for the DIY enthusiasts, there are recipes for both homebrew versions for a range of Stone beers alongside some of the popular Bistro dishes, paired with and cooked with the beers themselves.

It has that indelible Greg Koch footprint all over it - arrogance and passion - yet allows a step back for others to fill in the shadows or offer a differing viewpoint. As a primer on all that is Stone Brewing, the book is educational. As an illustration of how forward-thinking the brewery is - particularly in comparison to the pale imitators we've seen mouthing off in the UK - it's invaluable.

The Craft Of Stone Brewing is published by Ten Speed Press. Many thanks to them for the review copy.


  1. I have not been drawn to the book. I like the beer a lot, US national craft at a very decent price within the limited range they are comfortable brewing. But I chuck all that boring Greg Koch crap on the pretty painted labels in the bin after I pour. If they didn't waste all that money on the painted bottles, the beer would be cheaper.

  2. Simon - Thanks for the great review. Glad you enjoyed!

    Alan - I hope you meant "recycling bin," in which case...great! That's what I do too (save for squirreling a few away for posterity...and for the ones I use to line my bedroom walls...oh, and in the shower too (but never mind about that)). At any rate, changing to a paper label wouldn't save any money I'm afraid, but the bright side of that is that you'll be able to continue posting comments of our 'painted' bottles in the comments section of reviews on our book (which would have been cheaper if we hadn't insisted the publisher choose the greener printing options...true story).