All Hopped Up

Copper Kettle Brewing Co. wants to make you a master brewer in a matter of minutes.

Photo by John Altdorfer

Copper Kettle Brewing Co. is Pittsburgh’s first brew-on-premises shop. It offers the supplies — in addition to loads of fun facts — and guests make their own beer. A chalkboard near the glass storefront lists 50 cleverly named ales in 12 categories. A Copper Kettle employee talks the budding brewers through the process of measuring and grinding specialty grains. Next come bowls of hop pellets, as well as the caramel ooze of liquid malt extract.

"We take the brewing process and make it fun,” says co-owner Greg Hough, a Pittsburgh-area native. After steeping, dumping and stirring ingredients into one of six stainless-steel kettles, customers are encouraged to order beer and grub from the adjacent Hough’s Bar and Restaurant as a way to pass the stretch of boiling time before hops are added.

All told, it’s a two-hour learning adventure. Fermentation takes more time (two to three weeks); guests then return to bottle ($10 per case — but the bottles can be reused) and label (pre-designed labels are free; custom designs are $5 per case) the finished product. Then they can finally crack open a bottle of the homemade creation! Reservations are required; for full details, visit

Categories: Eat + Drink Features