I tried an American Pale kit and it was drinkable. Nothing to really brag about though. I'd really like to clone Sierra Nevadas' IPA. I love that beer. I don't force carbonate, I've just used priming sugar. Also I've only used liquid malt extract. I would like to learn to malt my own grain. I've heard it makes a better beer. What's your thought on this? Thanks for the heads up on the dry mead.
You can make better beer with all grain but I buy it already malted. Malting is not that hard but I leave that job for the malters. I buy grain in 50 pound bags.
Extract makes really good beer as long as it's not old. Dry malt extract has a longer shelf life. Down load Beer Smith. It has a free trial. Then it's about 25.00 for life. It's a great brewing tool.