Thursday, November 22, 2007

Turkey Day!!!

Happy Thanksgiving, all!

Hope today went well for y'all, and that those traveling had/have a safe trip this weekend. Its such a busy season coming up, that we're going to forego an "official meeting" in December, but still have an "unofficial gathering" at the Coney on the second Tuesday of December. Hope everyone can make it to coverse about homebrew and beer in general.



Wednesday, November 14, 2007

November Meeting Notes

The Homebrewing Club met last night at The Coney in the upstairs hall at 8pm. Penn St. Nikolaus was freshly on tap and we started the evening with a round of beers. Due to other commitments, there were about five members missing who were present last month. There were no new members at this meeting.

After 15 minutes of socializing, we began the evening's program with a PowerPoint presentation by Bill Dietrich on the basics of extract brewing. Despite the experiences of the many people present, all of us walked away with some new things to think about. That's one of the nice things about brewing - just about every step can be done different ways, and there's a lot of room for personal preference (except, as Bill noted, sanitation ... all of us have to do that step!). It was a great talk. On behalf of the rest of the group, many thanks to Bill for his presentation. And, thanks to Erick Lauber for providing/setting up/running the laptop & digital projector on the Coney's screen.

After the talk, we had a few minutes of lively discussion about a few points of club business. The highlights were:

1. we suggested that the meetings be held the second Tuesday of every month (have to double check with The Coney). This allows us to have a set time every month that is easy to remember, regardless of date, and can be helpful when we advertise.

2. Because of the general hectic air of the holiday season, we will NOT have an official December meeting. There will be several people gathering, I'm sure, but we'll not have a formal presentation or tasting.

3. January's meeting will focus on another tasting and another presentation. Bill Dietrich has a DVD on all-grain brewing which he would like to show ... there are a few people interested in learning what it takes to move up to the next level of brewing.

4. We want to advertise and increase membership! We had a great turn out for the first meeting just by word of mouth and a few fliers. Let's up the ante. Talk to your friends & relatives, coworkers. Let's put some fliers at the local homebrew supply stores. We're going to look at radio ads and maybe an article/ad in the Gazette, too. Surely, there are more folks out there!

5.The first club 'goal' or competition, if you will, is going to be "Febtoberfest". The original framework for this comes from Dave Juart, and though it was modified a bit at the meeting, the premise remains the same: everybody brew something to be ready by February. We will then organize a special event (a weekend?) where everyone (and a guest?) will bring their brews to share. We can do some food pairings or have general appetizers, for example. We might ask a local brewer to come and 'judge' the entries and have a small prize for the winners, for example. We'll keep everyone posted, but in short we want to have a yearly event to call our own; one that promotes homebrewing and gets all club members involved.

After those few points of business, we got to the tastings:
1. Double Dub Bull Dubbel, an extract Belgian dubbel from Jon Defibaugh
2. Heavy Hefe, an extract pseudo-Weizenbock by Dave Juart
3. Not So Pale Ale, an all-grain dark pale ale (patent malt) from Bill Dietrich
4. Dry-Hopped Pale Ale, a dry-hopped extract from Jon Southard
5. Quad D's Deep Creek Porter 2007, extract from Dave Juart
6. Commonplace Coffee Porter, an all-grain porter flavored with Sumatran Mandheling coffee extract (from Commonplace) by Nate McElroy

Once the tastings were done, a few stuck around for a last round at the bar and to 'clean up' the remaining appetizers (Tuesday's is BOGO on the appetizers!).

All in all, another great meeting.

Monday, November 12, 2007

Meeting Reminder

Just a reminder (and an invitation) that our second meeting will be Tuesday, November 13 at 8pm at The Coney (642 Philadelphia Street). Join us for conversation, homebrew tastings, and a talk on the basics of extract brewing by Bill Dietrich.

See you there!