We had a productive meeting last night. The presentation by Spearhead Hops, located in Ohio, was quite interesting. It renewed my interest in trying to grow hops. You can try their product by visiting their website, www.SpearheadHops.com. Enter the codeword HOMEBREW (in all caps) to get 10% off your order. If you need any followup information just email Thomas at email@example.com.
The National Homebrew Con will be online again this year. I enjoyed the format last year and will attend again this year, June 17-19. Registration opens April 6. Price is just $99. You get access to ALL the presentations after the Con all year!
Competitions are still happening. The Hurricane, Hogtown, and The Coconut Cub are all listed on www.ReggieBeer.com.
Next month we’ll meet in person at the Bootleggers Brewery. We have the back patio reserved. There will be plenty of room to spread out, with open-air ventilation, and masks recommended, we will share our brews in a safe manner. It’ll be good to see our members in person again.
If you haven’t paid your dues, just visit the website to use PayPal/Credit Card, or contact our Treasurer, Brian Howsare. It’s only $20 for the year. Most of this goes to cover our insurance for pouring events. You get a year of meetings/tastings, discounts at the Bootleggers Store and Brewery, and a club tasting glass (while supply lasts, if current members agree to this idea.)
President, Brandon Bootleggers Homebrew Club
We're still meeting on Zoom monthly. We talk about what we're brewing, drinking, and planning to brew. We've had guests from other clubs join us. And we've watched some of the 2020 Virtual Home Brew Con presentations.
We've also managed to get the Beer Booth out to some COVID-Safe pouring and brewing events.
And we have a running club display at the Bootleggers BrewWorx home brew supply store on Oakfield Rd.
We're still meeting online with the Zoom app. While we miss sharing our brews at pouring events, a couple of our members have managed to exchange some of their beers by meeting briefly. Others have shared with friends and neighbors. The American Homebrewers Assoc. presentations from the former Director and from the last online Brew Con have helped keep things interesting. We learned more about the Kviek yeast at the last meeting. It lends itself to warm fermentation which is easy to do here in Florida where every day this summer has been in the 90's!
Still hoping to get a small meeting together soon. We have to keep an eye on the spread of the virus.
While we had hoped to be meeting in person again by now, being in the state with the most positive tests for COVID-19 made it necessary to meet on Zoom again. We each talked about what beers we've been brewing and drinking. Then, I shared one of the presentations from the recent National Homebrew Conference. We learned a lot about the history of the IPA and an effort by an archeologist to recreate the style complete with aged kegs and ship-like conditions. He was surprised that it turned out good enough to can!
I've been updating our public Facebook group and the membership in the club Facebook group. New members are always welcome. Just use the Contact page on this website to enter your info and make dues payment through PayPal. Join in the fun and learn more about our favorite beverage, BEER! Prost!
Our second meeting on Zoom included some excellent information and updates from everyone in attendance (about half of our club)! We started with some club business regarding our dues structure, which we will continue to discuss in our closed Facebook group. We'll also be discussin planning for when, where, and how to get back to in-person meetings.
Home Brew Con Online is June 18-20. I'll be attending and will report on the experience at our next meeting. Next year's Con is sheduled to be in San Diego. Joe Harrick will be attending the USF Brewing Course starting in August and we look forward to hearing about that experience as well.
Some other notable mentions:
Bru Growler Bar, Tampa https://www.brufl.com
Swan Brewing, Lakeland https://www.swanbrewing.com
Alafia Brewing, Gibsonton https://www.alafiabrewing.com
Recommended: Green's Gluten Free Beer and Kona Light
Kveik Registry yeast harvesting group on Facebook:
We're having Zoom meetings until it is safe to gather as a group again. This month we enjoyed a presentation by Gary Glass, Director of The American Homebrewers Assoc. from Boulder, Colorado. He talked about the history of home brewing and listened to some of our stories. Now we know some of the real history behind our name - Bootleggers! Turns out there was a boom in home brewing during prohibition. There's been a spike in online searches on the subject now with bars closed and people staying at home to help stop the spread of the Corona virus. Even our website has seen a little more activity.
While we're all practicing stay-at-home we were able to have our monthly meeting via Zoom this month. The American Homebrewers Association offered to provide a program, but it was unavailable on our usual club meeting day/time. They will attempt to schedule it on another day. Meanwhile, we put together a quick Zoom meeting and a few of us popped in to talk about what we're brewing and how we are attempting to continue to support our local craft breweries. Still hoping that the national BrewCon will happen in June, but it's too early to say if that will be able to happen safely. Prost!
We cancelled our March meeting, which would have been a tour of the new Bootleggers Brewing Co. facility on Causeway Blvd., in an effort to slow the spread of the pandemic virus. Be safe.
Thanks first of all to Lee Branham for stepping up to become our VP, and for providing our program with his lovely wife Katie! They provided us with a virtual tour of Belgium, Northern Belgium that is, sorry about the monk music, which would have been more appropriate for a tour of Southern Belgium. Didn't we taste a Trappist ale?
Anyway, we had lots of information to share along with tasting 9 or more beers. I lost count, LOL. IPA, Berliner, Belgians, Stout, Pils, Cider and Meed! Some of us will be tasting statewide winners of Best Florida Beers at the Brewers Ball March 8 in Waterworks Park, YUM!
We recapped our latest serving event Almost There in Safety Harbor and we're looking forward to serving next at the National Homebrew Con in Nashville in June. We'll be doing a Star Wars theme. I've got a crazy idea for our taps. Members will get a sneak peak on our private Facebook group page.
Don't forget to sign up to judge or steward the regional homebrew competition in April at 7venth Sun in Tampa. See https://www.brewingcompetition.com.
Bring a favorite recipe to the next meeting. We'll share all our tips and tricks for making better beer!
This was our best meeting in months! Good attendance, two A-B taste tests, and new members! Welcome, Joseph, Daryl, Mark and Lisa! And a special thanks to Mike from 4 Stacks Brewing for his beer tasting contribution.
Brian tested our tastebuds with a hops method comparison; whirlpool v. dry hopping. It was hard to decide which we liked better. Then he topped it off later with his hazelnut porter, YUM! Dean's IPA was also an excellent addition to this tasting experience. I'm still learning from all these amazing home brewers!
Ray also provided a bit of a taste test with his two meads. This will be a long-term study for us as we try one of these meads every other month to see how time has an important mellowing effect on meads. Thank you for this exceptional opportunity, Ray!
Lee and Katie entered a contest for brewing with a mystery ingredient. Thyme in a bitter, yes please. Do you have any pizza to go with that?!
Our newest members also contributed two very tasty beers to this meeting; a British brown and a porter. They may be new to brewing, but their beers are already good enough for competition. I hope they enjoyed the meeting and will look forward to continued participation in our club activities.
We'll be pouring at Almost There in Safety Harbor January 26, part of Tampa Bay Beer Week. Join us for a good cause and BEER!
New to brewing. So much to learn. Grateful to have this club's help!