EDITOR: Mark Taratoot
336 NW 12th St. Corvallis OR 97330-5929
club home page: http://www.peak.org/~taratoot/hotv.html
festival home page: http://www.peak.org/~taratoot/fest.html
The July meeting was held high up on Mary's Peak, at the invitation of Sam Holmes and his neighbor, Mike. Fifteen members navigated a winding, narrow road to get there and were greeted by an outdoor fire, nibble stuff, and some mighty good homebrew and commercial beer. As usual, we had a lot of fun and conversation and even managed to squeeze in some club business. Dave Wolf will contact Mary's Peak Lagers' prez Dean Bautz regarding a local beer/dinner event; Matt Martel had looked into a Portland pub crawl in August, but found that many of our members had other summertime commitments. So the date is now Saturday, October 19th. Details later, but mark your calendar now.
We agreed on Saturday, August 10th for a big-time brew off at my house. The purpose is two-fold. It will be a learning situation for all of us, and also a chance to get perhaps 30 gallons of homebrew for the September picnic. I'll be on the phone for this one as you may not get the newsletter in time.
The picnic flier will be mailed out in late August. Remember the date is September 21st and five clubs will be attending. Committees will be forming up soon and I'll be relying on those who were so generous with their time last year.
Good news!! The membership has approved the purchase of a complete five pound CO2 system. It will be available to any dues-current member who needs it and will be checked out and in like a library book. We should have it by the August meeting which, by the way, will be at my house. If you need directions or other information, call me at 926-2286.
FST 251: Introduction to wines, beers, and spirits. A course designed to provide a descriptive introduction to the history, science, sensory, economics, and societal aspects of alcoholic beverages. This is a three credit course offered Tuesdays and Thursdays at 5:00-6:20 pm. Prerequisites: High school biology and chemistry. Open to any major. CRN # 14153.
FST 460.560: Brewing science and analysis. Chemistry, microbiology, and engineering of brewing operations. Compositional analysis of barley, malt, hops, water, and beer. Laboratory techniques for detection and monitoring microorganisms of importance to brewing. This is a four credit course offered Tuesdays and Thursdays at 1:00-2:20 pm (lecture) and Thursday and 2:30-5:00 pm (laboratory). Prerequisite: MB 302 (general microbiology). CRN # 14154 and 14155.
For more information contact: Dr. M.A. Daeschel at 737-6519 or at email@example.com. Department of Food Science and Technology.
Meetings are held on the third Wednesday of each month. Meetings begin at 6:58 pm sharp. There is no cover charge, however, a strict dress code is enforced. Socks are optional, but please remember to wear your tuxedo. Last month a few people forgot their bow-ties and were sent home early. And, by the way, Lee, what was that secret handshake all about anyway.
Enough silliness. This month's meeting will be held at the home of the Honorable and Exalted chieftain of our band of enlightened rogues, Lee Smith. In all likelihood, Lee will have whipped up a batch of his famous Louisiana Alligator toes. I just wonder what they do with the rest of the 'gator. I guess that is where the get Abita Turbo Dog. Turbo Gator just probably didn't sound as quenching. And, I think it has more of a "bite." For those who don't know how to find Lee's house, please see the map.
The September meeting will be held at the home of Kim Kittridge. Directions to Kim's Corvallis ranch will be in next month's newsletter.
The site for the October meeting is still up for grabs. Wanna have it at your place?
This year's visit to the Oregon Brewer's Festival saw summer heat of 95 degrees in a baking sun. Also, access to the two beer tents was restricted to one entrance each, with a very long line. Not to mention that there was no grass - it had all been replaced with sand! All in all, it was hot, dusty, and crowded.
I was lucky there was so much good beer.
Taking Friday afternoon off from work was necessary to be able to taste most of the beers that I was after before the crowds got unbearable. My strategy this year was to scan the festival program to locate low gravity beers that are stylistically unique or interesting, and special fest beers from favorite regional breweries. On finding said beers, I would *normally* use the map included with the program to plan out the day's tasting. The absence of said map was quite a hindrance this year, and is hoped to not be repeated next year!
Here are my subjective, at times mis-informed notes of the beers I tasted, in no particular order:
One sip of Rogue's I2 (that's "I squared", not "12" as the Portland newspaper listed) Imperial IPA. Described as a 1.080, 65 IBU IPA, with Beeston Floor malted Pipken Pale malt, and Cascade, Saaz, and Kent Goldings hops. It had a strong alcohol aftertaste, but it would probably be great as an after dinner aperitif.
Bridgeport's gravity-fed IPA was everything that an IPA should be. Loads of hops, low carbonation, good malt flavor. I like this brewery more all the time.
Hair of the Dog's Small Beer (stylistically described as an "Oregon Ale"), which debuted at the festival. This is a smaller version of their fantastic Adambier, at only 1.052. I liked this one. Rich, smoky, chocolate flavors. Yummy!
Deschutes Brewery's Deschutes Export (Dortmunder) 1.053 30 IBU. Pretty much everything Deschutes does rates from good to excellent. I'm especially pleased when they do a lager, and it is a treat to see some less common styles explored. I feel their version was over hopped for style, almost to a pilsner range. Nonetheless, it was clean, malty, crisp, and refreshing. More, more please!
Goose Island Beer Co. from Chicago brought Goose Island Saison. 1.064 28 IBU. This is another style I would like to see more of. "Complex" is a good description. No single flavor dominates, and I kept finding new flavors with every sip. Good stuff, but I had not thought of Saison as being this high gravity. I'll have to review my style references. My shift to pour was Saturday afternoon, and I chose to pour Tabernash Weiss (Bavarian Weiss Beer). Their Weiss is probably the best interpretation of the style brewed in the United States. I had a blast "selling" this beer, and it was very popular. A very busy booth, and with good reason. Crisp, estery, good wheat flavor, it has it all. I had a great time talking with people about this beer while pouring! An estimated 85,000 visitors patronized the OBF this year, making it the largest (by that measure) OBF ever, and the third largest such festival in the world. 88 brewers were to be represented. My impression of this year's festival is that it was better than last year's for beer, but far, far worse for logistics like crowding and long, baking hot waiting lines.
I was able to tolerate the crowd by imagining that I was attending a NorthWest version of Octoberfest. Our festival is hugely popular, and for good reason. It brings an impressive selection of excellent beers together in one place. The beers are in good shape, and many breweries use the festival to showcase their most original offerings. It's always worth while to attend!
This month, I have collected a couple of "top ten" lists for your enjoyment. Please read and enjoy. I am too busy to actually write anything myself, so I will do what all good homebrew club newsletter editors do... borrow! I believe it was Woody Guthrie who said --and I am stealing this quote-- "Plagiarism is basic to our culture." With that in mind, here is the rest of the newsletter:
First, a list to help identify a problem many of us have. Admit it. You have it too! Haven't you ever sent back a glass of beer because it was too cold? Haven't you ever received a funny look for sticking your nose WAY too far into your pint glass? Haven't you ever ......
The addiction of which I speak is beer. Sure most people like beer, but some of us (myself included) have this addiction. Does that mean that I and people like me are lushes? No, I don't think so. It's always tempting to over generalize, but in this case I believe it's true. How's does the addiction begin? Well with me it began with the realization that there is more to beer than Budweiser and Miller. This early exploration began with trying as many different brands as possible. Things have gotten progressively worse since then. I am now fully addicted to beer and brewing. Reprinted here by the permission of no one as a public service are the
10. You lay awake at night dreaming up new beer recipes
(some of them weird) such as watermelon lambic.
9. You make vacation plans around beer stops such as breweries, brewpubs, and beer fests.
8. Your main criterion when buying a house is whether it has a basement to set up your home brewery.
7. Your ideal vacation is beer camp.
6. You read everything you can on beer and brewing.
5. Your mother-in-law knows about no. 6 and sends you weekly clippings from magazines, newspapers and any other printed media.
4. Your mother-in-law plans for your week-long Thanksgiving holiday visit by planning your beer itinerary to include the newest brewpubs and breweries since last year's visit.
3. You have three "fridges" and only one is for food.
2. You seek out flea markets and yard sales due solely to the possibility you might find a cool beer glass or breweriana.
1. You know what the hell breweriana means.
When Christian students at Texas A&M University donned pro-abstinence T-shirts bearing the legend "Top 10 Reasons Why Jesus is Better than Beer," Steve Berry of Texas A&M's Agnostic & Atheistic Student Group knew how to respond:
10. No one will kill you for not drinking Beer.
9. Beer doesn't tell you how to have sex.
8. Beer has never caused a major war.
7. They don't force Beer on minors who can't think for themselves.
6. When you have Beer, you don't knock on people's doors trying to give it away.
5. Nobody's ever been burned at the stake, hanged or tortured over their brand of Beer.
4. You don't have to wait over 2,000 years for a second Beer.
3. There are laws saying that Beer labels can't lie to you.
2. You can prove you have a Beer.
1. If you've devoted your life to Beer, there are groups to help you stop.
Ok, it's over now.
These are from the calendar hanging on my office wall. Each month it lists (often bad) recipes for alcoholic drinks based on some theme, like rum, tequila, or whatever. This month, it is beer. Here goes:
Shandy Gaff: Fill highball glass halfway up with ginger ale; fill with beer.
Ginger Gaff: Follow above instructions, but substitute ginger beer for ginger ale.
Beer Bitters: Sprinkle 2 dashes Angostura bitters in bottom of glass or stein. Fill up with beer.
Dark Beer Bitters: Follow above recipe but substitute dark beer for beer, orange bitters for Angostura.
Boilermaker: Drink whiskey from shot glass; sip beer slowly as chaser. Note: the amount of beer to drink in proportion to the whiskey taken is a matter of debate.