- Barrel project updates
- We recently emptied a barrel at Kevin’s house. It contained a saison, and we refilled it with a Golden Strong. The saison is full-bodied and has a very strong oak aroma, with an intense buttery flavor. It drinks almost like a chardonnay, but with a long, bitter finish. If I recall correctly, there weren’t enough Golden Strong contributions, so we left some saison in the barrel and added the Golden Strong on top of it.
- The other barrel at Kevin’s house currently contains a Barleywine that is almost ready to be transferred. We’ll likely empty it in mid-to-late- April and move the empty barrel to Andy’s house. We will re-fill the barrel in late April with a Brown Ale. If you plan on participating in the Brown ale fill, please respond so we know how many gallons we’ve got. You’ll also need to brew your batch within the next few weeks. See recipe here: http://hqhomebrew.com/hq-big-barrel-brown-ale. It’s a bit higher gravity, so you’ll definitely want to make a starter, and give the batch time to reach final gravity before the barrel fill.
- Bus pub crawl
- Andy hasn’t heard back from the e-mails he’s been sending to breweries, but that shouldn’t stop us from moving forward with the pub crawl.
- Depending on how many people we get (ideally 35-45), the cost may be around $40 a head.
- Current tentative date for this will be the last weekend in April (28/29)
- Spring Fling multi-club picnic
- We don’t have a date for this yet. With April getting busy, and May full of holidays, Andy will be checking for a weekend that works and get back to us.
- Cost will likely be around $25 a club to cover the reservation cost.
- Frisbee Golf
- Kyle has volunteered to organize another Frisbee golf event. This will probably be sometime in August or September.
- Right now, it seems that Kyle and Kevin are the only ones going. Please sync up with them if you’re also planning on attending.
- Steins Beer Garden “Fifth Ingredient” competition
- AHA National Homebrew Competition
- World Cup of Beer
- NorCal Brew Fest
- Sonoma-Marin County Fair Shades of IPA Competition
- HQ Hazy IPA Competition June 12
- Santa Clara County Fair Competition
- I can’t find any information for this online, but Howard says there should be flyers at Fermentation Solutions.
- ET Barnett
- I have no information for this, other than the competition date being sometime in July. I’ll send out more information when I get it.
Style of the month
This month’s style was Helles, a clean, malty, gold-colored German lager with a smooth grainy-sweet malty flavor and a soft, dry finish. We sampled some Spaten Premium Lager, as well as a Weihenstephaner Original.
Club competition: Lagers
- There were 11 entries, spanning 10 different lager categories. I was really impressed with everything I tasted and would be glad to down a pint of any of those beers. Judging was incredibly difficult as most entries fit their styles very well, in addition to tasting great.
- 1st place in the competition ended up going to Howard, who brought a Dunkels Bock. The same recipe which won Best in Show at last years’ BABO. His beer was super clear, clean, and fit the style perfectly.
- 2nd place went to myself, with a Marzen inspired by Gordon Biersch’s recipe
- The next club competition (Hazy IPA) will be on June 12
- Special thanks to Howard for the guidance on lager styles, as well as Roger for putting together and running another great HQ brew competition!
- Howard shared a Belgian Tripel that he’s been focusing on recently
- Kyle shared a blend of the recent barrel aged saison, combined with another saison