The day was filled with seminars on a myriad of topics. There is nothing better first thing in the morning than listening to Stan Hieronymus talk about Trappist brewing. His topic was: What Monks Can Teach Us About Brewing. The take away from it all was to pitch cool and allow the temps to ramp after the onset of fermentation and to use a single yeast and work with the mash profile and fermentation temps to obtain the desired result.

The second seminar of the day came from Mitch Steele of Stone Brewing and was entitled: Herbs, Spices & Other Botanical Ingredients In Today’s Beer Recipes. Mitch went through a plethora of botanicals and his experience with their use in beers. What was nice is he announced some of their failures such as 07.07.07 which was so over the top with ginger it has only recently become drinkable. Most brewers will never divulge where things went wrong so it was refreshing to hear that during a talk.

After a brilliant lunch at Flanagan’s Irish Pub the lecture was from John Palmer and was entitled: Water Chemistry And Beer pH. As much as I respect John I actually preferred the beer which was presented which had no particular water chemistry manipulation. (John is on the left below.)

For the last seminar of the day it was Andrea Stanley and John Mallet in period costumes presenting: The Malt Nerds History Hour. The talk was on historical malt production and they presented a beer made from malt created in a somewhat historical fashion. John always has interesting presentations which are almost always discussing malt and this one did not disappoint.

Following the seminar session was the Conference Keynote Address which was presented by Mike Stevens & Dave Engbers of Founders. It was a great talk which detailed some of their trials and tribulations on the way to becoming the brewery they are today.

Later in the evening club night began with numerous booths and a plethora of beers. Nothing like 3,000 happy homebrewers with enough beer to fill several olympic swimming pools.

Stay tuned for the final day recap of seminars and meetings and the banquet.