National Homebrew Conference
I am wiggling in my seat as I type this because the 2014 National Homebrew Conference (NHC) is right around the corner. This year’s conference is being held in Grand Rapids, Michigan, which just happens to be where I went to college and is near my hometown in West Michigan. The conference theme, “Mashing In Michigan” is a opportunity for 4, 000 homebrewers like myself to come together and learn specifics about making better beer, discussing processes, procedures, chemistry, getting professional advice and obviously enjoying homebrewed beer.
This year’s NHC will have 55 different seminars, 80 expert speakers, a keynote address by the founders of Founders Brewing Company and massive parties where attendees enjoy homebrews from hundreds of homebrew clubs from across the country. I have had the opportunity to determine the sessions I will be attending which include, but not limited to, The shenanigans of Barrel Aging, Long Live Lagers, Water Chemistry and Beer PH and 2014 BJCP style guideline update. The conference offers something for everyone. Whether you are a novice brewer or advanced, the NHC pulls in the leading experts on brewing and offers an opportunity for you to gather knowledge and apply it at home.
The Homebrew Expo and Beer City Social Club is an evening event where attendees get an opportunity to view exhibitions of equipment by sponsors and enjoy beer from homebrew clubs. From what I hear, the club night is one not to be missed. This year, there will be over 70 clubs pouring multiple beers for all to enjoy. As you can imagine, the brewers bring their A-game as they want to make a good impression on their peers. I am excited to meet new people, sample some amazing homebrew and look at some equipment.
In addition to the conference, the National Homebrew Competition will be happening. During the conference, the final round of beer will be judged. This is an exciting time as my good friend and I have a Munich Dunkel in the final round. We took 2nd in the 1st round and are eagerly waiting to see the outcome of the final round. In addition to the competition, the conference ends with a Grand Banquet and Awards Ceremony. This is when homebrew winners are awarded medals and is an overall time to come together and support fellow homebrewers.
I leave this weekend for Michigan. My family and I decided to turn the conference into an opportunity to go back home and visit family. Got to love family vacation and beer! Of course I will be writing about my experience upon my return. In the mean time, you might want to go, you can register here. Be sure to register soon as registration ends this week. If not, maybe you can join me in San Diego for the 2015 National Homebrew Conference. Cheers and remember, Relax And Have A Homebrew (RAHAHB).