High Plains Draughters October 1996


I. Last Meeting
II. Next Meeting
III. Great American Beer Festival
IV. October Competitions
V. October Events
VI. 1997 AHA Club-Only Competition Schedule
VII. Winners Circle
VIII. Letter to the Editor
XI. New at the Brewshops
X. November Meeting

I. Last Meeting

With the brewing season starting to heat up, we had a good crowd on hand for September's meeting. The "Porter, Then and Now" program wen over well, with lots of good info and a tasting of five different porter recipes. Joe Bocock brought a split batch fermented with two different kinds of yeasts and the difference in flavor profiles was quite large. The American yeast (Chico?) really allowed the malt flavors to shine while the English yeast (Saccromyces Supply Co.?) contributed minerally, woody character. Both were excellent. Other highlights? Doug Moller brought a half-keg of marvelous weizenbier, brewed on his home system. It was truly Bavarian in nature, very smooth with lots of phenolic/clove/banana character. Doug promised to make the yeast available to interested parties.

Back to the Table of Contents


II. Next Meeting

Get set for the High Plains Draughter's annual Oktoberfest celebration, Sunday, October 20th, 2:30 p.m. in Crown Heights Park. We'll have the usual brats and kraut, so whip up one of your best German side dishes and bring it along. And let's not forget a good strudel or two. We'll be awarding the Best of Fest prizes, doing the Chicken Dance, and 'festing in general. It's a family affair, so load up the kids, in-laws, grandparents and whomever. See you there!

Back to the Table of Contents


III. Great American Beer Festival

Sounds like the GABF was the usual gas. Attendees reported excellent beers and fun all 'round. Check out the photos included (courtesy of June Larrow) to see some of the gang hanging with Charlie Papazian and Pierre Celis. Texas brewers were well-represented in the medal arena, with some 7 medals, including a couple of golds. Dallas, Austin and Addison all boasted winners.

Back to the Table of Contents


IV. October Competitions

We've been waiting for one of these and it's finally happening, albeit on very short notice. The Bricktown Brewery is sponsoring a homebrew competition in conjunction with their Oktoberfest celebration on Friday, the 18th. It will be a bit of a different type of contest in that there will be only three categories: Ales, Lagers and Specialty Beers (those brewed with herbs, spices or other special ingredients). The entry form requires that you identify the beer style and all will be judged according to standard AHA guidelines. The top five finishers will then be assessed by Doug Moller for brewability, because the winner willl get to brew his or her recipe with Doug, to be served as a seasonal beer at the Bricktown Brewery! Oh, and there's a $100 first prize as well. Entry forms may be picked up at the Brewery, Professional Brewers or S.W. Brewer's Outlet. A single bottle of beer is required and it must be turned in, along with the entry form, at any of the above locations by October 16th. Don't miss this one!

Don't forget to get your entries in for the AHA Club-only Best of Fest competition. They are due by noon of the 11th at Professional Brewer's or S.W. Brewer's Outlet. Categories include Vienna Lagers and Marzen/Oktoberfests.

Back to the Table of Contents


V. October Events

On October 12th, the Tulsa Brewing Company (71st and Memorial) will hold their annual brewfest. Tasting will be held from 5:00 p.m. to 10:00 p.m. $14 gets you in the door with a bottomless mug and beers from Blue Moon, Pete's Place, Coach's, Bricktown and Interurban to sample. Strong beers will include T-Towne Red and T-Towne Lager, Redding Golden Ale, Newcastle Brown Ale and Boulevard Wheat. A homebrew competition will be held, with the winning beer to be brewed and served at TBC.

Closer to home, the Bricktown Brewer will sponsor it's annual Oktoberfest Celebration in the Brewery parking lot on Friday, October 18th. The event will last from 5:00 p.m. until 1:00 a.m. There will be some 18 tents filled with food, brews, cigars and fun. Brian Jester promises that this will be the biggest and best Oktoberfest celebration ever.

Five local bands will be featured on stage with a traditional German polka band filling in the downtimes. Some 13 breweries or brewpubs have committed to offering their beers, including Royal Bavaria, Belle Isle, Coach's, TBC, Pete's Place, Weidmans and T-Towne. Also included will be specialty beers from the big boys--Bud, Coors and Miller. A homebrew competition (see above) is slated as well.

Admission is $5.00, which entitles you to a mug and 5 tokens. Samples (4 ounces) are one token and full beers are 2 tokens. All tokens may also be used toward a wide range of food items.

Back to the Table of Contents


VI. 1997 AHA Club-Only Competition Schedule

We just received the notice for upcoming AHA Club-Only competition dates. The HPD club competition will usually take place a week or two before the national entry deadlines. Details will be posted in plenty of time for you to enter your beers. However, you probably want to note the following dates and plan your brewing schedule accordingly.

Hail to Ale January 27, 1997
Luscious Lager March 10, 1997
Bock is Best May 19, 1997
Weiss is Nice October 20, 1997
Bitter Mania December 1, 1997

We will include the exact AHA style guidelines in forthcoming newsletter issues. A copy of all style guidelines will be available at the club site on the World Wide Web (http://www.draughters.com), the warehouse/club of Professional Brewers LLC and at other locations to be announced.

Back to the Table of Contents


VII. Winners Circle

Joe Bocock's Dunkel Dazzler placed third in dark lagers at the North Texas State Fair competition last August. It's a smooth, dark German lager, perfect for the Christmas season.

Back to the Table of Contents


VIII. Letter to the Editor

This our first, but hopefully not last. A short explanation: Tim Nagode, HPD newsletter editor, won the recent AHA Mead Magic Club-only competition.

Dear editor of the HPD Newsletter,

Congratulations once again on the winning "methaglin" you inadvertently submitted in the "traditional" category. In regard to seeking some information about whether or not hops can be used in a "traditional mead", I offer two observations.

First, from a scientific standpoint, hops are officially classified as an herb. If hops are herbs, and metheglin is mead flavored with herbs, then hopped mead would necessarily be metheglin. (A perfect Aristotelian syllogism!)

Second, if we were to refer (a la Lloyd) to the official 1996 Category Descriptions of the American Homebrew Association, we sould find that Category 25a (Traditional Mead) specifies: "No flavors other than honey." I'm sure you would agree that Saaz hops contribute a specific flavor, namely "bitterness" (and a variety of additional olfactory components as well). You would agree, would you not, that the flavor profile of the honey would be significantly altered by the addition of hops?

Again, as I mentioned before, your "not-so-traditional" traditional mead was really first class. But, as the "Master Brewers" of the organization, we need to make sure we agree about the nature of these categories if we are to help others brew to style. As you noted, this was only our first run at mead judging, and I guess we did pretty well for novices. Maybe next year we should make a carefully constructed entry form that spells out the rules of the game. Anyway, I'll be interested in seeing what the national judges have to say on your judging sheets.

Sincerely,
Dr. Stephen Law

Dr. Law's points are well taken and if the editor were argumentative, he might say something like this:

As to the scientific standpoint, one cannot argue with an Aristotelian syllogism. However, a Papazianesque diatribe may be in order.

Regarding your point concerning the AHA Category Descriptions, I must disagree that hops necessarily contribute flavor/aroma characteristics or "significantly alter" the flavor profile of honey. When used in minute amounts and with short boil times, as in the winning recipe, they become synergistic, enhancing the overall effect without being preceptible. The AHA guidelines define aroma and flavor profiles that the judges must be able to perceive. In fact, an entry would necessarily be graded down if it did not display the appropriate characteristics of the category.

Additionally, the AHA Category Descriptions do not dictate recipe formulation. That is the creative domain of the brewer. To remove the possibility of the "secret ingredient" is to curtail a stimulating part of the brewing process. These ingredients do not inherently place a brew outside the guidelines defined by the AHA. If a brewer were to make a pale ale and add a touch of roast barley for color, it would still qualify as a pale ale, even though roast barley is not a "traditional" pale ale ingredient. If roast barley were added to the point that "roastiness" appeared in aroma and/or flavor, then the beer could no longer be considered a pale ale.

I hate returning to that scientific thing, but it occurs to me that one AMA Ambrosia Adventure gold medal winner did knowingly infuse a Rosemary Sack (metheglin) with 2 teaspoons of citric (fruit) acid. According to guidelines, metheglin may not contain fruit components. If a mead is made with fruit components and metheglin may not include fruit components, then that mead is necessarily not a metheglin. E'tu, Brute?

Ed.

If you have opinions on this topic (or others) and would like to contribute, please feel free to do so. Letters may be faxed to the number listed at the bottom of the newsletter.

Back to the Table of Contents


XI. New at the Brewshops

Professional Brewers

It's fall and time to start kegging. We have three complete kegging systems in stock (one at the shop and two at the warehous/club) that feature a new steel CO2 tank. All are $180. A good group of articles on kegging is also available at the warehouse at no charge.

New exotic yeast from Saccromyces Supply Co. are on the way and should be in the shop by Saturday, October 12. These include Scotch Ale, German Wheat, Belgian Wit, Czech Pilsner and German Lager. These supplement the most popular SSC yeasts--U.S. Ale, English Ale, and Irish Ale.

Classes this month are Brewing 101 on Saturday, October 12 and Brewing 102 (intermediate/advanced) on Saturday, October 26. All begin at 10:00 a.m. The correct address for the venue is 617-619 NW 67th (the warehouse).

Back to the Table of Contents


X. November Meeting

We haven't cogitated on a date yet. Rest assured it will be in November, probably mid-month. Details next ish.

That's all for now. If you have comments, contributions, gripes or whatever, feel free to contact one of the newsletter staff. They may be reached (at reasonable hours) at the following numbers: Rick Lloyd - 340-1977 Tim Nagode - 280-4957 (Fax 290-2754) Joe Bocock - 552-2256

See you on the 20th.... Hoppy brewing!!!

Back to the Table of Contents


Last Updated: Saturday, October 26, 1996
http://www.draughters.com
Send questions or comments to the
Web Bozo