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Congratulations to the AHA COC Ant Hayes Memorial Burton (Old Ale) winners!


Forty two entries from 22 states were entered into the 2012 AHA Club Only November/December Competition that was judged this past Saturday, November 17th at Liberty Street Brewing Company in Plymouth, Michigan. The competition was hosted by the Ann Arbor Brewers Guild, and was assisted by The CRAFT Homebrewers Club as well. The Ant Hayes Memorial Burton (Old Ale) competition paid homage to our dear friend, Ant, who himself “went for a Burton”. All entries were 19-A, Old Ale.

Congratulations to the following winners:
•   First Place: Darren Bystrom and his assistant Nick Crabb of Pullman, WA, representing the Homebrewers of the Palouse, with a 19a Old Ale, “Mash of the Titans”.
•   Second Place: Nate Nowak of Cordova, TN, representing the Bluff City Brewers and Connoisseurs, with a 19a Old Ale, “Old Kerfuffle”.
•   Third Place: Roger Masson of Oak Park, IL, representing the Brewers of South Suburbia, with a 19a Old Ale, “Piloncillo Old Ale”
•   Honorable Mention was given to both Geoff Bragg of Livermore, CA, representing the Mad Zymurgists with his “Ye Olde Ale’, and Brian Hoesing of Lincoln, NE, representing the Lincoln Lagers, with his “Old Man River” Old Ale.

During the Best of Show judging, Jeff Renner received a phone call from his friend Llewellyn Janse van Rensburg in Johannesburg, South Africa.  Llewellyn was a friend of Ant Hayes, and the two of them organized the first BJCP exam outside of North America in Johannesburg, which Jeff administered.  Llewellyn wanted to let the AABG that he was thinking of us and of Ant during the judging.  On the anniversary of Ant's death this past May, he impulsively took the day off of work and brewed Ant's "Absent Friends" Burton Ale recipe.  He said that he was about to open a bottle.

It was good to feel that Ant was present in the memories of those across the world who knew him and who miss him.

Ant was an honorary AABG member at the NHC's in Cincinnati and Minneapolis. His presentations on lesser known British beers were excellent. Llewellyn was at the Cincinnati NHC with Ant. When I heard that he had called Jeff Renner during the BoS judging, that was a very outstanding moment between some friends brought together by the homebrewing hobby and judging homebrewed beer.

I raise a toast right at the moment to Ant Hayes. Only an Ordinary Bitter, but I hope he would understand.


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