There is already a “Joe” at my local club and even a “Joe T” on the forum, so JT will do! I started home brewing in the spring of 2013, mostly out of curiosity although I may have foolishly claimed it would save me money... I picked up an extract kit, made some very mediocre beer that was fermented too warm and I was hooked! I immediately began chasing improvements and upgrades, never really focusing on where I was, only where I wanted to be. All-grain, propane, bigger kettles and more questions soon followed.
Like most of my hobbies, this has rather turned into an obsession and I recently moved my operation indoors to the basement. I currently brew 5 gallon batches utilizing two 10 gallon kettles, Blichmann’s BoilCoils and a 10 gallon Igloo. For good measure, I’m upgrading this system with a 3rd kettle and a RIMS Rocket just as soon as a few spare doohickeys and thingamabobs arrive. Sites like brunwater, dennybrew, theelectricbrewery, themadfermentationist, basicbrewing, thebrewingnetwork, braukaiser, and many more have been a treasure trove of information coupled with forums like this. Books are great (and I have quite a few), homebrew shops are great, clubs are great too, but I have to say I’ve learned at least as much if not more online. I started out on NB’s forum but it wasn’t too long before I wanted a bit more and found the AHA. I really like the attitude here, so thanks to those reading for contributing to that.
On a personal note I’m a dad of two awesome youngsters and husband to my wife Liz, who graciously puts up with all of this. I’m a member of the AHA and Cincinnati Ohio’s Bloatarian Brewing League (actually writing this reminded me to go online and pay my dues). I brew various styles and while there are MANY I have yet to try and tackle, there aren’t any that I want to stay away from. I love the variety that beer brings.
Today was a bit of a new experience for me as I began fermenting my first sour beer, which cautiously sits on the opposite side of the basement from my normal staging area. This has all been a great ride so far and I keep learning more all the time. Thanks to all that have helped out and shared their own experiences, I hope to raise a glass with you sometime!