Homebrew Con Seminars

Homebrew Con is an annual event hosted by the American Homebrewers Association (AHA). The conference includes dozens of seminars on beer, mead, and cider. Join the AHA to gain access to Homebrew Con seminars dating back to 2012. You won’t find a resource like this anywhere else!

Brewing Sour Beer at Home: Coolships, Wild Strains, and Commercial Sources

  • Speaker: Douglas Gladue
  • Track: Beer Styles
  • Homebrew Con 2019
  • Providence, RI

Homebrewers have many options for creating sour beer. Three of the most common are spontaneous fermentation in a coolship, isolating specific pure souring bacteria from the environment, and purchasing commercial microbe strains or blends. We will examine all three procedures for souring homebrew and discuss the pros and cons of …More

Brut IPA: Birth of a New Style

  • Speaker: Greg Irving
  • Track: Beer Styles
  • Homebrew Con 2019
  • Providence, RI

Brut IPA has emerged from the turbid world of murky IPA haze as a new style that is brilliantly clear, effervescent, full of hop flavor and aroma, low on bitterness, and bone dry. Come learn all about the Champagne-like quality of brut IPA in this session. Topics covered will include …More

Biggest Mistakes in Sour Beer Making

  • Speaker: Jay Goodwin
  • Track: Beer Styles
  • Homebrew Con 2018
  • Portland, OR

Perhaps the most difficult style of beer to execute well, sour beer is becoming increasingly popular for both home- and pro brewers. In this seminar, Jay Goodwin shares a few pitfalls of sour beer making from some of the best brewers in the world. From Cantillon and Rodenbach to Russian …More

Burton Ale

  • Speaker: Bill Schneller
  • Track: Beer Styles
  • Homebrew Con 2018
  • Portland, OR

Burton ale is the parent style of barleywine and old ale. It was a staple of British brewing from the 1820s through the 1950s and 1960s, when it died out. Like most beers, it changed over the course of time. We’ll explore the history of Burton ale and learn how …More

Gluten-Free Homebrewing: No Barley, Wheat or Rye

  • Speaker: Robert Keifer
  • Track: Beer Styles
  • Homebrew Con 2018
  • Portland, OR

In this talk, Robert Keifer will relate his own story of gluten-free brewing and offer various tips and tricks that he has learned over the years. The presentation will include an opportunity to taste a selection of gluten-free versions of popular beer styles.

The Style Hunter

  • Speaker: Gordon Strong
  • Track: Beer Styles
  • Homebrew Con 2018
  • Portland, OR

The 2015 BJCP Style Guidelines added several new styles, so it’s complete now, right? Not so fast. New styles continue to be created and evolve, while historical styles are rediscovered and gain new interest. Join Gordon Strong, principal author of the style guidelines, in an exploration of new and old …More

The XXX Story of Australian Old Ale

  • Speaker: Peter Symons
  • Track: Beer Styles
  • Homebrew Con 2018
  • Portland, OR

Australian old ale is as distinctive an Australian style as Australian sparkling ale, but it’s not the same as English old ale, nor is it a porter derivative. Learn how XXX became old, discover details of Australian brewing techniques across different eras, and discuss the characteristics of this distinctive style. …More

Brewing and Enjoying Smoked Beer

  • Speaker: Larry Reuter
  • Track: Beer Styles
  • Homebrew Con 2017
  • Minneapolis, MN

Do you enjoy classic smoked beer styles like rauchbier, Grodziskie, and Lichtenhainer? In this seminar, we will discuss popular smoked beer styles available in our favorite beer stores, including a bit of history. We’ll also examine the various types of smoked malt available to homebrewers, and most importantly, we’ll learn …More

Brewing Berliner Weisse: Moving Beyond Kettle Souring

  • Speaker: Jace Marti
  • Track: Beer Styles
  • Homebrew Con 2017
  • Minneapolis, MN

This session is all about slowing things down. Join us as we take a deep dive into the historical brewing techniques of Berliner weisse, as they reveal some surprising facts about a style that has been mostly relegated to kettle souring. We’ll go behind the scenes and discuss traditional production …More

Hardcore Mild

  • Speaker: Adam Stine
  • Track: Beer Styles
  • Homebrew Con 2017
  • Minneapolis, MN

Mild ale is a style with a long, sometimes confusing history. It’s rare to find commercially brewed milds in the US, so homebrewers who want a pint of mild often need to brew it themselves. Luckily, it’s a relatively quick and inexpensive style to brew at home. Mild ale can …More

My Milkshake Brings All the Boys to the Yard: Brewing New England IPAs

  • Speakers: Brian HallMalcolm Frazer
  • Track: Beer Styles
  • Homebrew Con 2017
  • Minneapolis, MN

New England Style IPA (NEIPA) showcases some of the best hop flavors and aromas to be found in beer, and it’s growing in popularity. Ed and Brian will shed light on this hazy, sometimes-controversial style and discuss the recipe formation and brewing techniques you need to create the crushable hop …More

Origins and Evolution of Australian Sparkling Ale

  • Speaker: Peter Symons
  • Track: Beer Styles
  • Homebrew Con 2017
  • Minneapolis, MN

Australian sparkling ale is in the 2015 BJCP Guidelines as Category 12.B., and now is a great time to explore this style in depth. This seminar includes details of brewing techniques across different eras and how these techniques might have influenced the flavors and development of Australian sparkling ale. Recreations …More

The Big Mo: Molasses Beer, America’s Forgotten Beer Style

  • Speaker: Frank Clark
  • Track: Beer Styles
  • Homebrew Con 2017
  • Minneapolis, MN

Early Americans often made their beer without malt—they used molasses instead! Why would they do this, and what kinds of beer did they make? Join beer historian and master of historic foodways Frank Clark as he explores America’s forgotten beer style, molasses beer! This beer was one of the most …More

Regional American IPA: What’s Up with All the Crystal Malt?

  • Speakers: Carrie KnoseFavio GarciaPaul Sangster
  • Track: Beer Styles
  • Homebrew Con 2016
  • Baltimore, MD

This seminar will discuss the differences among East Coast, West Coast and Midwest American style IPAs. We will compare and contrast each variation and show recipe examples highlighting the differences. The panel will include professional brewers from each region discussing their area’s customer preferences and where they see the market …More

Trouble-Free Tart Beers: Alternative Souring Methods

  • Speaker: Mary Izett
  • Track: Beer Styles
  • Homebrew Con 2016
  • Baltimore, MD

Want to make complex, tart beers in a fraction of the time and with minimal risk of cross-contaminating your equipment? Blending, kettle souring and alternative ingredients are three methods that you can use at home to produce a number of sour beers, including Berliner Weisses, Goses, Lichtenhainers, faux Flanders reds …More

Welcome to the Dark Side! The Evolution of Porter

  • Speaker: Frank Clark
  • Track: Beer Styles
  • Homebrew Con 2016
  • Baltimore, MD

Journey into the past of porter with beer historian Frank Clark. We will look at the murky origins of porter and how it evolved into one of the most popular beers of the 18th century, as well as its slow decline in the 19th century and eventual rebirth in the …More

Avoiding a D-bomb: A Key to Understanding Diacetyl

  • Speaker: Kara Taylor
  • Track: Beer Styles
  • Homebrew Con 2015
  • San Diego, CA

Diacetyl is one of the more common off flavors seen in beer. Learn what causes diacetyl, how to avoid it and what it actually tastes like.

Blurring the Style Guidelines: Brewing Great, Mixed-Style Beers

  • Speaker: Peter Zien
  • Track: Beer Styles
  • Homebrew Con 2015
  • San Diego, CA

Style guidelines provide excellent definitions of world-aclaimed beer types. However, they are only guidelines and the creative brewer can break free to create unique beers that don’t necessarily fall into a single style category.

Brewing Session Beer

  • Speaker: Andrew Mitchell
  • Track: Beer Styles
  • Homebrew Con 2015
  • San Diego, CA

Session beers have been gaining popularity over the last several years, especially now that many breweries are making session IPAs. Andrew will discuss traditional session ale styles, newer and less common styles, and recipe and process considerations to take into account when writing recipes and brewing beers with lower alcohol …More

Czech Lagers: History, Brewing, Judging

  • Speakers: Bob HallRandy Scorby
  • Track: Beer Styles
  • Homebrew Con 2015
  • San Diego, CA

In this seminar, Bob Hall and Randy Scorby will describe the four “new” Czech styles in the BJCP style guidelines. Czech lagers are more diverse than simply pilsners and range from delicate light lagers to malty and intense dark lagers. Bob and Randy will describe the history of these beers, …More

How to Brew, Blend and Maintain an Acid Beer

  • Speaker: Jeff Crane
  • Track: Beer Styles
  • Homebrew Con 2015
  • San Diego, CA

Acid beer is an important component for blending sour beers as well as adding complexity to other beer styles. To brew acid beer on the homebrew scale, it’s important to have a practical knowledge base of lactobacillius fermentation and best practices for controlling the environment for optimal results. Samples of …More

In Pursuit of Perfection: Hefeweizen Project

  • Speaker: Paula Cartwright
  • Track: Beer Styles
  • Homebrew Con 2015
  • San Diego, CA

This seminar will cover the process of how to eliminate an off flavor in hefeweizens. Processes covered include yeast trial (side by side comparison of four hefe yeast strains on a single batch of beer); grain trial (side by side mashing of six different base malts); and pitch rate and …More

Taking Funky Beers from Homebrew to Pro

  • Speaker: Peter Perrecone
  • Track: Beer Styles
  • Homebrew Con 2015
  • San Diego, CA

Peter will talk about where to find funky and wild strains and how to grow them up and use them. He’ll also discuss the different and important ways in which malt and hops affect the beer.

2014 BJCP Style Guidelines

  • Speaker: Gordon Strong
  • Track: Beer Styles
  • Homebrew Con 2014
  • Grand Rapids, MI

Gordon Strong, Beer Judge Certification Program (BJCP) president and author of Brewing Better Beer, will explain the updated 2014 BJCP style guidelines.

Current Techniques and Recent Developments for Brewing Great IPAs

  • Speaker: Mitch Steele
  • Track: Beer Styles
  • Homebrew Con 2013
  • Philadelphia, PA

In a follow-up to last year’s presentation on brewing historical IPAs, this year’s presentation focuses on current craft brewing techniques to brew other great IPAs. We will discuss hop varieties, hop products, alternative hopping schedules, and methods to maximize hop flavor in beer. We’ll also review IPA style variations, such …More

A Perspective on Brewing Berliner Weisse-style Beer… with Beer!

  • Speakers: Jason KahlerJess Caudil
  • Track: Beer Styles
  • Homebrew Con 2012
  • Bellvue, WA

Berliner Weisse can be a tough beer to produce. This presentation will cover the process the speakers have examined over the years and also provide a practical description of how they brewed and fermented this beer at a 7 bbl brewery.

Brewing Techniques for Historical IPA

  • Speaker: Mitch Steele
  • Track: Beer Styles
  • Homebrew Con 2012
  • Bellvue, WA

India Pale Ale has gone through several stylistic revisions in its 250 years of existence. In this presentation, a brief summary of the history of IPA will be reviewed, along with two complete recipes taken from brewlogs from the 1800s and one more recent recipe. The recipes will be compared …More

Thank you; I’ll Have Another

  • Speaker: Jennifer Talley
  • Track: Beer Styles
  • Homebrew Con 2012
  • Bellvue, WA

Jennifer will explore the growing popularity of session beers and why they are a perfect fit for the craft industry. In addition, the differing ways to tackle a session beer recipe will be discussed, including the malt bill, mash profile, hopping and more.