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!

Bringing a Brewery Quality Control Lab into Your Home

  • Speaker: Dr. Kevin McCabe
  • Track: Technical
  • Homebrew Con 2018
  • Portland, OR

The laboratory at Full Sail Brewing takes advantage of the latest technology and instrumentation to ensure beer consistency and quality, but many of the most important, high-impact techniques can be easily and inexpensively adapted for the homebrewer. From cell counts to sensory analysis, Dr. McCabe will walk the audience through …More

Build Your Own Electric Brew-in-a-Bag Brewery

  • Speaker: Josh Cihak
  • Track: Technical
  • Homebrew Con 2018
  • Portland, OR

This seminar discusses the benefits of brewing on an electric brew-in-a-bag (eBIAB) system and how you can build one for yourself. Electric brew-in-a-bag is a method for making high quality all-grain beer that has many benefits for new and experienced brewers alike. You will learn the components, construction, and processes …More

Homebrew on Draft: Setup Theory and Maintenance

  • Speaker: Michael Ferrari
  • Track: Technical
  • Homebrew Con 2018
  • Portland, OR

Join Michael Ferrari for this in-depth discussion of serving your homebrew on tap. We’ll go over how to build and maintain a clean, waste-free system. From draft system balance to cleaning and troubleshooting, you’ll learn to taste and share the best version of your beer!

Embrace Your Inner Nerd: Simple Steps to Setting up a Home Lab

  • Speaker: Zachary Taggart
  • Track: Technical
  • Homebrew Con 2017
  • Minneapolis, MN

This seminar outlines basic steps homebrewers can take to establish a small lab in their home. We will review equipment and procedures to get you up and running on cell counts, plating yeast samples, setting up a home yeast bank, and utilizing basic spreadsheets to track your experiments and brewing …More

Maintaining Quality after the Brew Day

  • Speaker: Warren Haskell
  • Track: Technical
  • Homebrew Con 2017
  • Minneapolis, MN

This presentation focuses on quality from keg to glass. With all the time and effort we spend making our beer, let’s make sure we serve it with equal care! Kegerators, keezers, jockey boxes, and party taps are common equipment, and its important to know how to properly clean and maintain …More

The Critical and Often Overlooked Spec: Final Gravity

  • Speaker: Brennan Greene
  • Track: Technical
  • Homebrew Con 2017
  • Minneapolis, MN

This seminar highlights the importance of final gravity (FG) to various beer styles and discusses how to achieve target FGs. Commercial brewers and homebrewers often don’t pay enough attention to FG, but doing so and adjusting accordingly can greatly improve the quality of your beer. We will discuss mass-produced light …More

DIY Kegerator / Keezer Design Using Off the Shelf Components

  • Speaker: Matthew Joyce
  • Track: Technical
  • Homebrew Con 2016
  • Baltimore, MD

There are some very interesting benefits to rolling your own temperature control board/logic for your kegerator. Matthew will discuss some of the benefits and pitfalls, and demonstrate a modular design he created using off the shelf parts/boards. This talk touches on sensors, microcontrollers and relays, with some discussion of the …More

Phenolic Compounds in Beer: The Good, the Bad, and the Ugly

  • Speaker: Mike Lentz
  • Track: Technical
  • Homebrew Con 2016
  • Baltimore, MD

Phenolic compounds play a major role in the aroma and flavor of many beers. They are often associated with beer spoilage, but also contribute positive and essential characteristics to certain beer styles, such as Bavarian weizen and many Belgian styles. What makes “good” phenolics good, and “bad” phenolics bad? The …More

Hosting Cask Ale Events

  • Speaker: Randy Baril
  • Track: Technical
  • Homebrew Con 2015
  • San Diego, CA

Homebrewers are already experts in making real ale. Take the next step and cask condition the beer! This serving method from the English tradition is a unique way to present your beer, especially when you’re planning on serving an entire keg anyway. Taking care of cask conditioned beer is a …More

Nitro Draught for the Homebrewer

  • Speaker: Juice Drapeau
  • Track: Technical
  • Homebrew Con 2015
  • San Diego, CA

Learn how to create the perfect nitro beer based on combining the correct temperature, pressure and time of gas in solution. Juice will provide proven techniques to help you create the perfect pour based on your specific equipment.

Draft System Design and Maintenance

  • Speaker: Tom Schmidlin
  • Track: Technical
  • Homebrew Con 2014
  • Grand Rapids, MI

You’ve got your beer in a keg, but how do you get it out? Learn how to design and balance your draft system for the perfect pour of your beer, cider and mead. We’ll also talk about how and why to clean the lines, finding CO2 leaks (and avoiding them …More

How Good is Your Grist?

  • Speaker: Jennifer Helber
  • Track: Technical
  • Homebrew Con 2014
  • Grand Rapids, MI

The American Society of Brewing Chemists coordinated a collaborative test with 12 breweries on a method to check the coarseness of milling with sieves. This method can also be useful to homebrewers, because a correct mill setting greatly impacts the efficiency of extracting fermentable sugars. We will discuss the method, …More

Water Chemistry and Beer pH

  • Speaker: John Palmer
  • Track: Technical
  • Homebrew Con 2014
  • Grand Rapids, MI

Join John Palmer, author of How to Brew, Water and Brewing Classic Styles, as he dives into the subject of brewing water. Topics include the effect that brewing water chemistry has on mash pH, beer pH and beer flavor. Seminar attendees will sample two beers from the same recipe that …More

Biochemistry and the Mash

  • Speaker: Larry Horwitz
  • Track: Technical
  • Homebrew Con 2013
  • Philadelphia, PA

Larry Horwitz covers carbohydrate structre, enzymes, hydrolysis and protein in this presentation.

Brewing Chemistry 101: pH and Buffering

  • Speaker: Bob Hall
  • Track: Technical
  • Homebrew Con 2013
  • Philadelphia, PA

This talk will cover basic brewing and water chemistry. Much of the chemical knowledge needed to understand how water affects brewing can often be daunting. However, words like pH, hardness, alkalinity, temporary hardness and residual alkalinity can be simplified once brewers understand the dual concepts of pH and buffers and …More

Geeking Out in the Cellar

  • Speaker: Garry Pitman
  • Track: Technical
  • Homebrew Con 2013
  • Philadelphia, PA

Have you ever wanted to track and control what is going on in the cellar while you’re away? We will discuss a couple of options available to you. We will review the simple solutions as well as how to achieve full mastery of your cellar temperature control.

Historic Water

  • Speaker: Martin Brungard
  • Track: Technical
  • Homebrew Con 2013
  • Philadelphia, PA

The range and variety of beer styles from around the world were in large part the products of the local water they were brewed with. The local water chemistry made some styles more suitable for brewing or the water enhanced beer flavor. Unfortunately, some brewers make the mistake of trying …More

Trouble Shooting Panel

  • Speakers: Gordon StrongJamil ZainasheffJohn PalmerRandy MosherRay Daniels
  • Track: Technical
  • Homebrew Con 2012
  • Bellvue, WA

Join America’s best and brightest homebrew experts as they get grilled with questions both silly and sublime related to bad beers, balky brewhouses, black bocks, bent burners, barley bugs and who knows what else. Come loaded with your own questions and enjoy learning from the experiences of others. Fun for …More

Water Panel

  • Speakers: A.J. DeLangeColin KaminskiJohn PalmerMartin Brungard
  • Track: Technical
  • Homebrew Con 2012
  • Bellvue, WA

Water: the final frontier. These are the questions of brewers everywhere. Our continuing mission: to explain this strange new world, to define best practices and new considerations, to boldly brew better than you have ever brewed before. John Palmer, co-author of the soon to be released Water – A Comprehensive …More