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!

7 Hops: Bitter Sisters Who Reveal the Secrets of Humulus lupulus

  • Speaker: Stan Hieronymus
  • Track: Ingredients
  • Homebrew Con 2019
  • Providence, RI

How should you use a hop you’ve never heard of? Why are New World hops different? What’s a thiol? How come nobody warned us about hop creep? We’ll consider these questions, talk about the latest scientific research, and vote for the most important hop ever after getting up close and …More

Ask the Experts Panel

  • Speakers: Brad SmithDrew BeechumJohn Palmer
  • Track: Other/Misc.
  • Homebrew Con 2019
  • Providence, RI

No homebrewing topic is off limits in this interactive Q&A panel with homebrewing luminaries Brad Smith, John Palmer, and Drew Beechum. Lamenting on lagers? Interested in isinglass? Curious about carbonation? Puzzled about Pediococcus? Overanalyzing alpha acids? Bring your toughest homebrewing riddles and see what advice these experts can give.

Automated Brewing and Electrical Safety for Homebrewers

  • Speaker: Peter Bruno & Geoff Parkins
  • Track: Do-It-Yourself
  • Homebrew Con 2019
  • Providence, RI

Many DIY brewers are learning about microcontrollers, advanced temperature control, flow measurement and control, volume sensing, and dissolved oxygen measurement to improve quality and ensure consistency from batch to batch. We will discuss the capabilities and advantages of automation, from simple temperature control to fully automated breweries. The second half …More

Beer School: Homebrew Tips from Brewing College and Pro Brewer Experience

  • Speaker: James Czar
  • Track: Brewing Process
  • Homebrew Con 2019
  • Providence, RI

In his two-year journey to a brewing science degree, and in his time as a professional brewer, James has had many “Aha!” moments—times when he realized that a specific technique or bit of knowledge could help his homebrew. Join James as he shares (often humorous) stories from school and work, …More

Better Bochet

  • Speaker: John WIlson & Brian Wolf
  • Track: Alternative Fermentation
  • Homebrew Con 2019
  • Providence, RI

The deep copper color, vanilla aroma, and notes of caramel and burnt marshmallow of bochet have long been of interest to us. But, all too often, a bochet passed to us at a club meeting or sampled at Club Night managed to disappoint. The bochets we tasted lacked body, were …More

Brewing Beer-Style Meads

  • Speaker: Sergio Moutela
  • Track: Alternative Fermentation
  • Homebrew Con 2019
  • Providence, RI

Making beer-style mead involves more than just adding hops. This presentation covers everything that goes into making recipes that truly walk the fine line between these two amazing craft beverages.

Brewing Simple: Great Beer with Less Effort and More Fun

  • Speaker: Drew Beechum & Denny Conn
  • Track: Brewing Process
  • Homebrew Con 2019
  • Providence, RI

Why do homebrewers seem to want to do things in the most difficult way possible? Why measure your beer’s value in terms of sweat instead of savor? Learn how simplifying your brewing process can give you great beer in less time while you have the most fun with your brew. …More

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

Brewing with Fruit

  • Speaker: Bret Kollman Baker
  • Track: Ingredients
  • Homebrew Con 2019
  • Providence, RI

Get the most out of your fruit beers. Bret Kollmann Baker, head brewer at Urban Artifact, covers a wide range of techniques and options for maximizing fruit usage in your beers. We’ll discuss fermentation and brewhouse fruit usage rates, the impacts of different fruit types (whole, fresh, frozen, puree, concentrate, …More

Brewing with Oats

  • Speaker: Sachin "Chino" Darji
  • Track: Ingredients
  • Homebrew Con 2019
  • Providence, RI

What if there were a secret ingredient that could take your beer from good to remarkable? What if this secret could help you make something beery, delicious, and totally unique? The humble oat has been a traditional brewing grain since before recorded beer history. Let’s unlock the secrets of the …More

Brewing without Hops: Back to the Future of Botanical Brewing

  • Speaker: George "Butch" Heilshorn
  • Track: Ingredients
  • Homebrew Con 2019
  • Providence, RI

Folks from around the world have brewed beer for thousands of years, and for most of that time, they didn’t use hops! Join brewer, brewpub owner, and author of Against All Hops Butch Heilshorn for a jaunt down the wonderful wormhole of botanical brewing. Learn its rich history, discover what …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

Building Your Own Brew Stand from A to Z

  • Speaker: Brian Haslip
  • Track: Do-It-Yourself
  • Homebrew Con 2019
  • Providence, RI

This seminar will provide homebrewers with many different options for building brew stands. From choosing and planning the system and selecting materials to putting it all together, you’ll learn how to avoid potential pitfalls along the way. Whether you are building a multi-tier gravity system, a brew-in-a-bag system, a single-tier …More

Deep Diving into Yeast Starters

  • Speaker: Kara Taylor
  • Track: Yeast & Fermentation
  • Homebrew Con 2019
  • Providence, RI

Debating whether to make a starter can be confusing. Do I really need to make one? How is it different than just adding more yeast? In this talk we’ll explore what making a starter can do and dive into some data behind different types of starters. We’ll look at cell …More

DIY Advanced Technology for Cheapskate and Anarchistic Homebrewers

  • Speaker: Pierre Margraff & Andrew Tipler
  • Track: Do-It-Yourself
  • Homebrew Con 2019
  • Providence, RI

In this presentation, homebrewers will learn to develop and apply novel technologies to solve common homebrew problems. All these useful projects work well and are inexpensive and practical to build at home. Learn about fun DIY projects like a temperature monitor and controller, pressure monitor, fermentation and keg weight monitor, …More

Draft Beer Dispensing for Homebrewers

  • Speaker: Joe Linquist
  • Track: Other/Misc.
  • Homebrew Con 2019
  • Providence, RI

Tired of seeing delicious beer—the product of several weeks and lots of love—mutilated by your draft beer dispensing system? It takes only seconds for a beer traveling from keg to faucet to leave a bad taste in your mouth if your dispensing system isn’t properly designed, assembled, and maintained. In …More

Educational Seminars and Guest Speakers for Your Homebrew Club

  • Speaker: Mike Todd
  • Track: Clubs & Competitions
  • Homebrew Con 2019
  • Providence, RI

Effectively coordinate educational topics and speakers for your homebrew club to promote continued learning, active membership, and club longevity. Homebrew clubs that encourage members to remain up to date and informed are much more successful than so-called “drinking clubs.” This seminar will help you start a regular educational segment at …More

Everyone’s Second Favorite Liquid: Basic Water Comprehension for Homebrewing

  • Speaker: John LaPolla
  • Track: Ingredients
  • Homebrew Con 2019
  • Providence, RI

Brewing water can be an intimidating topic for homebrewers. In this talk, we will cover the water basics every brewer should know and learn how to improve your beer through water treatment. This session will be light on chemistry and big on practical advice.

Ferment THAT!

  • Speaker: Lorena Evans & Melinda Spalding
  • Track: Alternative Fermentation
  • Homebrew Con 2019
  • Providence, RI

Fermented foods have a long history and are currently a hot commodity. This seminar will build on some of the basics of fermentation and types of microbes involved in fermented foods like kimchi, kombucha, vinegar, sausage, sauerkraut, hot sauces, cheese, and many more! In this sequel to Ferment THIS from …More

Flavor Impacts of Brett Fermentation under Pressure

  • Speaker: Jonah Greenbaum-Shinder & Chris Saunders
  • Track: Yeast & Fermentation
  • Homebrew Con 2019
  • Providence, RI

It is a popular belief that fermenting with Brettanomyces under pressure yields a funkier outcome. At Escarpment Labs, we decided to put it to the test by fermenting the same co-pitched wort with and without top pressure. The finished product was then evaluated in a sensory panel and tested using …More

Gluten-Free Brewing: Choosing the Best Grains for Taste, Texture, and Color

  • Speaker: Robert Keifer
  • Track: Ingredients
  • Homebrew Con 2019
  • Providence, RI

Robert Keifer has been gluten-free since 2010 and became tired of never having any beer to drink. After discovering gluten-free beer, he immersed himself in learning everything there is to know about brewing. He aspires to put his beers on the map at the Great American Beer Festival® Pro-Am Competition …More

Hexes, Hops, and Herstory: A Call to Action

  • Speaker: Shannon Heneghan Jutras
  • Track: Historical
  • Homebrew Con 2019
  • Providence, RI

“Hexes, Hops, and Herstory” is a brewing project and a call to action! Inspired by history, this movement engages women beer lovers to become beer brewers in the modern day. Learn more about the history of women in beer and their association with the iconography of witches, as well as …More

Homebrewing Microcomputers and Microbrewing Homebrew: Smithsonian Research on Homebrewing and Craft Beer History

  • Speaker: Theresa McCulla
  • Track: Historical
  • Homebrew Con 2019
  • Providence, RI

This session will provide an introduction to the research and collecting work of the American Brewing History Initiative at the Smithsonian’s National Museum of American History. The initiative, which is supported by the Brewers Association, is building a new archive of the histories of American homebrewing and craft beer. Curator …More

How to Facilitate a Club Barrel-Aging Program and Produce Quality Beer

  • Speakers: Aaron De Boer & Matt JohnsonTyler Bye
  • Track: Clubs & Competitions
  • Homebrew Con 2019
  • Providence, RI

The Nordeast Brewers Alliance has been running a barrel-aging program since 2012. Our French oak barrel project was featured on Chop & Brew episode 7, “Roll Out the Barrels.” In this presentation, we will outline ways to facilitate a club barrel program and produce a successful experience for the club …More

How to Survive Your Local Homebrew Competition

  • Speakers: Evan ComeauxJoshua Fogg & Steve GravelMatthew Dirckx
  • Track: Clubs & Competitions
  • Homebrew Con 2019
  • Providence, RI

Want to host a homebrew competition? Ever coordinated a competition before? If so, then you know how fortunate you are to be alive right now. Join our team of battle-hardened competition coordinators for tactical insights on how to survive and conquer your competition. You will hear our war stories, learn …More

Imperial Stout: 300 Years in the Making

  • Speaker: Toby Johnson & Casey Welsch
  • Track: Historical
  • Homebrew Con 2019
  • Providence, RI

Beginning with the development of porter in the early 1700s, imperial stout has gone through many transformations over the last 300 years. Come join our dynamic duo of time-traveling homebrewer historians as we explore the evolution, near death, and rebirth of one of the strongest beers out there!

Improving the Quality of Your Sour Beer through Blending

  • Speaker: Chris Rabeau
  • Track: Brewing Process
  • Homebrew Con 2019
  • Providence, RI

Rarely is one carboy free of off flavors while also expressing the right balance of acidity and funk. Blending is one way to make consistently good sour beer most of the time. Brewers will learn how to blend to achieve a better, more consistent flavor in their beers.

In Search of the Haze: Adjuncts, Malts & Hazy IPAs

  • Speaker: Don Moore
  • Track: Ingredients
  • Homebrew Con 2019
  • Providence, RI

Malt is the soul of beer, crafted by transforming barley into packages of starch that enzymes can convert to yeast-fermentable sugars. While new varieties of barley are formulated, tested, and approved every year, malting companies continue to innovate beyond that by developing new techniques for extracting unique flavor profiles that …More