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 with Induction

  • Speaker: Joshua Weikert
  • Track: Brewing Process
  • Homebrew Con 2013
  • Philadelphia, PA

Few brewers use electric heat to boil—and frequently transition to propane when the opportunity arises —and many are missing out on the benefits of electric induction elements, either as a primary or secondary source of boil heat. Induction is cost-effective, efficient and safer than traditional electric elements or propane/LNG jet …More

Building a Walk-In Cooler

  • Speaker: Will Minderhout
  • Track: Other/Misc.
  • Homebrew Con 2013
  • Philadelphia, PA

Build your own walk-in cooler and do it on the cheap. This talk will outline how I built a 10’x4’x6′ space for approximately $150, via Craigslist and eBay. While it won’t be easy to repeat this cost, it can be done. Styrofoam makes up the majority of the supplies needed …More

Cider Revolution: How to Brew Great Cider from Everyday Ingredients

  • Speaker: Chris Banker
  • Track: Alternative Fermentation
  • Homebrew Con 2013
  • Philadelphia, PA

We are in the midst of a revolution in cidermaking and many homebrewers are still not aware how easy it can be to make outstanding ciders with inexpensive, easy to acquire ingredients. This talk will discuss proven methods for making excellent fruit and specialty ciders from commonly available ingredients, using …More

Colonial Brewing Practices and Beers with Historical British Influences

  • Speaker: Bob Grossman
  • Track: Historical
  • Homebrew Con 2013
  • Philadelphia, PA

The freedom-seeking settlers were influenced by their dependency on fermented beverages, a necessary alternative to the tainted water supplies in England. They brought with them a great appreciation for alcoholic beverages, a perspective derived from a long brewing tradition founded in folk wisdom, herbal pharmacopoeia and lore, political leadership and …More

Come One, Come All—Wait a Minute: Assessing the Elastic Limits of Opportunity

  • Speaker: Dick Cantwell
  • Track: Going Pro
  • Homebrew Con 2013
  • Philadelphia, PA

These days it seems a new brewery is opening every day. Well, actually, that’s true—a new brewery is opening pretty much every day, and sometimes more than one. With this proliferation of new breweries attempting to sell their beer in an already crowded market, questions are being asked in all …More

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

Fermenting on the Flip Side: Alternative Fermentations & Practices

  • Speaker: Mary Izett
  • Track: Yeast & Fermentation
  • Homebrew Con 2013
  • Philadelphia, PA

Not everyone has the time or space for traditional homebrewing techniques, at least not all of the time. And even if you do, perhaps you’re seeking something new and different to brew. This seminar will include practices that can cut down on the time and space required to brew. We’ll …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.

Gluten-Free Brewing

  • Speaker: Bob Hansen
  • Track: Recipe Formulation & Improvement
  • Homebrew Con 2013
  • Philadelphia, PA

Celiac disease affects roughly one percent of the U.S. population. Many of us know people who have this disease and are denied the basic joys of barley and wheat-based foods, including beer. Commercial constraints can hinder good gluten free beer being brought to market. The U.S. beer industry is again …More

Going Pro Panel

  • Speakers: Chris White & Jamil ZainasheffDick CantwellPete VelezRich Ellis
  • Track: Going Pro
  • Homebrew Con 2013
  • Philadelphia, PA

Dick Cantwell is joined by professionals from multiple corners of the brewing world in this seminar focused on enlightening those homebrewers interested in turning their hobby into a career. Industry experts will be on hand to provide insights covering topics from sourcing ingredients and formulating hop contracts to acquiring equipment …More

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

Hop Growing 101: An Introduction for Everyone, Including Non-Gardeners

  • Speaker: Andrei Henry
  • Track: Ingredients
  • Homebrew Con 2013
  • Philadelphia, PA

The goal of this seminar is to demystify hop growing and give participants the knowledge and confidence to grow their own. While there is a lot of information online about growing hops, it is scattered. The seminar will offer one-stop-shopping for anyone contemplating growing hops. This talk is suitable for …More

Hops vs. Malt: A Smackdown with Cheese

  • Speaker: Janet Fletcher
  • Track: Ingredients
  • Homebrew Con 2013
  • Philadelphia, PA

Two brews go mano a mano in this tasting, competing for your vote. In the ring: a hoppy ale and a malt-focused brew. On the plate: five artisan cheeses. Guided by Cheese & Beer author Janet Fletcher, you’ll learn to identify the cheese styles that respond better to hoppy beers …More

How to Improve Club Events and Empower Leaders

  • Speaker: Bruce Buerger
  • Track: Clubs & Competitions
  • Homebrew Con 2013
  • Philadelphia, PA

There is a lot of good homebrewing talent out there, but more often than not, those organizing events have difficulty tapping into it. This session aims to empower club leaders, elected or otherwise, with tools to make their events successful. We’ll talk about classic pitfalls, the fear of failing in …More

It’s Not Done ’til it’s Done: Post-Fermentation Mead Tweaks

  • Speakers: Curt StockGordon Strong
  • Track: Alternative Fermentation
  • Homebrew Con 2013
  • Philadelphia, PA

Mead fermentation can be unpredictable, especially with unusual ingredients. At the end of primary fermentation you may be left with a problematic beverage. Learn techniques you can employ to deal with those issues and transform a lifeless mead into something enjoyable.

Keynote

  • Speaker: Tom Peters
  • Track: Other/Misc.
  • Homebrew Con 2013
  • Philadelphia, PA

2013 National Homebrewers Conference keynote

Mastering Mead

  • Speaker: Michael Fairbrother
  • Track: Alternative Fermentation
  • Homebrew Con 2013
  • Philadelphia, PA

An engaging discussion on mastering the mead making process, from the perspective of a homebrewer gone professional. Learn how Michael Fairbrother formulates new recipes and refines the basic elements, and what’s involved to make great mead time and time again. This presentation will include a sampling of several of meads …More

Mead and Chocolate: Experience Excellence

  • Speaker: Berniece Van Der Berg
  • Track: Alternative Fermentation
  • Homebrew Con 2013
  • Philadelphia, PA

Join Berniece Van Der Berg of Moonlight Meadery for an overview of mead and chocolate pairings—samples included. Learn about taste perception, flavor hooks, and why mead works so well with a wide range of chocolates.

Methods of Creating and Maintaining a Wild House Culture

  • Speaker: Kyle Kohlmorgen
  • Track: Yeast & Fermentation
  • Homebrew Con 2013
  • Philadelphia, PA

This presentation aims to help homebrewers create unique, complex and enjoyable beers using a house culture—a cocktail of non-traditional yeasts and bacteria from any number of sources. Several methods of creating and maintaining house cultures will be discussed and compared, each of which has been developed to make brewing with …More

Practical Malting

  • Speakers: Andrea StanleyChristian Stanley
  • Track: Ingredients
  • Homebrew Con 2013
  • Philadelphia, PA

Craft malting is emerging as an industry that directly supports craft brewers and homebrewers. Andrea and Christian Stanley from Valley Malt discuss what motivated them to start a malt house in Massachusetts and share their equipment and process. Many homebrewers possess an inherent DIY attitude toward their craft. Andrea will …More

Process Improvement and Beer Enhancement: The Nano Experience

  • Speaker: Andy Tveekrem
  • Track: Recipe Formulation & Improvement
  • Homebrew Con 2013
  • Philadelphia, PA

This seminar will address several topics of interest for advanced homebrewers, nano brewers and those pondering going pro at the nanobrewery level. In August 2012, the partners who own and operate Market Garden Brewery in Cleveland opened a new concept called Nano Brew Cleveland—a 24 tap beer bar and brewpub …More

Serving With Style

  • Speaker: Mike Lindel
  • Track: Recipe Formulation & Improvement
  • Homebrew Con 2013
  • Philadelphia, PA

The time has come. You have been honing your brewing craft, reading Palmer, Noonan and Zainasheff. You have tweaked your brews, entered the competitions to get guidance and pored through the forums. After brewing your best stuff, controlling your fermentation, lagering and aging, you are about to serve your pride …More

Stand on Your Two Brewing Feet

  • Speaker: George Hummel
  • Track: Going Pro
  • Homebrew Con 2013
  • Philadelphia, PA

Join George Hummel, author of The Complete Homebrew Beer Book and Mid-Atlantic Brewing News’ homebrew columnist, as he illustrates taking the next steps from beginner brewing. Drawing on almost 30 years of brewing experience, he’ll show how to extract the most flavors from malt extract-based beers. Leveraging the vast array …More

Step Up Your Starters: Insight into Yeast Propagation for Homebrewers

  • Speaker: Kai Troester
  • Track: Yeast & Fermentation
  • Homebrew Con 2013
  • Philadelphia, PA

This presentation, intended for advanced homebrewers, will not be your ordinary talk about making yeast starters and how they can improve your beer. Drawing on research in yeast growth and fermentation performance , this seminar will provide insight into how yeast grows and what affects yeast growth and health in …More

Stepping Up Your Sensory Game: How to Be a Better Taster

  • Speaker: Kara Taylor
  • Track: Sensory Analysis
  • Homebrew Con 2013
  • Philadelphia, PA

The necessity of being able to accurately describe your beer, whether you’re a judge or simply an aficionado, cannot be overstated. As the community continues to grow exponentially, homebrewing competitions are popping up around the globe, requiring more and more qualified judges. We will discuss topics including the identification of …More

The Science of Beer Flavor

  • Speaker: Roger Barth
  • Track: Sensory Analysis
  • Homebrew Con 2013
  • Philadelphia, PA

Join West Chester University Chemistry professor Dr. Roger Barth as he discusses the science behind what you taste when having your favorite brew. In this presentation, Roger breaks down what the anatomy of flavor really is, from taste and aroma to the mouthfeel and flavor threshold of your beer. Go …More

Waste Not, Want Not: Sustainable and Frugal Homebrewing

  • Speaker: Dan Schreffler
  • Track: Other/Misc.
  • Homebrew Con 2013
  • Philadelphia, PA

The intent of this seminar is to show varying sustainable brewing concepts for water use, chilling, heating and energy recovery, ingredient sourcing and waste disposal. The pros do this to maximize profits; homebrewers can do it to have more money to buy ingredients and beer, and lessen impact on the …More

Yeast Culturing 101

  • Speaker: Shawn McBride
  • Track: Yeast & Fermentation
  • Homebrew Con 2013
  • Philadelphia, PA

A brief history of yeast and yeast culturing will be presented, as well as a host of information detailing how the average homebrewer can accomplish this task at home using a few different methods. Topics covered include making slants, starters, washing and growing yeast to pitchable rates. Methods for storage …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.

AHA Members Meeting

  • Speaker: AHA Staff and Members
  • Track: Beer Styles
  • Homebrew Con 2012
  • Bellvue, WA