September meeting notes
Thanks to both Rick Denton for hosting us at his home and to Ditmar’s Orchard for staying open for us.
Several members met first at Ditmar’s Orchard outside Council Bluffs to collect fresh-pressed cider to ferment.  In total we purchased nearly 50 gallons from apples they pressed earlier that day.  We determined the gravity to be around 1.040 with a 3.6 pH.  They are eager to have us back in the Spring to sample our fermented versions.
Stop number two was Rick’s in Council Bluffs.  Rick served truly outstanding German-style beers including his German Pale Lager, Hefeweizen and Dopplebock.  Rick prefers his Dopplebocks at the low end of the O.G. range of the style to increase drinkability.  The Hallertau hops really had a chance to shine in the Pale Lager.  Rick recommended grinding the wheat malt to powder for a great Hefeweizen.  We’ll be back Rick.  Thank your wife once again for us for her efforts with the cheese and cracker tray.
As for other homebrews, Brian brought the big brew Old Ale and a clone of Dogfish Head’s Te’j (Ethiopian mead).  Jose had a single decoction Schwarzbier (Randy Mosher recipe).  Tom shared his Tommers ESB and Duane poured a wet-hopped IPA.  The Cascade hops were all home grown in Duane’s yard and provided a great (but not over-the-top) flavor.  Chris Masek brought the world’s largest bottle (corny keg) full of an Alaskan Amber clone as well as a cider.  Jason provided Summit’s Oktoberfest which got high marks from all.  Most of us also indulged in Chris Masek’s beer-brine pickles.

August 2013 Omahops meeting recap

A big thanks goes out to Jim at Cornhusker Beverage for allowing us to invade his business for the evening.  We needed the space with one of the largest turnouts of the year.  We really appreciate your hospitality Jim!

We also appreciate all the newer faces at the meeting.  Be sure to follow us on twitter, join the OmaHops facebook group and especially the Yahoo group to keep up with the latest events.

As club business goes, the Scotch/Bock was discussed for the Fall Big Brew without objections or alternatives.  We will gladly take up Rick Denton on his offer to host the September meeting at his home on Wednesday September 18.  Wayne shared not only his excellent meads but some insight into their creation.  He suggested using Lalvin’s 71B-1122 Narbonne yeast and staggering nutrient additions when fermenting a mead.  We also discovered the key to making a really great Polish Mead variety is to find someone’s Polish sister to stomp the bees for the best honey extraction.

We had a discussion on water, with most people sharing their methods for utilizing tap water, removing chloramines or just building the mineral profile from scratch with a base of RO water.  Some use old methods that give great results while others utilize online spreadsheets for accuracy. 

On with the real reason we meet, to drink the best damn beer!  Craig brought a tasty American Pale Ale.  Wayne shared his blended mead and the now famous Polish mead which included various spices and citrus peels.  Brian provided his Spring Big Brew CAP and a Scotch Ale from two years ago.  Chris Masek passed around his Spring Big Brew Cream Ale, a Brown Ale and a Sweet Stout.  Tom brought an ESB and Chip shared what we decided would be a great Summer Pale Ale.  Chris McMahon provided a Red Ale and Jason shared his Honey Porter.  We also enjoyed a variety of commercial beers, primarily provided by Jim at Cornhusker Beverage.

We should also thank Frosttop Root Beer for their donations to the cause and letting us view the bottling line in action. 

Congratulations are in also order for our Treasurer John Fahrer on your newly announced venture with Scriptown Brewing!  We can’t wait to sample a few. 





Omahops July 2013  Meeting

Thanks to Sam Oakes for hosting our July meeting. You couldn't have ordered more perfect summer evening weather Sam. We tossed out potential Fall Big Brew ideas and discussed the progress of the new breweries in town. We had an opportunity to sample several homebrews Friday evening. We had a few Spring Big Brews to sample. Brian poured his lager version, Damian fermented his as a Kolsch and we had Sam's as well. Damian also shared his Blueberry Wheat and his Cider while Sam provided a Belgian Golden Strong and a Barleywine. Jose poured a nice roasty Porter. Tom (with his patented Hawk-Nip bottles) brought us an English IPA, Maibock and a Dopplebock.

After the homebrews we sample a variety of commercial beers. Notably Elliot's Mackeson Stout from England and Killer Penguin from closer to home.

Thanks once again to Sam for letting us invade your home, armed with beer.

Don't forget the August 21st meeting Chris has arranged for us Cornhusker Beverage. You might want to do a little shopping while you're there!  (meeting info here)

See you there.



Omahops May 2013  Meeting

Thank you President Marc for hosting our May meeting, especially for going above and beyond with the brats and other assorted munchies.  We welcomed a new homebrewer in Jason Romano and had a chance to sample his second ever batch of beer, a lemon coriander wheat.  Marc poured a young version of our spring big brew creme ale, along with an old ale, Russian imperial stout and a couple of meads.  Floyd provided a cranberry orange wheat and an american wheat, both from NBC's wort transformation competition.  Duane shared a steam beer.  Brian brought a gluten-free mocha mild ale, fall big brew old ale, and a clone of Dogfish Head's Bitches Brew (3/4 RIS, 1/4 Te'j).  We also sampled a few commercial brews before the night was over.  There was some preliminary talk of the Fall Big Brew with the only consensus leaning towards a darker style.  Next meeting is Friday June 21 at Tom Hawk's (meeting info here).  See you there.