FEBRUARY 2014  meeting notes
Meeting notes for OmaHops Homebrew Club 2-5-14
Eleven of us met at the home of our President Marc Pullum where he served some great chili just in case we weren’t thirsty already.  We discussed possible Spring Big Brew styles including Pilsner, Steam, Kolsch, Blonde Ale, English Bitter and American Pale Ale.  We also decided that we could round up at least 4 brewers to provide 5 gallons each at the Benson Beerfest in early June.  Chris Miller will brew one batch so we still need at least 3 more brewers to commit.  On with the beer!
Jose served his club cider, a commercial Weissbier and a Pecan Brown Ale from Mississippi.  Brian poured his club cider and his Coconut version of last Fall’s Big Brew Porter.  Floyd served his Kolsch and Elliott shared his Eiswheat, made from last year’s NBC contest wort and concentrated to 12% ABV.  Jason brought his American Pale Ale and Fall Big Brew Porter.  Chris McMahon shared his Porter, Kolsch, Red Ale and RIS.  Dave poured a couple commercial beers from Latvia and Poland.  Marc provided his Fall Big Brew Porter and a bottle of 2001 Sierra Nevada Celebration Ale.  Sam poured his Barleywine and Dale shared his Fall Big Brew Porter, plus a vertical tasting of J.W. Lees Harvest Ales from 1999, 1998, 1997 and 1990.  Some members were in diapers when the 1990 bottle was brewed. 
 Here's the latest update on brewers for the 12 Beers of Christmas. Let's plan on exchanging at the Fall Big Brew.
Steve Freeman- Caramel Quad and Juniper Rye Bock
Duane Miller- Spiced Cherry Dubbel
Kent Porter- Spiced Dunkel Weizenbock
Chris Miller-Fruitcake Old Ale
Sam- Saffron Tripel
Jose- Honey Ginger IPA
Brian- Gingerbread Ale
Chris Masek- Spiced Bourbon Stout
Damian- Abbey Weizen
Floyd- St. Arnold's Christmas Ale
We still need one more to make 12, we could go over. The remaining beers from 2 Mosher articles include: Christmas Gruit, Crabapple Lambicky Ale, Pumpkin Barleywine, Cocoa Export Porter, Dark White Beer.
Next month’s meeting location is still to be determined.
NOVEMBER 2013  meeting notes
Thanks to everyone for making Big Brew go so smooth, especially to Hawk for hosting and taking such great care of us. Food and beers were great and for those who tasted the wort I think you'll agree we've got a winner.
 Best line of the afternoon was from Hawks preschool son who watched me next to some of our larger size members for a while and then asked me if "I was all growed up ?" Met a potential new member "Tad" and enjoyed talking with the journalism student from UNO, Sydney, who came out to play with us.   Dale: Thanks for the pumpkin bread, I took a slice home for my son who is into everything pumpkin.  Brian: Extra points for the fire pit. With the sun out and little wind until sunset that really helped it be pretty comfortable on the driveway.  Just amazing how everyone jumps in and does something from Floyd filling the boiler to Damian, Joel and Duane  cleaning  it . Those of you who couldn't stay to the end missed one of the last Tommyclaus bottles( lets do that next year- 120 lbs of extract should do it plus the usual mash. :-)  and a whole bunch of fun yelling at the TV and screaming "YES". At 18 months Dimitri's is just coming into it's prime and I  have a 1/2 keg of it! Let it snow, let it snow, let it snow. - Marc Pullum, President.
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.
OCTOBER meeting notes
Our October 23rd meeting took place at Infusion Brewery in Benson.  Aaron was kind enough to host our tour.  We discovered the history of the building and saw up close all the work Bill and Aaron put into it, with a little help from Elliot and Dave.  The place looks great guys! 
Aaron has definitely taken the homebrewing approach to the commercial level.  His troubleshooting skills helped him figure things out on the fly.  We certainly appreciate all the extra time he took to discuss recipes, yeast propagation, temperature control, innovative ways to reach a desired gravity, technical processes and new beers in the works.  Thanks to all the great people involved with one of Omaha's newest breweries.  
Our next gathering will be grain distribution for the Fall Big Brew at Marc's.  The Big Brew is scheduled for Tom Hawk's on Saturday November 23.