Posts Tagged ‘Capitol Brewers’

Welcome to ’10

Wednesday, January 6th, 2010

I wish this was a review of Widmer’s ’10, then I could rant about this stupid black IPA fad. Sadly this is one of those obligatory New Years posts, and it’s threefold

’09 in review

Last year I was approached by Paul about writing for him, and started blogging about beer. Prior to all this beer was a much smaller part of my life. Once I started writing though it required I learn something. I delved into books on beer and brewing, especially history. The more I’ve learned about beer though the more it has changed my view of beer. This year saw the change from beer cheerleader to a more narrow view of Oregon’s beer scene. This last year I also joined Capitol Brewers (Salem’s homebrewing club) and was able to network more then ever before with not only Salem’s homebrewers, but also with Willamette Valley brewers who are located outside of the Portland area.

Looking Ahead

I’ve been asked many times by Dr Wort about what I want this blog to become. The problem is I’ve wanted my readers to participate in that. I’d love if you guys would contribute and make this blog yours. Ask questions, send me articles, send in pictures. You guys see things and hear things I don’t. To help encourage this I’m going to push the ads for schwag a bit harder. Try to get breweries and pubs to give away stuff via this blog. Speaking of that I need to get to the pub more. I’ve always been a bottled beer guy. I prefer drinking at home with a few close friends or family. Also bottled beer gets aged the way I want. Still pub culture is something to be enjoyed, not avoided. I need to remember that.

My other goal is to take the all grain plunge. I’ve never had the space or equipment to do all grain, but in order to take my beer to the next level I have to start tweaking grains more. I’ve experimented with herbs probably to the greatest extant I can. Sure there are more beer styles to explore with, and more herbs to try, but there wont be vast improvements to be gained in that department anymore.

A Great Brewers Dinner

Sunday, October 18th, 2009

from theweeklybrew

Sadly I couldn’t make the Fort George Brewers Dinner at Venti’s, but I’ll see if I can get a review of it from Conrad (who helped out) or Jack (who hopefully got to go).

Instead I went to the Capitol Brewers “Brewers Dinner” where we honor the clubs best homebrewers and invite the local brewers to enjoy a meal with us. It ended up being a great night despite the foreboding weather. When I pulled up to Annette’s the sky had turned dark with clouds and the wind had picked up. But it’s Oregon, and rain is a fact of life. At least we were indoors and the rain decided not to pour like it did during that mornings schoolyard football game. Anyway the beer was awesome, and that’s the point of this post.

In total there were 6 or 7 kegs I believe, not to mention the sheer variety of bottles. There were several bottles of cider, Dick Blankenship brought his peach lambic that won him AHA Homebrewer of the Year this year (most amazing peach lambic I’ve had… Heck my favorite lambic yet for that matter), not to mention a keg or two and even an 8 year old Old Ale that we cracked open. Josh brought a keg of his stout, someone brought a blond, and I think there were two IPA’s and a pilsner as well. Jesse brought his chocolate stout, and these are just the beers I tried. There were many more that were probably note worthy though.

The professionals that showed up were Dennis (Brewer at Pale Horse) with a case or two of his new IPA Hop Dog. Jeff from Seven Brides and Hops2You was there. Also Mike from RAM brought several growlers including ZZHop and their oktoberfest, and Jen from Thompsons brought the winter warmer “Wookie” that she brewed with Scott, who also was a runner up for best homebrewer in the club award thing. The beer was enough to last several days, but everyone helped attempt to finish it all. Also another note is that there were a garbage bag each of tettenanger and perle hops for anyone to take what they wanted. Nothing better then hops, good beer, and some great conversations about beer.

Overall it was an awesome dinner and it showed that even if Salems brewers aren’t considered the worlds best that they are generous and love a good time.

Salem Beer Festival No More?

Monday, August 3rd, 2009

from theweeklybrew

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I was hoping to have a definitive answer on the status of the Mission Mill Beer Festival back in July, but due to a computer issue not all the club members received emails about the meeting. This Saturday however was the August meeting for Capitol Brewers, and the status of the festival is unknown. It does seem however that Capitol Brewers is no longer involved in planning it. For the original post about it click here.

Everyone knew that May was short notice for planning a full festival, but there was hope it could get off the ground anyway. I haven’t heard any news about whether or not they’ll aim for next year. I really hope though that this festival is delayed and not dead in the water. I think Salem is ready for a real beer festival (sorry McMenamins, Barley Cup doesn’t count). I will try to gather some more info and let you guys know the status of this idea.

Capitol Brewers

Monday, May 4th, 2009

capitol_kh_725061Saturday night I went to my first meeting of the Capitol Brewers, and I wish I had had a camera with me. Capitol Brewers is a homebrew club in Salem. So why would I want a camera? Were the people there so attractive that I’d like to take a picture? Well here’s some perspective on why I needed a camera.

For awhile I’d been flirting with the idea of attending a meeting and had finally broke down and got the address from Doug Faynor at Homebrew Heaven. Doug had told me the meetings are potluck style, and people usually bring some beer also, but not to worry since I wasn’t a member and was just checking it out. I thought I’d be cool though and bring my new CPB stout for people to try… See what I did wrong there? I thought I’d be cool…. Anyway I showed up with a sixer and was told the meeting was downstairs and that the beer went around the corner. Well once I got around the corner my jaw dropped.

Capitol Brewers were the ones who put on the Homebrew Classic at the Oregon Gardens Brew Fest. They did the prizes, handled the bottles and storage, did the administrative work for it, and provided several judges for the event. As they were the ones in charge of storing the bottles before the competition they were also in charge of storing the leftover full bottles afterwords. So when I walked around that corner with my measly sixer there were like 7 or 8 good size coolers full to the tops with beer. So much for bringing beer for people to try eh? Not only did they have the coolers though, but when I turned around I noticed a bar at the opposite end every square inch taken up with beer bottles.

Now tell me, is there a greater form of nirvana for a beer lover then entering a room full of homebrew, in like 26 different categories and like 150 styles mind you, and being told to feel free to sample and drink all you’d like? I mean it was like being a kid in a candy shop. I just read and reread the category list trying to decide what style I wanted first. After I’d decided I bounced around and sampled three different styles, only filling my glass full once (with my own Bombay CPB). Then there was the meeting, bla bla bla, and then more beer!

So what was the general impression of the club, other then they had alot of beer at that meeting? The club didn’t seem very organized or structured. In fact it mostly just seemed like a hangout for brewers. This could be because with all the samples people kept drifting out of the room for more beer though. I had a good time discussing brewing, and relearned an important thing about brewing. You’ll never find someone who knows everything, and even then, just cause it works for them doesn’t make it right for you. In fact I couldn’t find anyone with experience in the kind of funky beers I like to brew. The people were knowledgeable and friendly though, and I had alot of fun sharing a few beers with them. At $24 dollars a year in dues I may just end up joining for the camaraderie.

Since I forgot my camera, please enjoy this video of beer bottle dominoes

Oh yeah,

In case my mother or someone reads this post I did stay sober. After all I was on a bike, and drinking too much would have been bad news with only two wheels to balance.