My voyage to now began in the Carter administration and took a hard-left off CA State Route 61 somewhere around early January 2004 with my first dip into flavorful, but probably just average, homebrew. In 2008, sticky malt syrup and the under-powered electric range gave way to sacks of grain and a fabricobbled two-tier, 10gallon, brew “sculpture”, with gas au naturel via garden hose. This OSHA approved rig is usually brewing Belgians, Pale Ales, Porters, and Stouts. I’ve been breaking pencils, and judging beers, at competitions since 2006.
I’ve been brewing on small apartment stovetops since 2012. I joined BAM in 2015 after moving to Berkeley and have made new friends and learned much with this great group of brewers. I enjoy taking biking tours of regional breweries, pub trivia nights, and brewing beer! I’ve since become a beer judge through the club’s BJCP class and urge anyone with the interest to educate themselves and become part of the community.
I have been brewing since 2015 and enjoy the process and usually enjoy the results. I have enjoyed perfecting my sanitation practices focusing on pale ales and am starting to explore the immense world of beer styles that are hard to find in the bay area such as weisbier. Getting involved with the Bay Area Mashers has been a tremendous help talking with more experienced brewers and sampling some great beers has given me motivation to keep pushing my brewing to a higher level.
I started brewing when I was in college. My older brother was taking a graduate
level chemistry class at Portland State “ Chemistry of Winemaking”. One section
of the class involved the chemical processes of making beer. I borrowed the recipe
that was the class assignment for that section and made a batch of beer to give to
friends and family for Christmas. I designed and printed labels for the bottles.
It was a pretty successful present so I started brewing on a regular basis. As can
happen with hobbies, I got very involved in the process and 40 years later I’m still brewing.
I’ve been drinking beer since I was about 10, and brewing for 4 or 5 years. I especially love Belgian beers, but I would hardly turn any beer down! I started with partial mashes on the kitchen stove using kits from Seven Bridges Organic. Actually, my first kit was from Oak Barrel, along with the brew pot and carboy. Then I bought a gas burner, kettle, and igloos from a guy on Craigslist. When Seven Bridges closed, I had to start coming up with my own recipes! My wife Marcey, who is a member and almost a BJCP judge, did not like the use of plastics, so I needed and upgrade. And rather than going to a three burner system, I got a Robobrew earlier this year. So far, so good!
I didn’t consider joining a homebrew club until I felt like I knew what I was doing. I hope other people are smarter than me and just come to a meeting anytime they want! You can learn a lot!
In 2009 I started brewing with my good friend Christine. We did one extract
batch and then moved straight to all-grain. We started out brewing in her back
yard in SF and then moved to my back yard when I moved to the East Bay. I like
IPAs, Belgians, Saisons, Weissbiers, Barleywines, Bocks, Imperial Stouts and am
working at getting into other styles all the time. I joined BAM in 2011 and
started to see how other people brew. I make 10 gallon batches in 3 gravity fed
keggles with a single propane burner. I keg into Corny kegs and fit 4 in my
Keezer. I use pool water to cool my wort with a sump pump. I’ve got about 10 hop
plants in the back yard but haven’t brewed with their harvest yet.
In 2012, my husband came to me with a presentation of all the reasons he wanted to begin homebrewing, including a book and the Alton Brown episode. To his delight, I had no objections and have fully supported the endeavor ever since! This past summer I brewed my first batch and discovered that making beer is sort of like steeping a giant tea bag twice (only a lot more finicky and temperamental). We now dream, like many of you, of opening a neighborhood brewery and third space hangout for all to enjoy!
As your social coordinator, I am aiming to learn the ebb and flow of our club’s events and gatherings, and to inspire us to get to know one another better and form lasting community. I hope to find ways to bring us together to hang out while enjoying all the beer we can! And your ideas are always welcome!
Style of the Quarter Coordinator
I have been brewing now for over a decade. After about 5 years of isolated brewing from kits, my move up to Oakland introduced me to other homebrewers through membership with BAM, and everything has improved since: full-volume boil, all mash, recipe development, water chemistry, etc. Now I am a certified BJCP beer judge and am fascinated by all the beer style categories and their respective histories. Over time I intend to brew every style, but in 2018 I’ve been focusing on Weissbier, Dark Mild, and Pilsners. As your Style of the Quarter Coordinator, I want to encourage all you in the wonders of tackling some new styles!
BJCP Training Coordinator
I started brewing in 1986 with the goal of making something as good as Sierra Nevada Pale Ale. My tastes and brewing repertoire have expanded since then, but I still ferment in 6 gallon glass carboys because I like to watch the yeast boil. I moved from the stove top to a mega BTU outdoor burner in 2008, but that’s about it for technology.
Studying for and earning my certification as a BJCP judge in 2011 has improved my beer and appreciation of it. I am happy to help others develop their tasting and brewing skills.
Executive Committee Members
The executive committee is made up of five people, some of whom are mentioned above as they hold other officer positions as well. The executive committee is
- Jon Sheehan
- Adam Bradley
- Neil Topliffe
- Star Woodward
- Bob Davis
Descriptions of Club Officer positions
Officers hold their position for a twelve month period, until a meeting to elect
new officers is held.
- Conduct regular club meetings.
- Preside over executive committee meetings, conferences or special actions.
- Present initiatives and ideas for club activities.
- Delegate club business to appropriate officers.
- Speak on behalf of the club and/or executive committee for any actions decided upon under ethical review.
Support the efforts of the President. In the absence of the President, preside
over executive committee meetings, conferences or special actions.
- Either attend all monthly member meetings or delegate a member to act as Secretary at any monthly meeting which the Secretary can not attend.
- Take notes at the monthly member meetings and share those notes with the entire membership after the monthly meeting electronically.
Social Events Coordinator
- Generate ideas for special, social or party events.
- Coordinate or delegate members to implement club activities and programs.
Typically, this includes the annual multi-club picnic in August, a few club
brewout gatherings, the December holiday party, and whatever other gatherings
outside of the regular club meetings sound good.
Technical Events Coordinator
- Generate ideas for activities and events during the general meetings once per month.
- Coordinate or delegate members to implement the normal monthly club activities and programs, including the four Style of the Quarter presentations per year.
Style of the Quarter Coordinator
- Work with Officers and Members to determine focus of each Style of the Quarter contest.
- Work with Technical Coordinator to arrange presentation related to Style of the Quarter topic.
- Coordinate communications to members regarding the contest, including relevant dates and contest details.
- Coordinate judging of Style of the Quarter entries, including pick up of entries from Oak Barrel, cataloging of entries in preparation for judging, arrangement of judges and judging time / location, tabulation of final results, and returning completed scoresheets to entering members.
- Announce Style of the Quarter winners, and coordinate with Oak Barrel to ensure gift certificates are sent appropriately.
- Keeps this website running and posts information for club members to download.
Knowledge of web design, HTML, and WordPress are good but not necessarily
crucial, as well as a desire to add new functionality to the website as needed.