March Meeting

By Mark Bilbrough, Club President

Basking in the afterglow? Resting on our laurels? Buggered after pulling together another National Multicultural Festival? Call it what you will but the March meeting was a suitably low-fi event.

We had a good turnout, with a heap of new brewers coming along to what was a largely social gathering. The bring-a-bottle themed event saw us return to a classic kegless meeting where we get to taste each others beer and focus on the craft.

Then we had the kegs, so the fun continued on.

Folks who had helped out at the Multicultural Festival got to take home a bottle of the leftovers from Byron Bay (Pilsner) and Mountain Goat (Steam Ale). It also gave me a great chance to practice using my PET counter-pressure filler which I thought was cool, until I saw how easy it is to fill bottles with the new Ultimate Carbonation Cap available from Mashematics/Keg King.

Neal Cameron from the Australian Brewery had also popped into the meeting – sharing his view on how much better craft beer is in cans. Rather than give an impromptu presentation, he made himself available throughout the night to questions form the homebrewers on his beer, cans and cider (Neal was in Canberra for Plonk’s ciderganza).

Richard Watkins was interrogated about when Bent Spoke was due to open (but his resistance is stronger than our need for information).

Welcome to all of our new members, and I think we are all looking forward to returning to normal come April.

Posted in Editor's Report

Multicultural Festival 2014

By Kevin Hingston, Social Secretary

There’s a reason the Multicultural Festival is held in February. If it weren’t, we couldn’t spend the remaining ten months of the year reminiscing on how hot, tired, and sweaty we got keeping the punters happy in the name of craft-beer and fundraising for our club.

This year certainly seemed the hottest and most crowded festival yet. At first I was a little confused as to why we had so many volunteers to run kegs through the intense crowd in 38 degree heat, but on my first visit to the Wig and Pen cool room I realised what all the fuss was about.

Kegs in the coolroom

Kegs in the coolroom

2014 brought about a change in the most fundamental element of our enterprise: the beer itself. This year we diversified our line-up across four breweries and our punters absolutely loved the range:
  • Wig and Pen Malty Cultural
  • Mountain Goat Steam
  • Byron Bay Brewing Wicked Wit
  • Byron Bay Brewing Pilsner
  • Dr Pilkington’s Miracle Cider

The concept of the Malty Cultural has become a legendary aspect of the festival. I had interstate punters explaining to me that they make the festival pilgrimage every year and that our stand is a ‘must see’ stop – all thanks to the great concept beer. It was no surprise (though a little disappointing to many) that the Malty sold out on Saturday night.

The Malty wasn’t the only hit of the festival. Canberra Brewer turned pro Scotty Hargrave’s Wicked Wit was a huge hit in the heat. The cloudiness and spiciness did cause some punters to make a double take, but a simple ‘it’s like a hoegaardenen, but better’ covered their concerns off nicely. Again, this beer sold out quick smart by the time the sun was setting on Saturday.

In years past, the preliminary work to make our stall a reality has been largely run off the dedicated backs of David Gilks and Tom Dixon.

This year, a team of over ten dedicated members worked hard to cross all the t’s and dot the i’s leading up to the event, reducing stress levels across the board. The punters probably don’t realise all the logistics that go into the bar, the beer, the cash, the clothes, the food, the fun, and everything else that keeps them lining up outside our stall. That invisibility speaks volumes about the hard work that the organising committee undertook.

That dedicated committee, combined with the 40+ volunteers who kept the stall running throughout the weekend should pat themselves on the back.

We’re still counting the coin, but by all accounts it seems like we had another strong year of fundraising for the club. More importantly, we got rid of almost all of the fourty thousand Canberra Brewers cup wraps. I myself woke up with five of them strewn around my house on the Sunday morning.

These last remnants of the ancient Canberra Brewers tradition will be raffled off at the March meeting. I, for one, hope Dicko wins.

More photos available on Flickr.

The Canberra Brewers Stall

The Canberra Brewers Stall

Posted in Editor's Report

February Meeting – first for 2014

Beer and Recipe

Lawfo’s Mild and recipe sheet

The first Canberra Brewers meeting of 2014 was held on Thursday February 6 with many new members signing up on the night joining one of Australia’s biggest and more successful brewing clubs.

The committee quickly got business over with (well, as quick as they can with Club President Mark “Billy” Bilbrough at the helm) and launched straight into the all-important briefs for the upcoming Multicultural Festival.

With the briefs over and everyone knowing exactly what to expect on the clubs biggest weekend of the year, Stephen “Lawfo” Lawford took the chance to get up and talk about his English Mild providing a keg for sampling and lots of tips for brewers wanting to make one themselves.

In a scene reminiscent of Thor and his hammer, a few brewers were seen proudly brandishing their brand new shiny stainless steel mash paddles in the air – ok, perhaps it was only me…

With most of the formalities over for the night, club members took the chance to catch up with mates and talk about their holiday brewing adventures while also getting to know the new members for the night.

A great start to the year with some great prizes going to committee members and a few other members of the club.

Until next month!

Raffles

Members enjoying the raffles

More photos can be viewed on Flickr.

Posted in Editor's Report

Final meeting for 2013 and AGM

By The Committee

CB LogoThe final Canberra Brewers meeting for 2013 was also the AGM and saw a relatively small contingent of members come together to have their say in the future of the club and the 2014 committee.

Well fed (thanks to Tom Dixon’s delicious salami from the Wig and Pen Brew Day) and well lubricated (thanks to three different kegs of Barely Barley and Joel Baines’ tasty Hefeweizen) we quickly got to work with the all-important end of year formalities:

  • Tom ‘Dicko’ Dixon took out the Craig Robinson Trophy for Clubman of the Year. Whether making sausages, making beer, or making money, Dicko’s efforts on behalf of the club, both in the president’s chair and since, made him an excellent candidate. Well done Dicko!

    Honourable mentions went to Rohan Lilley and Kevin Hingston for their above and beyond efforts over the past two years.

  • The Wig and Pen trophy was selected from the #1 entries in the ACTABC, with Steve Hogarth’s Framboise taking out pole position. Expect to see Steve’s beer on tap at the wig soon.
  • The 2014 committee remains mostly unchanged with Mark ‘Billy’ Bilbrough staying on as president, Kevin Hingston remaining on as social secretary, Chris ‘Duffy’ Duffbowl reprising his education officer role, Pete Daffern sticking around as webmaster and Nick Wiseman taking on editor responsibilities for another year.

    We welcome Joel ‘Bainesy’ Baines as treasurer, Steve ‘Lawfo’ Lawford as Competition Secretary, and Jeremy Michael into the new role of Assistant Social Secretary. Thanks for to Adam Langan and Malcolm Scholes for their efforts in 2013.

A final word from the incoming committee:

So as we wrap up 2013, 2014 is already shaping up to be a massive year.

Along with ANHC Four, we have the multicultural festival early in the new year (so please continue to frequent the forums for when we put the call out to volunteers). A refresh of competitions, education, social events, and venue are all front of mind for the committee.

So have a safe and happy Christmas break, brew strong and see you in the new year.

Cheers,
2014 Committee

 

Posted in Editor's Report

Support Movember – shave a Duffbowl!

By Nick Wiseman, Editor

Chris "Duffbowl" Duffy

Chris “Duffbowl” Duffy

Attention members of the Canberra Brewers.

Duffbowl is about to undertake Movember as part of the Team Canberra Brewers (http://au.movember.com/team/1059261)

“Hang on, he’s already facially hirsute”, I hear you say! Well, this is a bit of a difference. Duffbowl will be shaving off his whiskers to start Movember, then growing back the upper lip only.

To help raise more funds, Duffbowl has agreed to allow the greatest donor the honour of ridding him of his facial hair.

Posted in Editor's Report

Next Meeting

The next club meeting is on Thursday May 1, which is a fortnight from today. More information about club meetings is available on the Meetings page.

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Photo Stream

			Canberra Brewers Inc. posted a photo:	Images from the Canberra Brewers stall at Canberra's Multicultural Festival.
Multicultural Festival 2014
			Canberra Brewers Inc. posted a photo:	Stephen "Lawfo" Lawford presents his English Mild.
A mild presentation
			Canberra Brewers Inc. posted a photo:	Images from the Canberra Brewers stall at Canberra's Multicultural Festival.
Multicultural Festival 2014
			Canberra Brewers Inc. posted a photo:	Images from the Canberra Brewers stall at Canberra's Multicultural Festival.
Multicultural Festival 2014