February Meeting Minutes:

 

The SOB’s trudged through snow and slick roads on February 20, 2019 to attend the first official meeting of the year. At this meeting we discussed upcoming events for the year, asked for member input, and explored High Holder Brewing Company with owner and head brewer Mike Schlosser.

Treasurer’s Report

Kurt summed up our financial status. In fact, we do have money in both the Casks and Caskets as well as the general club fund

Calendar

The tentative calendar for the year was revealed as well as the theme. This year we will be focused on “Beers of the Cheese State.” Meaning, that we will be bringing in beers from some of your favorite local breweries and discussing the brewing history of our great state. With that being said, we’re planning on a few more off-site meetings this year so we can get the full effect of the breweries. Below is a schedule for our next few meetings:

Date

Discussion

Location

March 20

Barrel 41

Barrel 41, Neenah

April 17

Grains, Brewery TBD

O’marro’s, Oshkosh

May 15

Bare Bones

O’marro’s, Oshkosh

June 19

Brewery TBD

TBD

 

We’re looking for you input to help fill out the “TBD” sections in our calendar. Where do you want to go? Which breweries would you like to learn about?

Events

We are in the works of planning several great events for the year. That’s right, we’re going to be drinking more beers! Our first event of the year, in fact, already occurred. Several SOB’s traveled down to the Fond du lac Brewfest to sling some beers. Among the most well received beers was Jeff Eaton’s lucky charm cream ale and Darren Reichenberger’s raspberry cream ale. Way to go, fellas! Coming up we have a few important events:

April 7th – Barebones Wort Share: Sign up HERE to visit Jody at Bare Bones Brewery to collect some wort out of a professional mash tun. Brewers are allowed a maximum of five gallons of wort to hop, spice, ferment, to their liking. At the following May meeting brewers are invited to bring their finished beer back to the club so we can sample each interpretation of the beer. A few spots will be available at the brewery for brewers to set up their systems and carry their brew out with Jody at Bare Bones (first come first serve.)
May 4th – Big Brew Day: A time proven classic, Big Brew Day is returning for another year. SOB’s will gather at the Cellar to brew together and enjoy the merriment of learning each other’s brewing techniques and systems. Sign up to come.
May 19th – Chilton Beer Bus: We will once again be offering a beer bus up to the Chilton Beer fest. Why not spend a day drinking with some of your favorite SOB’s? More information and a signup sheet to come.
June 22nd – World of Beer Festival: This is a new one! The Beer Baron’s of Milwaukee have invited us to their famous beer festival hosted at the Bavarian Bier Haus. Warm up your kettles and start brewing your world-class beers to serve to some thirsty patrons. More information will be coming at future meeting, but for now sign up HERE.
July 17th – SOB Club Competition: Back by popular demand, the monthly meeting in July will once again be the club competition. A few slight changes have been made. First, the competition will be held at Fox River Brewing Company in Oshkosh. This will allow us a little more elbow room to judge beers. Second, Fox River has agreed to brew the winning beer (the only limitation is that wild soured beers will not be brewed.) More information and a sign-up sheet will be released as the date approaches.
Bus Tours: We’re planning, but we need your help. Where do you want to go? When do you want to go? Aaaaah! Help! We need your ideas to help make these events what you want.
Member Brew Days: Do you want to host a SOB brew day at your house? Contact us to let us know. You tell us the day and we’ll work to fill in the details.
Cask’s and Caskets: This is a little way out. However, we’re in the planning process. Currently we’re trying to pick the date: either, the last Saturday in October (Oct. 26) or first Saturday in November (Nov. 2). Additionally, we’re trying to change some homebrew laws. Mainly we want to pressure the state to allow us to charge admission for our all charity event. If you have connections or a way to help, please don’t hesitate! We can use all the help we can get.

Survey

Feel like we’re asking for a lot of information from you? Fear not! We sent out a handy-dandy survey for you to answer all these questions. Where is it? In the February email blast, of course. Click on the link under the survey picture and help us help you!

Newsletter

Speaking of email blasts, we’re adding a little more spice to your life. Logan Anderson will be taking over the monthly email blasts. In addition, he’ll be adding a monthly newsletter for you to peruse. The newsletter will contain information about member achievements, monthly recipes and knowledge, local beer events, and quirky jokes for your pleasure! If there is more information you’d like to see, please share!

Beer Brackets

Our final order of business? March madness brackets! No, not that kind; the beer drinking kind! Oshkosh Independent is hosting a local brew battle in which brews from your favorite breweries are pitted against each other in an attempt to be named the areas best beer. The Independent is looking for our help. All we need to do is show up at the designated local establishment on the day of the battle and count votes. Couldn’t be simpler. If that’s not enough the Independent will give out a $15 gift card for you to sip down a few beers as you count, what a deal! If you want more information about the event find it HERE. The event bracket can be found HERE. And the sign-up form is HERE.

SOB Brews

Does it sound like the SOB’s have gone soft and didn’t offer any beer at the meeting? That’s not true at all! Kurt Weina brought in his Backyard Sunshine Centennial IPA. A “wet” IPA made with homegrown hops and boasting a clean, easy drinking bitterness that is hard to find in an IPA. 5 ounces of hops went into this bad boy, but our lips weren’t left puckering as might be expected. Another specially hopped beer tasted was Brian Schneider’s Saison. A dark version of the style and hopped with wild Allenville hops, this brew highlighted the versatility of belle saison yeast. Brian reported that the yeast was slow to start but left an enjoyable character in the finished beer. Leave it to Jeff Eaton to think up something strange; his Cocoa Pebbles Brown Ale is a cereal mashed beer with what else but cocoa pebbles. In Chuck’s word’s “you can taste that,” and boy could you. This was such an enjoyable beer it left some of us wondering, can we do a mash with only cereal? Fourth on the list was Mike Engles Vanilla Porter. Again, we were all amazed by the talents of the pico-brew system. Strong roasted flavors were bolstered by a smooth vanilla backbone that left us wanting more. A little off the beer trail, Shawn Lord brought in his Strawberry Rhubarb wine. After a short search for the cork screw we popped that baby open and past it around. It was a perfect fruit wine that had us ready for the summer months!

High Holder Brewing Company Tour

On to the main event! Mike Schlosser invited us to High Holder, his microbrewery located in the back room of O’marro’s. Mike opened shop in January 2018 and quickly outgrew the originalsystem. Within the first 6 months High Holder had to expand to a 1-barrel system to meet production needs and keep kegs filled. In the first year of operation 10-12 different brews were pumped out of the brewery and the people drank them up faster than Mike could fill kegs. On tap the night of our meeting High Holder had a Barrel Aged Doppelbock and Altbier on top. That wasn’t all, a special grisette brewed with a saison and Brett yeast was poured just for the club. The beer reminded us of a summertime Kolsch with slightly more tartness. For a one-manoperation brewing on the weekends after his full-time job, Mike has elevated High Holder to high standard. Plans of expansion are in the works with a full taproom possible in the next 2-5 years. Thanks, Mike, for the awesome tour and beer!

That concludes February’s meeting! A lot of news and information was shared. And even more great beers were poured. See you next month.