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Upholding Oshkosh's Brewing Traditions

Anyone who brews their own beer is a real SOB!

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Meetings

April 2019 Meeting

April Meeting Minutes:

The SOB’s found ourselves back at O’marro’s this month for an evening of informative sipping and laughter. We welcomed several new faces and enjoyed a wide variety of beverages.

New Member Welcome:

This month you SOB’s did a great job of spreading the word and inviting guests. Colin and Rodney are two fine fellas who are just getting into brewing. So far, they’re doing a great job; they’re extract brewers who brought in a few bottles of beer to share. More on those later. Jonathan and Micah were introduced next. Jonathan has a few years of brewing experience and is starting to get into all grain brewing. Micah, on the other hand,has a year’s worth of brewing experience and is utilizing an extract set up. Last but not least, Stafford and Tom are a brewing pair sent over by our friends at Barebones. Tom has a long history of brewing but now sticks mostly to wines and helping Stafford in his brewing explorations. Stafford began brewing a few months ago with IPAs, only recently finding the decadence and excitement of brewing darker style beers. Thanks to all of you for inviting such fun groups of people. We hope to see allthe new faces at upcoming events and meetings.

Treasurer’s Report:

That time of year is once again approaching – membership renewals. See Kurt to renew your membership by June. The cost is still $20 for the year. New members can also see Kurt to officially register. If you have been waiting for membership cards, they’re hot off the press. Again, see our esteemed treasurer for your proof of membership.

Survey Results:

We got the survey results in and are using them to improve the SOB experience. Moreover, the club gave away a brewing clock to one lucky survey participant. Congratulations Matt Saunders and thank you for helping us!

Barebones Wort Share:

Earlier this month the SOB’s were at Barebones to help Jody brew and English Brown Ale. The wort produced during the day was shared amongst the group to be fermented and flavored however they see fit. Some brewers are adding strange yeast strains, some are adding sugars, while others are adding funky adjuncts. These beers will be shared at the May meeting which will be held at Barebones. Stay tuned for more on that!

Big Brew Day:

This year national Big Brew day is held on Saturday May 4th. We’re hosting a big brew at the Cellar to celebrate. We’ll begin brewing at 9AM. Feel free to brew or just stop in for some samples and company. The AHA has announced that blonde ales and NEIPA’s are this year’s “official’ styles (no need to brew either.) Sign up HERE if you are planning to stop by. So, get ready for the big day and spread the word far and wide!

Bus Trips:

The bus trips have been planned! This Spring we’re taking a bus tour to the Wausau/Waupaca region. On the itinerary are stops at Red Eye for lunch, Bull Falls, 22 Lakes, and HH Hinder. The bus will depart May 11th at 9:30 AM from the old JCP parking lot in Oshkosh. We will return the same day at approximately 7:30 PM. Anticipated cost is $35 which includes bus fares and a tour at Red Eye (pay at the bus). If you’re interested, sign up HERE. Additionally, the SOB’s are offering a bus ride to the Chilton beer fest on May 19th. The cost is $10 for the bus ride; there are still (2) tickets available for the event at a cost of $40 (contact Jeff Eaton). The bus will depart the old JCP parking lot at 11:30 AM on the 19th and return at 7:00 PM. To get on the bus sign up HERE. Remember to pay Jeff and Becky for event and bus ride tickets.

SOB Club Competition:

Every July the SOB’s host a club competition for members. We’re changing things up this year. First, the competition (and July meeting) will be held at Fox River Brewing Co. in Oshkosh; the winning beer will then be brewed at Fox River. Second, the July competition will only accept beer entries. We will be hosting an additional competition at our September meeting at Rushford for all mead, wine, and cider entries. You heard that right, two competitions this year! We are investigating the possibilities of having BJCP judges for the events, making this a great opportunity to receive feedback on your brews. More information will be coming soon. Until then, whip up some grade-A beverages, set aside (4) 12-oz bottles (or the equivalent), and prep for the 3rd annual club competition!

Lake Arrowhead Beer Camp:

We have once again been invited to the beer camp/walk at Lake Arrowhead campground. This year the event takes place on the weekend of August 23rd-25th. Three campsites will be set aside for SOB’s to occupy during the event at no cost; all you need to do is bring beer to serve during the walk. Last year three groups camped during the event, two brewed, and more stopped down to serve. A sign-up sheet will be available at future meetings.

Contacting Representatives:

The SOB’s are on a mission to update homebrew laws that would allow us to charge admission at events where homebrew is served. This will help us to raise more money for charity at events like Casks and Caskets. To aid in this effort, the SOB’s are drafting a letter that you can sign and send to your local representatives. This letter will be available at future meetings and events (particularly Big Brew Day.)

Member Beers:

Ty Shippee brought in two versions of “quick” lagered beers. His bohemian rye lager took only 10 days to lager utilizing gelatin for clarity, a kegerator to maintain temperatures, and a diacetyl rest that raises the beer slowly raised the temperature to 65℉ for a few days (until it stops stinking.) Both of Ty’s rye and vienna lagers are fine examples of the style, with only a slight diacetyl character. Not bad for a short lagering period. New member Rodney and Colin brought in some of their first brews, which are recipes available at the Cellar. Rodney’s Irish red and Colin’s Blonde are both excellent interpretations of Dave’s original recipe. They’re clean, easy drinking, and true to style. Keep up the good work, fellas! Chuck shared a few bottles of cinnamon cider that he’s been aging since 2014. It smelled like fall and the 19 (ish) ABV was easily disguised behind a dry, enjoyable drink.

Lion’s Tail Beers:

This month we focused on beers from Lion’s Tail Brewing in Neenah. Head brewer Alex Wenzel is a chemical engineer by trade with an obsession for water. Each beer he brews is carefully treated with the appropriate water adjustments to create the perfect water profile for that style. Alex brews a wide range of styles, including traditional styles like Rock the Block Bock (which donates 50% of the profits to Habitat for Humanity) and Too Caught Up IPA which is a tried and true centennial IPA recipe. More adventurous beers like Pineapple Milkshake Pale Ale and the upcoming Golden Stout Collaboration can also be found on tap. Thank you to Alex and the crew at Lion’s Tail for sending us delicious samples of your amazing beers!

March 2019 Meeting

March Meeting Minutes:
This was a hectic month for the SOB’s. Besides our usual imbibing, we were leaderless, which almost lead to mass hysteria and chaos. Thankfully, Scott, stepped in to save the day. With a commanding voice, our previous secretary quickly ushered us through the night’s agenda.

New Member Welcome:
Three new members. You read that right. Three brave souls officially joined the SOB’s on
March 20th – are they up for the fun, drinking, and comradery? It certainly seems so! Justin
Hammer was the first to be introduced. He is an avid brewer with 3 years of experience,
pumping out a whopping 25(ish) brews annually. Holy Toledo, way to go Justin! Brian Hickey was our next new member. Brian is new to the area and new to the brewing world. Although he hasn’t yet brewed a beer, he’s a craft beer fanatic (hopefully we can help develop him into full-fledged brewer.) Finally, owner and head brewer of Barrel 41 Nate Sharpless joined the SOB’s. Welcome to all our new members; we’re honored to be a part of your brewing journey!

Treasurer’s Report:
Kurt gave us our monthly financial update to assure us that we aren’t broke. Thanks, Kurt, for keeping track of our money!

Newsletter/Email/Survey:
Are you receiving the bimonthly emails? If not, contact us to ensure that you are added to the
email list. Why? Because of the exciting information we’re sharing via email. Like the monthly newsletter which contains tidbits of brewing knowledge, club events, and local beer activities.
Also, in the email blast was a 10-question survey which will help the board to develop club events and activities for your enjoyment.

Cask and Caskets Update:
Tentatively, we are planning to host Casks and Caskets for a third year at the Hilton Garden Inn in Oshkosh. To improve attendance, we are planning to host the event the weekend after
Halloween. Hopefully more people will be free and ready to party that weekend as opposed to the weekend before. On a side note, are you looking to be more involved in the club? You can easily help by joining the Cask and Caskets board. You will meet once monthly to discuss and plan for the event.

Bus Trips:
A spring brewery tour trip is in the planning stages. At this point Travis and Jeff are anticipating a tour date of May 11th. We will be heading west this year to explore the breweries of the Stevens Point, Wausau, and Waupaca areas. More information and a sign-up sheet will be released as plans are solidified. Stay tuned.

Member Brew Days:

Are you interested in hosting a “mini” Big Brew day at your house? Call it a medium brew day,
if you will. Simply contact a board member with the date, location, and attendance limit for your brew day. We’ll create a sign-up sheet and organize the details for your brew day.
Upcoming Club Events:
The SOB’s are always on the move. Maybe we’re brewing together, maybe we’re drinking
together, often we’re doing both! Mark your calendars for these upcoming events:
April 6th
 – Lee’s book signing at Fox River Brewing Company in Oshkosh from 1-3 pm.
It’s not everyday that one of our members is recognized for a achieving a goal as
momentous as having a book published. Let’s get out there to support the hard work and
dedication Lee has put into Winnebago County Beer.
April 7th: Barebones Wort Share 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.)
April 17th – Our monthly meeting will be back at O’marro’s where Dave from the Cellar
will be teaching us about grains. On a side note, who wants to buy the Cellar?
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.
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?
Barrel 41 Tour:
The second installment in our Breweries of the Cheese State adventure brought us to Barrel 41 in Neenah. Owner and Head Brewer (and now club member) Nate Sharpless welcomed us with open arms and great beers. Barrel 41 has been opened for a little under 6 months, making it one of the most recent additions to the areas thriving beer scene. The microbrewery utilizes a 7-barrel electric brew system. On an average week Nate is brewing one to two batches to keep the 5 fermenters full and beer flowing from the taps. Speaking of the beer, a wide range of styles are
offered on tap, ranging from imperial stouts to saisons. We highly encourage everyone to take advantage of the warm, log cabin ambiance of Barrel 41 to sip down some grade-A beers. A special thanks to Nate and the crew at Barrel 41 for hosting this rowdy bunch of SOBs

February 2019 Meeting

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.

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