2011 May Meeting #151

The WHALES Newsletter and Minutes - May 2011 - Issue #151

Woodbridge Homebrewers Ale & Lager Enthusiasts Society

Crafting Award Winning Beer, Mead, and Cider Since 1996


Project Updates, Lat 48 IPA Tasting, BJCP Study Group, AHA Big Brew 

Club Calendar

June 16th to 18th - NHC, San Diego CA.(Long time Whale Mike Tripka to talk with Ken Schramm on Mead Making.)

June 25th - WHALES Picnic - Warren Park Woodbridge Township

July 19th - Club Only Competition – Meads



Check the Whales website at (http://www.whalesbrewclub.com) for the latest announcements, meeting minutes, and calendar updates. Feel free to upload pictures, add events to the calendar, review beers/bars, and post comments in the forums. Bobby welcomes club member article contributions and new content ideas to the website.

The website has a new member profile system installed so now is a great time to get your info updated. It includes fields to collect information about your brewery and other brewing related data. The steering committee humbly requests that you post a "head shot" style picture there also so that all members can put a face to the name. This is extremely helpful for newer members. You can edit your profile by going to "member info", then "edit my profile". Keep in mind, this info is always hidden from the general public so there should be no privacy concerns.

Dave N. (Dave_N@whalesbrewclub.com) is the official WHALES club librarian and maintains the database of materials, both books and DVDs, in the "WHALES Physical Library Collection" section of the clubs website. The WHALES physical library collection contains over 30 items that can be checked out and it is free for club members. If you would like to check out any materials from the library, please post a comment in the "WHALES Physical Library Collection" section of the clubs website and Dave will bring the requested item to the next club meeting.

Check out the Crazy Frank section of the member discussion forums on our website to see the list of ongoing discounts at various homebrew stores and other vendors of interest. You'll find a sign up sheet to become a new/renewed AHA member (with your complimentary subscription to Zymergy magazine) which will get you $5 off your annual membership (reg price of $38).


The May meeting was held at JJ Bitting's as usual with 32 Whales and 1 guest in attendance.

The meeting officially was kicked off at 8:01 Bobby started off the meeting and checked to see if there were new members in attendance (1 total, he came before the meeting started but couldn't stay). Visitors were welcomed as well and asked to sign in with Frank before leaving and to pick up an application if interested in joining. Also as a reminder for all member please be sure to check in on the sign in sheet by the stairs.

Dave N. brought a mix of items from the library for members to do a "Quick Checkout" again. All the items were checked out. Remember you can aways reserve library items online here.

Bobby let everyone know that on May 7th the club celebrated the AHA Big Brew Day in Sayreville, NJ at Brian's house. He did an amazing job hosting being a new member. Awesome job Brian, Thanks!

Bobby reviewed the upcoming schedule of events. Several things are coming up over the next several months (Picnic, AHA, COC's, etc). View the dates above for a complete listing and the Calendar as well available here.

The calendar system on the website is available for all members to post beer/brewing related events. If you have any issue or you are not comfortable posting you can email the event to Frank at frank_w@whalesbrewclub.com. Be sure to include the event name, date, time, venue, city and state.

The WHALES picnic is quickly approaching (June 25th) and members were ask to bring a side dish of an item to share as well reminded it is a BYOB event. The club will be providing a main dish (yet to be decided).

Frank gave an update on the Philly Bus trip and we are holding for a small change in dates and bus availability. The idea of holding off till September was mentioned. Frank is looking into it.

BJCP study group still has room if anyone else is interested. June 2nd first meetup at Anthony's house in Nutley. $50 beer fee. Bobby shared a conversation he had about the issue of the testing spots and home/sponsoring clubs holding spots for their members even though it is suppose to be first come/first serve. Not much that can really be done about it at this point.

Next an overview of the current projects of the club were reviewed:

Apple Port II – After the tasting last month, the consensus was to let it sit on the oak further. Gary gave an update that he continued to monitor it and would report back in June.

Framboise – The club tasted three samples tonight. One was from Bobby's barrel that has 4 years of bugs, one from JD's barrel which is fresh wood and fresh cultures, and the 3rd was from JD's batch but never touched the barrel. Bobby's barrel had a Barn Yard flavor and had sourness present. JD's batch was sour as well and some people struggled to pick which was more sour but an agreement that JD's had more sour present was agreed upon. The none barrel batch had some nice Funk going as well. Some questions came up such as : Are we blending the batches? (Up to the individuals to find a share from the opposite barrel to blend with) and Is it racked and then Aged? (No it lives in the current Barrel till completion). The sample were enjoyed and only the pain of waiting a year was left for the share owners.

Wee Whale II – Bobby reported, as well as others, that the brew day was Awesome. Thanks to Keith Story for hosting it and to Gary and Joe S for organizing. There were a several dedicated Whales there busting their ass the entire day. Gary reported that they ended up with 140 Gallons, 53 gallons went into the bourdon barrel and the rest went into the stainless steel. Oh and A LOT of Propane was used ;)

Next the Latitude 48 Deconstructed tasting exercise began. Bobby procured a few 12 packs of the Sam Adams special release. Bobby also provided a handout breaking down each of the beers in the pack. The five varieties of hops were as follows: Ahtanum, EKG, Hallertau, Simcoe and Zeus. The sixth bottle was the Lat 48 IPA with the original mix of all 5 hops - It was definitely the least favorite of the bunch.

Bobby wished everyone Good Luck for the Buzz Off comp that is on this coming Sat (May 21st) Also a Big Congrats to the Boyle brothers for NHC win and for moving on to the June finals in San Diego.

Reminder that the CoC for Meads is coming in July. Colin gave an update on the HBOY as well.

The night ended on with the flight. Dustin kicked off the flight with some Budweiser!!! WHAT?!? :) It was a fresh batch direct from the plant that was bottle only a few days earlier - How is that for being fresh! Mike D brought a small army of samples that included an American Lager, Imperial Kolsch and an IPA. Don and Stephen Boyle brought an English Brown, Anthony D -Imp Stout, Brian Spence - Amarillo APA, Tom Paffrath - German Alt, John Hartman - Overhopped Amber, Ed D - Vanilla Porter, Prez - NE Cider and Frank wrapped it up with a 2010 bottle of Dogfish Head Bitches Brew that he has been storing for a while.


The June 21st meeting is as usual on the 3rd Tuesday of the month, 8pm, upstairs loft at JJ Bittings.

The club continues to seek out volunteers to make presentations at club meetings. Members can discuss anything from beer styles, equipment, techniques, ingredients, or any other topics of general interest. The club is also looking for folks interested in setting up some class trips to breweries, bars, apiaries, and pitching club brewing projects, etc. Contact the steering committee (steering@whalesbrewclub.com) if you'd like to contribute to a meeting. We will be sure to allow enough time for the speaker and we will try to ensure that the presenter has the floor.

Finally, keep in mind that the steering committee meets just about every 1st Tuesday of the month so if there is any topic you'd like discussed regarding just about anything the club does, email us. Ideas? How about pitching a club brewing project?

Frank - Club Secretary