Father Beer is Stepping Down as President, Continuing as Founder

Talk about an industry always in flux.

The Brewers Association, the trade organization that represents small and independent craft brewers in America, recently announced that its founder and president, Charlie Papazian is stepping down as POBA. (That’s President of the Brewers Association, inspired by POTUS.)

Here’s the quick rundown on Charlie Papazian’s credentials, in case you’re not familiar with the amazing man responsible for American craft beer as we know it:

  • Founder, the Brewers Association (BA)
  • Founder, the American Homebrewers Association (AHA)
  • Founder, Institute for Brewing Studies
  • Founder, Brewers Publications, a leading publisher of books on beer and brewing  (For the Love of Hops: The Practical Guide to Aroma, Bitterness and the Culture of Hops; Malt: A Practical Guide from Field to Brew House; Water: A Comprehensive Guide for Brewers; and Yeast: The Practical Guide to Beer Fermentation among them)
  • Founder, the World Beer Cup (the most prestigious beer competition in the world)
  • Founder, the Great American Beer Festival, a major industry event that attracts 60,000 attendees annually
  • Founding publisher, Zymurgy magazine for homebrewers and the New Brewer, the flagship journal for small and independent craft brewers
  • Author, The Complete Joy of Homebrewing, the “hombrewer’s bible” (along with several subsequent editions and other books)

Charlie Papazian is basically the godfather of the U.S. brewing industry, if the godfather was more like Mr. Rogers. He lobbied for homebrewing before it was legal, started two magazines for homebrewers and independent craft brewers, wrote the book(s) that many brewers depended on to learn their craft, and launched the major beer associations and events that attract tens of thousands of brewers and brewing industry advocates today. Oh, and he’s also a nuclear engineer.

After 37 years at the BA’s helm, he’ll be transforming his role into “founder,” and plans to continue involvement in several craft beer industry programs, the BA said.

“He will continue to attend key Brewers Association and American Homebrewers Association events. He will also participate in other events in the U.S. and internationally, offering his perspectives on beer, brewing and its impact on social and business culture.”

He will also continue to contribute to both Zymurgy and New Brewer.

Like many of us who find ourselves wrapped up in this business and its ancillary community, Papazian is in it for the people.

“The tens of thousands of individual stories chronicling the success and joy that craft beer has brought to our lives inspires me. Ultimately it’s the people and their communities who have been and continue to be involved with beer who make our current beer world so special. I look forward to continued opportunities that will enhance the world of beer.”Charlie Papazian

Although I’ve not yet had the pleasure of meeting Mr. Papazian, I look forward to the possibility someday. I wish him the best in this new stage as an ever-growing presence and proponent of the craft beer industry.


Featured image via the Brewers Association: “CHARLIE PAPAZIAN ADOPTS NEW ROLE AT BREWERS ASSOCIATION,” Jan. 2, 2016.


5 New York Breweries Take Home 2015 Great American Beer Festival Medals

Photo via BrewersAssociation.org.

Photo via BrewersAssociation.org.

On Sept. 26, 2015, the Great American Beer Festival (GABF) awarded 275 professional medals to 242 craft breweries representing small and independent breweries throughout the United States.  This year, more than 700 breweries competed, with 423 entering for the first time. Of those first-time entrants, 38 took home medals to their breweries.

New York entered 20 breweries into the competition this year, with five taking home GABF medals.

2015 GABF New York winners:


Grimm Artisanal Ales of Brooklyn, N.Y. for their Double Negative
Category: Imperial Stout

Great South Bay Brewery of Bay Shore, N.Y. for their Hog Cabin
Category: Specialty Beer

Muscat Love, a recipe created by American Homebrewers Association member, Brian Giebel brewed in collaboration with the Great South Bay team
Category: GABF Pro-Am competition


Prison City Brewing of Auburn, N.Y. for their Bleek Worden
Category: Belgian-Style Blonde Ale or Pale Ale

Newburgh Brewing Co. of Newburgh, N.Y. for their Cream Ale
Category: English-Style Summer Ale

Crossroads Brewing Co. of Athens, N.Y. for their Black Rock Stout
Category: Export Stout

Congratulations to our New York winners and to all GABF winners and participants! For the full list of winners and awards, visit www.brewersassociation.org.

Brewing Video Tutorials and Courses on the Cheap (and Free!)

Beer lovers are, more often than not, drawn to the craft beer scene after trying a new style or being introduced to a better form of the beverage. Before you know it, there are tap takeovers, beer festivals, day trips and vacations planned exclusively for breweries and basically, we pretty much have beer on the brain at all times. But even if you memorize every BJCP style guideline and keep up with all the latest trends, the only way to truly know beer is to make it.

If you’re interested in learning how to make beer and don’t have plans for the Siebel Institute or the  International Centre for Brewing and Distilling (ICBD) just yet, there are several online courses that will accomplish the basic “how to” of homebrewing without the hefty tuition. Here are three that are actually worth considering, both for their content and the cost.

All-Grain & Partial Grain Brewing by Craft Beer & Brewing.

This intro video is only the beginning.

All-Grain & Partial Mash Brewing by Craft Beer & Brewing 
Price: FREE IF ENROLLED BY 8/25, otherwise $24.99, or $9.99/month for access to all Craft Beer & Brewing classes.

Along with publishing a monthly print magazine and regular digital content, Craft Beer & Brewing produces comprehensive brewing basics courses (as well as more advanced techniques) in their online homebrewing education platform. The course offerings range from extract brewing to partial to all grain, and each class offers step by step segments complete with downloadable, printable instructions and checklists for your brew session.

The video/slideshow/handout combo is a big draw for me, so even though I’ve been all grain brewing from the start, I’m registering for today’s free course and considering signing up for the monthly access. (My first foray into flavoring – strawberries and mint sprigs in a summer wheat ale – is currently fermenting, and I’d love to learn more about incorporating fresh ingredients into future brews. The yeast harvesting may have to wait.)

Enroll for the free class here – it’s FREE today (Tuesday, Aug. 25, 2015)!

Beer Brewing 101 by Brooklyn Brew Shop in collaboration with Brit + Co.

Look how happy she is after brewing her own beer!

Beer Brewing 101 by Brit + Co. and Brooklyn Brew Shop
Price: $19.99

Cutesy DIY fanatics, Brit + Co. recently collaborated with Brooklyn Brew Shop co-founder, Erica Shea to present Beer Brewing 101, a fun and easy guide to brewing a one-gallon batch of beer. The class uses Brooklyn Brew Shop’s Grapefruit Honey Ale beer making kit, which is also available for purchase at 10% off the original price of $40 when you buy the class for $20. The principles of this tutorial apply to any beer of any batch size, and divided by chapter, the course manages to condense the 4-6 hour brewing process down to less than 30 minutes of digestible, re-watchable content.

Check out Brooklyn Brew Shop’s blog post here or sign up for the class on Brit + Co.

Introduction to All Grain Brewing by the AHA.

Feel the satisfaction and joy of turning grains into beer.

Introduction to All Grain Brewing by the AHA
Price: Free?!

Although they don’t advertise these as brewing classes per se, the American Homebrewers Association is also full of resources and information on how to brew at the Beginner, Intermediate and Advanced levels. These include videos, recipes, how-to guides and tips detailing the brewing process from start to finish (with pictures!).  As a member of the AHA, I’m thrilled to discover this – and I’m pretty sure it’s available for anyone to use.

Peek at the “Let’s Brew” section for a multitude of homebrew recipes and free offerings on how to brew.

Learning is cool, go do it!

Beer Affair