Tuesday, April 9, 2019

National Beer Day with the SOBs at Bare Bones

I couldn't let this go by without making note of it... This past Sunday, November 7, the Society of Oshkosh Brewers (SOBs) celebrated National Beer Day by helping brew a batch of beer at Bare Bones Brewery.

A panoramic shot of the SOBs at Bare Bones. Pardon the distortions.

National Beer Day sounds like one of those phony holiday's made up by an advocacy group, but it actually marks an important date.  On April 7, 1933, the Cullen–Harrison Act made beer legal again for the first time since the start of Prohibition in 1920. Prohibition hadn't yet ended, that wouldn't happen for another nine months, but at least you could get a legal beer – so long as it was 4% ABV or less. It was better than nothing.

The SOB/Bare Bones celebration ended with each of the homebrewers taking home a carboy of freshly made wort to ferment into beer.

Wort going into SOB carboys.

This was the first time since the end of Prohibition that an Oshkosh brewery has supplied homebrewers with wort. But prior to April 7, 1933, this kind of thing wasn't unusual at all.

The Oshkosh Brewing Company, in particular, was a main supplier of wort to Oshkosh area homebrewers during the dry years.  They sold it in the form of malt syrup, a condensed wort, used by Prohibition-era homebrewers in the same way the SOBs are using the Bare Bones wort to make beer.

I took my carboy of wort home from Bare Bones and dosed it with a thick slurry of lager yeast. It's now in my basement fermenting into beer. I'm thinking I might end up dry hopping it with Hallertau hops. Why not? Other SOBs are going to turn their wort into Belgian-style Saison and English-style ale. Some are going to condition their beer on vanilla beans, others on chocolate. No two will be the same. And that's what homebrew is all about!

No comments:

Post a Comment