Club Posts

May Minutes

May 16th @ De Kleine Duivel

Introductions - Old Members/New Faces

Guild Updates

  • AHA membership is down and interest in homebrewing has seen a decline since its peak in early 2010s. If you have ideas to drive engagement and retention the guild is seeking input.
  • Maryland State Fair competition
    • Will be BJCP-judged on Friday, August 23.
    • Fair week is August 23 - September 2.
    • Entry drop-off will be August 20-21. If you drop off at Maryland Homebrew by August 19, John Jester will drive the entries up on the 20th or 21st
    • We are going to check on the availability of Nepenthe Homebrew Show as an alternative drop location. Will make an announcement if they are interested.
  • See the minutes for other announcements.

Upcoming Events

  • Guild Picnic & Wheat Beer Competition, June 1st
    • Hollofield Area, Shelter 300, 12:00-dusk.
    • There is a small $3 fee per car to enter the park, otherwise, this is a free event (BYOB and food to share). Guild will supply charcoal, paper products, ice, and some meat/rolls/condiments
    • Wheat beer comp w/ cash prizes.
    • Becky will be entering a wheat beer in the competition.
    • Members should coordinate on carpools.
    • AHBC’s Pints for Paws, June 15th
    • Homebrewcon, June 27-29
    • Howard County Rideshare Extravaganza, July 13th
      • Proposed route to include Sapwood Cellars, Black Flag, & Hysteria
      • Mark the day, more to come on transportation
    • Mashout - August 15-18
      • New location: 1812 Farm Brewery outside of Cumberland. They are setting up a flat field with electric, showers, etc.
      • Cost is estimated at $35 pp.
      • Folks are highly encouraged to coordinate a Baltibrew station.

    Old Business

    • Club gear liquidation - No Update
    • New quorum: 7 for simple majority, 9 for 2/3 majority

    New Business/Member Announcements

    • Mobtown Fermentations is looking to offload a water distiller. We can forward the information to anyone who is interested.
    • Gut High Festival is this Saturday at the Fadensonnen  Beirgarden for a celebration of all things fermented.

    Ed Topic - Sensory Mini-Panel - Becky

    • Becky led another mini-sensory panel featuring:
      • Ethyl hexanoate - aniseed, apple or liquorice
      • Isoamyl acetate - banana, peardrop
      • Hefeweizen - spicy & banana

    IRON BREWER – Battle Kolsch is on for June!

    Homebrew Swap!

April Minutes

April 18th @ De Kleine Duivel

Introductions - Old Members/New Faces

Guild Updates

Upcoming Events

  • Big Brew, May 4th! –update from Jude
    We are teaming up with Brewtherville. If you want to join in on a brew or are just planning on dropping by be sure to sign up on their spreadsheet.
  • Guild Picnic & Wheat Beer Competition, June 1st
    Things are looking good for the guild summer picnic at Patapsco State Park. If you are interested in competing in their wheat beer competition, just bring your entry and judging will be organized informally. The event is family friendly and an all around good time.

Old Business

  • Brubakes II Roundup!
    Winners were Becky, Max, & Laura with their Saazon and Pretzels with Beer Cheese. Runner up was Kris with his Lemon Ginger Saison and Hearty Muffin.
    We ended up with about 38 attendees, including 8 at the door.
    Feedback for next year:
    • Trash Cans & Dump Stations
    • Water Station
    • Rags/Towels for spills
    • Paperware for serving
    • Street signage/Sandwich boards
    • Revisit marketing ideas
  • Club gear liquidation is on the calendar.
    No updates for now. The plan is to get the inventory and do garage sale pricing.
  • New quorum: 7 for simple majority, 9 for 2/3 majority

New Business/Member Announcements

Ed Topic - Sensory Mini-Panel Number 1

Becky ran an awesome tasting panel on the following compounds:

  • Diacetyl: Butter, Butterscotch
  • Dimethyl sulfide (DMS): Cooked Corn or Vegetables
  • Isobutyraldehyde: Grainy, Husk-like, Nut-like
  • Eugenol: Spicey, Cloves, Allspice

IRON BREWER – Kris is the current Iron Brewer

Jon challenged Kris to battle Kolsch! Bring your entries to the June meeting!

*Homebrew Swap!*

March Minutes

Baltibrew Monthly Meeting Minutes
March 21 @ De Kleine Duivel

Introductions - Old Members/New Faces

Guild Updates

  • Based on the feedback from the club the Guild Holiday party will feature 4 prize categories next year.
  • The guild is still in the process of applying for non-profit status.
  • The BJCP course at MDHB started on 3/10. It’s a shorter 7 week course and a great way to sample a broad range of classic styles.
  • Guild Summer Picnic and Wheat Beer is on for Saturday, June 1st. They secured their normal shelter. This is a family friendly event in Patapsco Park. There is a $3 a car entry fee for the park.
  • If you are planning on going to Homebrewcon in Rhode Island this year they are trying to coordinate between the clubs. Ping John if you are making the trip to get plugged in to other MD clubs.

Upcoming Events

  • MALT Bus Trip, March 23rd
    17 seats were still available as of monday. If you don’t have anything going on this weekend please support the MALT club. Tickets are available at
  • Brubakes, April 14th!
    Competitor spots are still open. We have 8 or maybe 9 brewers/bakers present! Jon is looking into a glassware order. Time to get the word out!
  • Big Brew, May 4th!
    Brewtherville is going to do Big Brew @ BC Brewing and has extended an invitation. Jude will follow up with more information

Old Business

  • Nepenthe is open! Check it out!
  • Group Brew on 3/2 was a success! We brewed a traditional lambic and used Jon’s coolship. It was bubbling away a few days later so we definitely caught something. Caiti and Becky brewed a second portion to make up for some spillage during transfer. Caiti, Kris, and Becky will coordinate a tasting for some time next year to see how it came out!
  • Club gear liquidation is on the calendar.  Ciaran will take inventory when he has time.
  • New quorum: 7 for simple majority, 9 for 2/3 majority

New Business/Member Announcements

Ed Topic - Wild Cider & Mead Fermentation! (Part II)

  • Caiti gave a wonderful talk and Q&A on making Kombucha and brought three different fermented teas to sample. We will consolidate and send out a summary.


  • Kris notched his first Iron Brewer victory with a traditional hefeweizen featuring a ferulic acid rest!

*Homebrew Swap!*

Brübakes Returns April 14th!

Baltibrew returns to De Kleine Duivel for Brübakes II, a competition featuring homebrewed Saisons paired with homemade baked goods! Join us for a celebration of Spring, Earth Day, sustainable brewing practices, and the DIY spirit!

Wild Cider & Mead

Baltibrewer Caiti opened several bottles of her wild fermented beverages and talked about her thoughts on cider and mead at our Feburary Meeting!

Some Traditional Ferments

  • Basque sidra: Dry and sour, still, sharps and bittersharps
  • Norman cidre: Dry, naturally carbed, cool & slow fermetations (keeving), bittersweets
  • Welsh and English cider and scrumpy: Dry, funky styles from bittersweets, bittersharps
  • Cyser, pyment: Cider + mead, wine + mead
  • Methlegin: Spiced or herbal mead
  • Braggot: Mead + hops and/or wort

Cider Process

  • Select fruit - Sharps, bittersharps, & bittersweets preferable, though can amend with tannin or added wood at the end of fermentation. Mostly sweets/sharps commercially available
  • Grind fruits - grinder or juicer
  • Press - press or juicer
  • Measure sugars (ranges widely - 1.040-1.055)
  • Check for fermentation - may need to stir
  • Monitor over 4-7 months and package when gravity reaches 1.000 or stable. Sulfite, back sweeten, and amend tannins if desired. If you don’t sulfite, assume any bottling sugar will completely ferment.

Mead Process

  • Dilute raw honey at a volume ratio of 1:4 to 1:8 (12-6% finished abv)
  • Stir to induce a wild fermentation - until air bubbles form, may need to stir multiple days
  • Airlock and check back when vigorous bubbling subsides - monitor for a stuck fermentation (solution: add yeast nutrient and STIR)
  • Monitor over 4-10 months and package when gravity reaches 1.000 or stable. Sulfite, back sweeten, and amend tannins if desired. If you don’t sulfite, assume any bottling sugar will completely ferment.

Notes to Consider

  • Acetobacter: avoid by keeping your airlocks full and keep fermentations in a cool place.
  • Sulfur: reductive environment - not enough dissolved oxygen (more stirring)
  • Light isn’t a huge problem unless you are using hops. Avoid direct, prolonged light - but without hops there is nothing to “skunk”
  • Good cider yeasts if you want to pitch something anyway: cider or white wine yeasts work well, including Red Star Cote Des Blanc, Montrachet, Premier Blanc, and Premier Cuvee.
  • Apple varieties available locally (I recommend Brown’s Orchard in PA):
    • Jonathan
    • Rome Beauty
    • Crispin
    • Stayman Winesap
    • York Imperial
    • Northern Spy

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