SAN DIEGO—Some 2,700 homebrewers and beer enthusiasts gathered at the Town and Country Resort in San Diego for the 37th annual AHA National Homebrewers Conference presented by the American Homebrewers Association (AHA). A confluence of incredible beer, creativity and community, the conference culminates with the world’s largest beer competition: the AHA National Homebrew Competition.
Recognizing the most outstanding homemade beer, mead and cider produced by homebrewers worldwide, this year’s competition saw 7,663 entries from 3,170 homebrewers located in 50 states, the District of Columbia and 12 other locations around the world entered in the first round of the competition. In the final round of competition at the National Homebrewers Conference, 949 entries were evaluated by some of the top beer judges in the country. Over its 37-year history, the National Homebrew Competition has evaluated 118,911 brews. The first competition, held in 1979 in Boulder, Colo., judged 34 beers.
Winners of this year’s National Homebrew Competition include Oskar Norlander, Peter Salmond and Erik Norlander as Homebrewer of the Year with their Geuze; Brett Glenna as Cidermaker of the Year with his Common Cider; and Donald Boyle and Stephen Boyle as Meadmaker of the Year with their Semi-Sweet Blueberry Honey Traditional Mead. Mark Schoppe won the Ninkasi Award as the winningest brewer in the competition. Gold, silver and bronze medals were presented in 28 style categories.
“Each year we look forward to the AHA National Homebrewers Conference as an event for the community to come together and toast homebrewing’s best of the best, all while educating and inspiring each other,” said Gary Glass, director, American Homebrewers Association.
The conference also offered attendees the opportunity to hone their homebrewing skills by learning from a variety of expert speakers—92 in total—providing 56 distinct seminarsacross 14 educational tracks. Tomme Arthur, best known for co-founding Port Brewing Company and The Lost Abbey, keynoted the event. Attendees were also able to enjoy a series of events where they sampled each other’s brews and commercial craft beers. The Homebrew Expo & Social Club, Welcome Reception and Club Night were opportunities for participants to try craft beers and meads from homebrew clubs and breweries nationwide, while brewing up new friendships with their fellow hobbyists.
In 2016, homebrewers will meet in Baltimore from June 9-11 for the 38th rendition of the event.
The National Homebrewers Conference is made possible by the generous support of itssponsors.
About the American Homebrewers Association
The American Homebrewers Association has worked on behalf of the homebrewing community since 1978 and celebrates a membership of more than 44,000 homebrewers. The American Homebrewers Association (AHA) organizes events including the National Homebrewers Conference and National Homebrew Competition. The AHA also publishes Zymurgy magazine. The AHA is part of the Brewers Association, whoseBrewers Publications division is the largest publisher of contemporary and relevant brewing literature for today’s craft brewers and homebrewers.