Brew Biz: Werts and All

Written by Ken Carman for

Ken Carman is a BJCP judge; homebrewer since 1979, club member at Escambia Bay and Music City Homebrewers, who has been interviewing professional brewers all over the east coast for over 10 years.

The Topic: Amber Waves of Grain Homebrew Competition

I know Buffalo fairly well. My brother-in-law went to college there, and I had clients in western New York for years. I even had one in St. Catherine’s, across the Canadian border, and one on Grand Island. But… I haven’t been to either of those two in years. Buffalo? I went there during my yearly tours for quite a while, and still pass by twice to three times a year: on my way to other destinations.

Being from New York State originally also helped, as well as passing back and forth with my wife to our place in the Adirondacks.

I was planning a short tour up north: I’m a musical storyteller and educational service provider by trade, and noticed the Buffalo area was having a homebrew competition. So I worked out a few things and headed north early, clunking out in my old tour bus that’s stored in northeast Ohio for the night. Then I headed to New York: waking up at 3:30am so I could be sure I’d arrive at The Knights of Columbus on Grand Island at 8:30 where the competition was being held, with well over 600 beers entered! I felt bad: I could only make half of the affair and made a smaller dent in those entries than many judges there. Performing a program Wednesday in Nashville kind of cut my time short.

I got there about an hour early so I hopped on the net at the McD’s around the corner.
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