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It looks like the Golden Urinal will be staying in New Jersey.

South Jersey’s Barley Legal Homebrewers club, one of the largest, if not THE largest, organized homebrew club in the Garden State, took home the Golden Urinal beer tap following last year’s annual National Homebrewers Conference, held in June in the club’s back yard of Philadelphia (the club meets every first Tuesday of the month at Iron Hill brewpub’s Maple Shade location).

The award used to be given to the club that brought the most kegs of homebrew to the national conference. When Barley Legal’s 80 or so members showed up at the 2013 conference with more than 130 kegs, Pissoir d’Or, as the Golden Urinal is also known, became the club’s to keep.

The American Homebrewers Association decided, after bestowing the urinal/tap upon Barley Legal, to end the annual practice, club President Evan Fritz tells Beer-Stained Letter.

Evan took some time out from the Barley Legal crowd’s observance of Big Brew last Saturday (May 3rd) to talk about the award on camera.

Barley Legal is a juggernaut of a homebrew club: Two of its members just went pro by opening Village Idiot Brewing in Mount Holly, and the guys behind Spellbound Brewing, also in Mount Holly, are club alums.

This isn’t the first time the AHA has changed course (coincidentally, perhaps) after the South Jersey homebrewers notched a win in an AHA event.

Three years ago, the club’s entry in the AHA’s Big Brew video contest won most-viewed, a victory that followed a 2010 AHA video contest win by the club (disclosure: Barley Legal’s video entries were shot and edited by Beer-Stained Letter).

When Big Brew 2012 rolled around, the AHA scrapped the 4-year-old video contest, without giving a reason on its website. (Via email to Beer-Stained Letter, the AHA said it had opted to try other ancillary homebrewer events for Big Brew.)


Published in News
Friday, 15 November 2013 22:55

AHA survey: Who is the American homebrewer?

Homebrewer Graphic
These are heady days for homebrewing.

Never has the hobby enjoyed the popularity that it does now, and much of its surging growth has happened over the past eight years.

Earlier this week, the American Homebrewers Association trumpeted some statistics about the brew-it-yourself crowd, estimating the U.S. has 1.2 million homebrewers who make about 2 million gallons of beer a year.

Published in News
Wednesday, 24 July 2013 02:13

Again on the cusp of a Longshot win


orth Jersey homebrewer
Dave Pobutkiewicz (pronounced POH-buh-kev-ich) has again advanced to the finals of Boston Beer Company's pro-am homebrew competition, finding further success with a hearty helles bock that has become one of his signature brews.

It's the second time for the 45-year-old homebrewer from Pompton Lakes (Passaic County). In 2007, the helles bock took Dave to Denver and Longshot contest judging at the Great American Beer Festival.

Published in News
Thursday, 27 June 2013 03:06

NHC: A talk with AHA's Gary Glass

Homebrew Survey GraphicWhich came first, homebrewing or craft brewing? 

The best answer may be that they're twins – not quite identical, certainly more than fraternal – arriving ever so close together, with craft beer growing a little faster than homebrewing, yet homebrewing never existing much more than a whisper away. 

And like any close family tie, especially among twins, one preternaturally knows what the other's thinking and doing. 

More practically, it's safe to say homebrewing helped launch the craft brewing industry, and virtually on a daily basis it creates new commercial brewers, while the taste for craft beer helps attract people to the hobby of brewing at home.

Published in News
Thursday, 27 June 2013 02:40

1,000 batches & a homebrew shop later

Brett MullinFor Brett Mullin, the carboys in the garage of a home where he was helping redo a basement begged the question. 

What are those? 

From where, exactly? 

Home. Yes, you can make beer in your garage, the homeowner said. 

Impressed and curious, Brett, then barely past his 18th birthday, was hooked on the idea and decided to give making beer at home a shot.

Published in News

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