BOTL Info

BOTL is a club that was founded as a means for our members to educate themselves and others about brewing beer, ciders and meads. We are all in this hobby as like minded individuals that have a thirst for knowledge and an appetite for an enjoyable time. Most of us are from Holland, MI and the surrounding communities.
We are not accepting new members at this time.
For more information about our fine organization please email us at brewersonthelake@gmail.com
We meet on the second Thursday of each month at the New Holland Pub. Start time 7 PM.

Please bring 3 bottles of this month's style homebrew that you want to share or a different style of your homebrew.
When bringing your homebrew to share, please bring your recipe too.

Styles of each month:
January – Barleywine, Winter Warmer, Strong Ales
February - Belgian/French Ales, Lambics and funky stuff
March – English Ales and Milds
April - Lagers, Kolsch and Hybrids and Alts
May –
Cider, Cysers, Perry and Meads
June - Pale Ale, IPA and Ryes
July – Ambers and Reds
August – Wheat, Wit, Weizens and Fruit Beers
September –
Scottish Ales and Browns
October – Oktoberfest, Pumpkin, and Spiced Beers
November – Stouts and Porters
December – Saturday, Dec. 2 Christmas party, best of cellar and potluck lunch

Wednesday, May 30, 2012

Nice Beer Locator While Traveling

 This is a great little website for locating brewpubs and breweries nationwide, try it for your travels. beermapping

Monday, May 21, 2012

Still No Homebrewing In Alabama

This homebrewer is glad that I live in the beautiful state of Michigan and not Alabama where homebrewing is illegal.
 ‎ We Just Ran Out Of Time   posted May 17, 2012 4:36 AM by Brant Warren
 I am sorry to report that the Homebrew bill died at midnight last night, when the Senate adjourned without getting to our bill. Though it is still too painful to try to look on the bright side, there is something to say about the bill dying because time ran out, rather than being voted down. We progressed farther down the legislative process this year than ever before, and yes, we will be back in 2013.



Thursday, May 17, 2012

Get One of These and Don't Get Shorted!

The "Piaget" Beer Gauge:  Don't Get Short Poured thebeergauge
Ask yourself the following:  Is your bartender sloppy, cavalier, or imprecise when pouring your favorite micro-brew, or is he just trying to increase his profit margin?
 When your local pubs say they are selling you a pint of beer, you should get a pint (i.e., 16 oz). Not 12 oz or even 14 oz, but 16 oz of beer. A "pint" is a standard U.S. liquid measure,  or precisely 16 oz of liquid.
 As it turns out, the majority of the volume in a standard US pint glass is in the relatively small height in the top part of the glass. In fact, if a beer is poured to within about 1/2 inch from the top, 13% of the beer is GONE.  If the beer is poured to about one inch from the top of the glass, an astonishing 25% of the beer is missing from your pint.

Wednesday, May 16, 2012

Craft Beer Quiz

 See if you are an American craft beer know-it-all. craft beer quiz

G.R. Ties Ashville for Beer City Title

by Mittenbrew - Grand Rapids is the new BeerCity USA 2012!
The poll closed early Monday morning with a “statistical tie” between the West Michigan city and three-time winner Asheville, N.C.
 The annual poll is conducted by homebrew godfather Charlie Papazian, who showed the final tally as an exact tie, based on a three percent “margin of anomalies.” Both cities received 17,849 of 55,926 votes, or 32 percent each.
 Among the breweries in Grand Rapids are Founders Brewing Co., Brewery Vivant, BOB’s House of Brews, Harmony Brewing, The Hideout Brewing Company, HopCat and Schmohz.
In the nearby outlying areas are New Holland Brewing Co., White Flame Brewing Company, Jaden James Brewery, Saugatuck Brewing Company, Michigan Beer Cellar, Old Boys Brew House, Odd Side Ales and Vander Mill.
  Founders owner Dave Engbers is passionate about his brewery, but he gives all the credit back to the people.
“I think (Grand Rapids won) because of the phenomenal beer enthusiasts we have in Michigan,” Engbers said. “The people came out and spoke. We’ve had great dialogue with some of the folks down in Asheville, another thriving metropolitan beer community.”
 Co-founder and vice president of marketing for Founders, Engbers called the BeerCity USA crown a testament to West Michigan’s “thriving brewing industry.” He is not naive to that fact that Founders attracts a large draw to Grand Rapids, pointing to its being the second-highest rated brewery in the world by RateBeer for two straight years. “We’re doing what we love,” Engbers said. “The fact that other people are jumping on board is just a testament to the industry.”
 Engbers credits other leaders such as Mark Sellers of HopCat for helping educate the beer culture and other brewers quietly doing their part.“I really think there’s just a great beer culture here in West Michigan,” Engbers said.
 The culture is a supportive one, or “non-competitive,” as some might term it.
 If you come visit Grand Rapids and don’t make it to a brewery most of the restaurants have Michigan beers on tap.  Jason Spaulding said. “You come to our town, you’re going be surrounded by local beer. That’s a take away when they come visit us.”
Finally, Spaulding credits the Michigan Brewers Guild’s annual Winter Beer Festival for putting Grand Rapids on the map. “We saw people who traveled from Ohio, Illinois, Indiana. I met someone who came from Texas just to go to this Winter Beer Festival,” Spaulding said.
The nominating process for Beer City USA was April 15-21. In all, 31 cities made the final poll, which opened May 1 and ended early Monday morning. Winning isn’t everything, but both Engbers and Spaulding agreed it puts Grand Rapids on the map.
“It’s really great for West Michigan to get some recognition for the great beer community it is,” Engbers said.

Thursday, May 3, 2012

New Holland Expansion

by Garret Ellison - Don’t be surprised if you see a large fire-breathing beast perched atop the new outdoor fermenting tanks installed at the New Holland Brewing Company in the future. The new equipment installed at the brewery’s production facility in Holland Township this week are the largest pieces of a $3 million expansion by New Holland this year to meet “exponential” demand growth for specialty brews like their Dragon’s Milk. The five new 400-barrel outdoor tanks, shipped over from Germany, will allow the brewery to more than double brewing capacity, said CEO Brett VanderKamp. “We couldn’t push another drop of beer through the system right now,” said VanderKamp, who started New Holland in 1996 with Jason Spaulding, who left to establish Brewery Vivant in Grand Rapids.
 New Holland anticipates brewing about 23,000 barrels this year. The new tanks will allow the company to reach 50,000 barrels per year, said VanderKamp. The company is experiencing 40 to 50 percent in top line revenue growth, said VanderKamp, although he declined to release sales figures. New Holland distributed 15,000 barrels of beer in 13 states in 2011. Each barrel holds about 31 gallons.
 “We’re seeing across-the-board growth in both the mainstay brands like Mad Hatter, and solid growth in our Dragon’s Milk,” he said. This year, New Holland is doubling production of Dragon’s Milk, a bourbon barrel-aged ale with complex flavors of oak, vanilla bean and chocolate. The “high gravity” beer clocks in at 10 percent alcohol by volume. New Holland’s website describes the painstakingly-crafted brew as a “crown jewel.” The brewery recently built a new aging cellar to hold up to 3,200 Kentucky bourbon barrels, which the Dragon’s Milk matures in for at least 90 days.
 Brett VanderKamp, president of New Holland Brewing Company, talks about the construction of five 400-barrel outdoor fermenters that are part of a $3 million expansion project which will more than double the company's brewing capacity. Other changes to the production facility include a rebuilt bright conditioning tank cellar, which will house four tanks by the end of May, said Brewmaster John Haggerty. New Holland also added a new centrifuge to help clarify larger batches of beer more quickly.
 The expansion will allow New Holland to not only expand their distribution footprint around the country, but also to expand product availability on shelves within the current distribution area, which VanderKamp said was “critical” for the brewery. The brewery brought on another four brewers amid the production expansion. They anticipate creating another 8 to 10 jobs in the next two years, he said. The brewery started laying the groundwork for the expansion about a year ago. Haggerty began looking around the country at operations using the outdoor system and settled on tanks built by a Germany company called Ziemann.
Haggerty said the tanks are temperature-controlled and built to withstand the heat of summer as well as the cold of winter without any adverse side effects to the beer. Each tank has six inches of foam insulation blown into the space between the exterior cladding and the stainless tank wall. The tanks were constructed with an indoor room at the bottom for the brewer to access without having to bundle up in January.
“I think we are the first brewery in Michigan to use these outdoor tanks,” said VanderKamp. “Most everybody had gone the more traditional route of building a building around the tanks.”
The tanks are costing more upfront, but should pay off in the long-run in reduced heating, building maintenance and other overhead costs, he said.