Merry Christmas everyone! It’s now December 27th and the holiday craziness is slowly starting to subside. I could tell that was the case because it only took about 35 minutes to get to home from work today. There are two large shopping malls in my commuting path and navigating through them was rather painless today.

The days leading up to Christmas are a nightmare. Long lines, impatient and rude cashiers, impatient and rude shoppers, even yours truly has been known to be guilty of flipping someone off as they steal my parking spot. Sadly, I lose my holiday spirit more and more each year. Not because of the above mentioned things, but because it seems to have lost something since my childhood.

I remember big snow outside, trips to see Santa at the mall, and going through the catalogs of Service Merchandise and Toys‐R‐Us to pick out the exact toys I wanted. One of my favorite Christmas memories: every year, K‐Mart had this Christmas picture coloring contest. My mom and dad would take me there and we’d get one of the entry forms and we’d go home to color it. I never won, but I did get to see my entry hanging up in front of the store. Of course I outgrew going to see Santa, and the catalogs have been replaced by and Yeah I know it is cliché nowadays to rant on and on about how the holidays lost their true meaning. But how do you restore that warm feeling that Christmas has instilled in us as children? Have kids of my own? I’m sure my chick will be glad to hear that! (that’s the sound of sarcasm)

Enough of the sentiments, on to the gifts! I received a couple of beer related presents this year. First is a gift certificate from my future bro & sis‐in‐law for a local brew on premise and homebrew supply shop. Nice! I will be burning that up in the near future. The second gift is a set of 8 Peroni beer glasses from my future mother‐in‐law: another excellent gift. The etching on the glass is very cool…especially when there’s good beer in it! :)

That’s enough for now. I’ll be back later to talk beer.


just getting started

So I guess I should start off by introducing myself: My name is Paul, I live in New Jersey and I enjoy brewing my own beer. I started home brewing over a year ago with an inexpensive brew at home kit that my girl gave to me for Christmas. This was the basic “open up a couple of cans of malt extract, pour it into some boiling water, add sugar, cool, then ferment. My expectations weren’t too high considering that this was my first attempt. But I have to say the beer turned out to be pretty good.

Since then, I have replaced that small brewing kit with larger primary fermenters and a couple of glass carboys. I’m working on plans for a new brew system which will allow me to brew more beer per batch. Lately, I’ve been brewing in 5 gallon batches because I’m limited in space and storage. Hopefully once my new brew system is complete, I can brew at least 10 gallons with the capacity to do more if desired.

As for this site, well, we’ll see where it goes. I have a couple of ideas that I’m going to implement. In the next couple of weeks I’m going to build a recipe section and a home brewing reference section. The reference section will have info on the different varieties of hops, brewing terminology (like what the hell is sparging anyway?) and a list of places to buy home brew supplies. I’ll also be linking to other brew related sites.

I’m really looking forward to building this site up and sharing with my fellow home brewers!