Monday, October 22, 2007

Defiant brewing determination

Promptly going out and buying 55 pounds of pilsner malt ... Consider that the homebrewer equivalent of getting back on the horse that bucked you.

Fresh from his trip to the Samuel Adams LongShot homebrewer contest, “ESB” Dave Pobutkiewicz is saddling up again. He has a score to settle.

Dave’s maibock, or helles bock ( pick a label), took him from Pompton Lakes, NJ, to Denver and the final round of LongShot judging at the 2007 Great American Beer Festival. But that’s where things sort of stop. Notice we said "stop," not "end."

The judges opted to not include Dave’s brew in next year’s LongShot sixpack (which Boston Beer will brew and send to package stores near you beginning next February). That distinction goes to a double IPA by Mike McDole of California, a weizenbock from Rodney Kibzey from Illinois, and a grape ale from Boston Beer employee Lili Hess. (A Samuel Adams staff homebrew competition is part of the LongShot contest, if you recall. )

But back to Dave.

Ask him what he’ll enter in 2008, and he’ll say that he’d rather not say, revealing only that every beer style category is fair game.

He’s an experienced homebrewer with plenty of honed recipes that have won over an array of contest judges (in state and regional competitions) and colleagues in his club, the Defiant Homebrewers, whose members, by the way, have done well in past versions of the LongShot contest, but still find that top prize – the sixpack – elusive.

Dave thinks he can remedy that. He is, after all, a Defiant Homebrewer. And that 55 pounds of malt is a good start.

NOTE: Special thanks to Russ Pobutkiewicz for the photos of Dave with Boston Beer's Jim Koch (top) and Dave during an interview (above).