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What you need to know for our 2017 Homebrew Competition

Things to keep in mind if you decide to enter this year's homebrew competition:

  • Homebrewers should bring a sanitized vessel with them to transport their wort home. Buckets, carboys (please be extra careful handling glass carboys) and cornelius kegs are the most common vessels. You can leave them in your vehicle until it’s time to pick up your wort, but again, please sanitize your vessel prior to your pick-up time to help us make sure everyone gets their wort.
  • Make sure to get there early, as supplies will be limited. Signing up early (starts at 11 a.m.) will help guarantee wort. We will start distributing wort at 1 p.m.
  • You can send someone else to pick up your wort. We aren’t concerned with who takes it, just who turns in bottles to be judged in October.
  • We do ask that you don’t bring friends or relatives who don’t brew, just so you can have an extra 5+ gallons of wort. We are relying on the goodwill of homebrewers to help each other out and share the wealth. Please help us make sure all who want to compete are able.
  • You can add whatever you like to your recipe/submission. However, if your entry is chosen as the winner, we will have to be able to figure out a way to make your beer on a much larger scale. So please, take good, detailed notes of everything you do to the wort.
  • We won’t know exactly how much we will end up with until the wort is made, but last year we were able to give 5 gallons of wort to more than 200 homebrewers. We hope to be in that ballpark again this year, but things happen during wort transfers that can affect that number. We recommend arriving early to sign up and make sure you get your wort.
  • The wort will be made with 100-percent Michigan Pale Ale malt. The initial OE of the base wort will be roughly 12 Plato (about 1.048 gravity), which will yield a knock-out gravity of 13+ Plato (about 1.052 gravity) after the final boil. Left unchanged, the fermentability will result in a beer with approximately 6% ABV. The wort will be minimally boiled and entirely unhopped, giving you complete freedom for recipes and allow your imagination to run wild from there. However, homebrewers will have to complete the kettle boil on their own systems. There are no restrictions or style guidelines for the final beer, so long as it uses the base wort from Bell's Brewery, Inc.
  • Competition entries (four 12 oz. bottles) are due to the Bell’s General Store by 7 p.m., Sunday, October 29.

For more on this year's competition, go here. 

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