Calling all homebrew enthusiasts! Homebrew Emporium is contributing to Hyper-Local Craft Brewfest ( in Davis and Union Squares in Somerville, Massachusetts) in a special session this year on Friday, June 14th. The whole night is dedicated to showcasing 20 different 5-gallon batches of beer and 2 batches of wine, presenting exactly what their homebrew equipment and delicious local ingredients can create. Everything from orange peel, caraway and coriander seeds to fresh locally produced smoked barley. Yes, that’s right, they are also well versed in making wine and sell kits from different regions. The fact that Randy Baril, the local homebrew guy, is headlining the event will thrill those that are interested in homebrewing.
Passion is the name of the game. No one brews because it’s an easy and cheap alternative; if anything it’s the opposite. It’s all about complete control of your beer- making it your own, integrated it into the local food movement, which Hyper-Local Brewfest encompasses.
Homebrewing has escalated in popularity over the last few years; these days every beer aficionado or friend you meet has dabbled in the craft. It seems to be in direct correlation with the local and do-it-yourself movement that has every conscious consumer finding they can make it themselves, not only better but also with the satisfactory feeling that you know every ingredient and put your heart and soul into creating it.
I had the chance to live the wonders of the Homebrew Emporium first hand, as Randy and his colleagues took me through the shop and the experience of the homebrewer. I was shown all the options, starting with your at homebrew kit and the different starter recipe boxes you can purchase (they even have their own line). From there he showed me all the different barley and malts they offer, including hops, spices, herbs and accessories to feed your creativity and influence your next brew.
I had the great opportunity to speak with Randy, the Vice President of Eastern Operations at Homebrew Emporium located in Cambridge, who had a jump-start on the trending passion. The store opened about 20 years ago, and Randy joined the Homebrew Emporium 7 years ago, which turned out to be perfect timing.
The event encompasses something Randy is very pleased with- emphasizing that a major factor of the homebrew world is the community. It’s not about making beer because you need it to survive, it’s about making a beer you can’t wait to share with your friends, who are just as enthused as you are. It tells a story, adding to the sense of community, joy and fun, which makes it an exciting hobby.
When asked what he was most excited about, Randy said, “I’m excited to see a bunch of high-quality homebrew right next to commercial beer. People will be able to find the homebrew beer to be of commercial caliber.” Anyone interested in pursuing homebrewing wont want to miss this exposure to what one needs to either expand his or her equipment/ingredients, or simply get started.