April 2019 Club Events

By | April 15, 2019

So far RIBS has had an eventful month! 

The 9th Annual Ocean State Homebrew Competition was an amazing success once again! There was a total 563 judged entries in 36 separate judging categories. It took two nights of pre-judging and three judging sessions during the competition weekend to get through it all. OSHC represented all BJCP major Beer, Mead and Cider categories and nearly all subcategories as well. Entries were sent from 18 different states from Maine to Tennessee to Michigan and all the way from Oregon. Through entry fees and an awesome charity raffle OSHC raised $2200 dollars for the Rhode Island Community Food Bank and were able to collect 450 pounds of food as well. Also important to note, OSHC recycled nearly every plastic cup used. All empty bottles were taken away to be reused again and all remaining entry beers were distributed to be enjoyed and reused as well. Any remaining cardboard boxes were broken down for recycling as well.

Monthly Meeting: RIBS was able to host Eric Olson of Olson and Son Hopyard for a hops growing presentation. Eric was able to educate our members about the hop growing process on his multi-location hop farms. His business is family run and in addition to creating great hops to Rhode Island brewers, Eric also advocates for families of children with disabilities.  We are very grateful that Eric spent the evening with us once again and we look forward to future home-brews with local hops.  For more information on Olson and Son Hopyard please check out their Facebook page https://www.facebook.com/olsonandsonhops  

Lastly, RIBS hosted their annual April Sours event. Members spent the day sharing some of their favorite sour beers from vintage blended lambics to the humblest fruited goses.  Members also emptied  the barrel of the RIBS Barrel-Aged Golden Sour and divvied it up into kegs. And of course there was a  group brew day happening at the event as well! 

This month has been a blast and RIBS looks forward to all the upcoming meetings and events that will be had as we are quickly approaching the summer months. Cheers!

Belgian Strong Beers Competition (Inner Club)

By | March 4, 2019

The RIBS had their Belgian Strong Beers Competition during the February 2019 meeting featuring the following categories:  Belgian Dubbel (26B) , Belgian Tripel (26C), and Belgian Quad (26D)

The winner of the competition was Dan Clark with his Trappist Monkē Fükr Belgian Tripel Ale (9% ABV)

The event was filled with great Belgian style ales provided by: Ryan Kopp, Joshua Fogg, Michael Gauthier, Chirs Rideout, Dan Clark, Tim Champagne, Todd Orr, Jay Coutu, and Jim Marshall.

Special thanks to all of our judges who participated in the competition. 

Please see below for style guidelines provided by The Brewers Association Beer Style Guidelines.

Belgian-Style Dubbel

  • Color: Brown to very dark
  • Clarity: Chill haze is acceptable at low temperatures. Slight yeast haze may be evident in bottle conditioned versions.
  • Perceived Malt Aroma & Flavor: Cocoa, dark or dried fruit and/or caramel aroma attributes should be present along with malty sweetness.
  • Perceived Hop Aroma & Flavor: Low, if present.
  • Perceived Bitterness: Medium-low to medium
  • Fermentation Characteristics: Fruity-estery aromas and flavors (especially banana) are appropriate at low levels. Diacetyl character should not be perceived.
  • Body: Low to medium

Belgian-Style Tripel

  • Color: Pale to light amber
  • Clarity: Chill haze is acceptable at low temperatures. Traditional Tripels are bottle conditioned and may exhibit slight yeast haze. However, yeast should not be intentionally roused.
  • Perceived Malt Aroma & Flavor: Low sweetness from very pale malts should be present. There should be no roasted or dark malt character.
  • Perceived Hop Aroma & Flavor: Low, if present
  • Perceived Bitterness: Medium to medium-high
  • Fermentation Characteristics: A complex, sometimes mildly spicy, aroma and flavor characterize this style. Clove-like phenolic aroma and flavor may be very low. Fruity-estery aromas and flavors, including banana, are also common, but not required. Traditional Tripels are often well attenuated. Alcohol strength and flavor should be perceived.
  • Body: Medium
  • Additional notes: Head should be dense and mousse-like. Brewing sugar may be used to lighten the body. Hop/malt character should be balanced. The overall beer flavor may finish sweet, though any sweet finish should be light. Oxidized character, if evident in aged Tripels, should be mild and pleasant.

Belgian-Style Quadrupel

  • Color: Amber to dark brown
  • Clarity: Chill haze is acceptable at low temperatures
  • Perceived Malt Aroma & Flavor: Caramel, dark sugar and malty sweet flavors and aromas can be intense, but not cloying, and should complement fruitiness.
  • Perceived Hop Aroma & Flavor: Not perceived to very low
  • Perceived Bitterness: Low to medium-low
  • Fermentation Characteristics: Perception of alcohol can be strong. Complex fruity flavors, such as raisins, dates, figs, grapes and/or plums are often present and may be accompanied by wine-like attributes at low levels. Clove-like phenolic flavor and aroma should not be evident. Diacetyl and DMS should not be perceived.
  • Body: Full with creamy mouthfeel
  • Additional notes: Head should be dense and mousse-like. Quadrupels are well attenuated and are characterized by an intense alcohol presence balanced by other flavors, aromas and bitterness. They are well balanced with savoring/sipping-type drinkability. Oxidized character, if present in aged Quads, should be mild and pleasant.

Brews for the Bay 2018

By | October 7, 2018

Brews for the Bay - October 20, 2018

Brews for the Bay
Saturday October 20, 2018
12:00 PM – 5:00 PM
100 Save the Bay Dr
Providence, RI 02905

The Rhode Island Brewing Society is hosting its second annual charity event. This year we will be supporting Save the Bay!

Admission is a $10 suggested donation at the door, which will give you a commemorative tasting glass and raffle ticket. A variety of creative and tasty home brewed beer will be available for pours.

Come out! Have fun! Support a cause! Drink beer!

All proceeds will go to Save the Bay.
Kid friendly event.
No pets allowed on event property.

A HUGE thank you to all of the RIBS members who are helping make this event a reality and all of our raffle sponsors:

Blackstone Valley Brewing Supplies
Bottles Fine Wine, Cocktails, Craft Beer
Canned Heat
Foolproof Brewing
Providence Brewing
Ravenous Brewing Company
Shaidzon Beer Co.
Tessier’s General Store

Member Spotlight – Rich Spoehr

By | October 6, 2018

My story of how I got into homebrewing coincides with my development as a craft beer drinker.  When I was in college, I never cared for light domestic lagers (I only drank them out of necessity)- I was the guy in the room drinking Sam Adams or Long Trail (fancy beer).  I didn’t really understand beer styles in those days, but as I got older, my palate developed and I started appreciating a wider range of styles. I definitely got into the hop craze and over-indulged in my share of IPAs.  But it wasn’t an IPA that got me into homebrewing- it was Saranac Caramel Porter (I tried it at a beer festival). At the time, the beer tasted like candy, and I couldn’t find it anywhere else outside the festival! Then one fateful night about 5 years ago, I met a homebrewer (and currently RIBS President) named Alex MacIntosh who brought his homebrew to a party of a mutual friend.  It never occurred to me that you could brew beer at home! We quickly hit it off that night, and he later invited me over to his apartment where he showed me how to brew an extract beer. I was so amazed that I asked him if I could brew a beer using his equipment, and he graciously allowed it. My first target: a caramel porter. I ordered a recipe from Northern Brewer for a smoked porter along with some caramel extract.  I remember the base beer tasting pretty good. We used an eye dropper to measure the caramel extract in a sample size then Alex, using fancy math on a chalk board in his apartment, scaled that up to a 5 gallon batch. The beer exceeded my expectations. I was hooked.

I soon acquired my own equipment and later that same year, Alex and I both went all-grain and we shared a 10 gallon converted Igloo cooler as a mash tun (which is still my setup today!).  We traded the cooler back and forth for years (you hear about the gypsy brewer, but not so much about the gypsy brewery). My homebrewing hobby quickly began to consume much of my life. For a few years, I was catching shoplifters in retail.  I would be in the camera room listening to podcasts from The Brewing Network. I also read a book on homebrewing during my lunch breaks. It didn’t take long until I began reading those books outside of my lunch breaks…instead of actually catching shoplifters.  Needless to say, I wasn’t happy with my job at the time, and I wanted to see if I could jump into the craft beer industry. Long story made short- I made the jump, and I now owe my current career in craft beer to homebrewing (I’m currently a bartender and Level 2 Certified Cicerone at The Malted Barley Providence).  I couldn’t be happier.

Today, Belgian-style beers, Brett beers, and sours are my niche (both as a drinker and homebrewer) and I also love creating experimental beers.  I still like IPAs, but I’m honestly a bit bored of them, so they get brewed less often. But what I’m most excited about is that I’m in the process of starting a full blown sour and blending program in my homebrewery.  My wife and I just bought a new house, so my homebrewery got some major upgrades- including a chest freezer for fermentation-temperature control.

For the last few years around September/October, I brew the following Belgian Quad for my birthday in January.  It has won a couple of medals in local competitions and scored a 41 in the NHC in the Wood Aged Beer Category!

Birthday Quad

6 gallons

1.085 OG

1.016 FG

9.2% ABV


11# Weyerman Pilsner Malt

2# Munich Malt

1#Aromatic Malt

1#Flaked Wheat

.5#Special B


Mash @154F


.4oz Warrior (60 min)

2oz Hallertau (15 min)

4.2g crushed coriander seed (5 min)

1.4g cinnamon stick (2 min) (like half a cinnamon stick)


Ferment around 72F with WLP500 Monastery Ale Yeast


On day 4 of fermentation, boil for 15 min/cool to room temperature 1# of D90 Belgian Candi Sugar and add to the fermenter.  Shake fermenter to mix the syrup in.


On day 6 of fermentation, mix 1# of Turbinado Sugar with water until the sugar has desolved.  Boil for 15 min then cool to room temperature.  Add mixture to fermenter. Shake to mix.


Once fermentation has completed, transfer to secondary on top of 3oz of Medium Toast American oak cubes for two months.  As much as bottling sucks- I prefer how this beer tastes when bottle conditioned compared to on tap.  Cheers!

Member Spotlight – Dave Rufino

By | July 11, 2018

I am originally from New Jersey, but my mom is a Cranston native, so I have been coming to RI. Before settling in RI I spent 4 years in Philadelphia and 4 years in Boston where I studied French Horn. I moved to Providence in 2007 and began brewing a few months later.  I had been a craft beer lover for a while and decided to try it myself, so I bought myself a Mr. Beer kit. Two brews in, I decided to move up to 5 gallon extract batches and then to mini mash. I was enjoying the extract beers I was making, but finally got the push I needed while listening to an episode of The Sunday Session on The Brewing Network.  The guest was Michael “Mufasa” Ferguson, the brewmaster for the BJ’s Brewery chain, who said “if you weren’t mashing your own grains, you aren’t making beer.”. While I don’t agree with this statement, it did push me to build a mash tun and start doing all grain brewing in my apartment’s small kitchen with electric stove. My first 2 all-grain batches were actually served at my wedding! Looking back this was insane, but the Irish Red and blonde ale turned out great and were all received by the guests.`

Since going all grain I have slowly simplified my setup.  I did many years of batch sparge with my cooler mash tun and a  few years of Brew in a Bag, but now I brew using a Brewer’s Edge Mash and Boil all in one electric system.  It is a great little system that fits my brewing and lifestyle well.

I am really into brewing session beers with a majority of recent brews being under 5%.  A recipe I have been playing around with and tweaking recently is a nice easy drinking pale ale.  I tweak this a bit every time I brew and usually single hop with a different variety each time. Current version below:

  • 7# base malt (I am currently using Malting Company of Ireland Irish Ale Malt)
  • 1# Weyermann Munich 1
  • 1# Simpsons Golden Naked Oats
  • .5 oz Amarillo 30 minutes
  • .5 oz Amarillo 10 minutes
  • 1 oz Amarillo flameout 15 minute Whirlpool
  • 2 oz Amarillo dry hop

I adjust my water using the Bru’n water spreadsheet Pale Ale profile and adjust pH with either acid malt or a dose of 88% lactic acid.

Member Spotlight – Zac Belanger

By | April 26, 2018

I should begin with saying my first sip of beer was homebrew. It was mine, and it was bad.

My parents never drank (they do now, THANK GOD), so I wasn’t really interested in alcohol growing up. I started college and found out all the cool kids drink, so I should probably start. Obviously, you can’t buy beer until you’re 21 and I was deathly afraid of getting caught with a fake ID, so I thought, maybe I should make some of my own.

My first batch was an American blonde ale. It was made in the middle of the night on the 2nd floor community kitchen in Lane Hall at Auburn University. Yes, I didn’t know what I was doing, yes, I had a boil-over, yes, I missed my OG, and yes, I didn’t have a plan for chilling it. I want to take moment to apologize for whoever’s bags of ice I stole at 4AM Fall semester of 2008……The beer fermented in a plastic bucket in my closet for 3 weeks. We bottled it in 2 liter coke bottles and let it carbonate over a few weeks…… It tasted like shit and the process was a total mess, but I fell in love with brewing.

I spent the next 5 years brewing mini mash batches every two weeks. I loved it, my friends loved it, and to my surprise, and many others, my beer started tasting better…..I finally moved to a place with more room and spent nearly all the money I had on building a Brutus 10 system. It was beautiful, and I loved it. As expected, I went through some growing pains figuring out the ins and outs of all-grain brewing on a new system, but I had to figure it out quickly because my drunk-self committed to brewing all of the beer for my best friend’s wedding of 300 people. After many hours of brewing and ever more hours of bottling, labeling, and waxing, I had finally completed my task……I was amazed with the positive feedback from so many people and for the first time since I started brewing, I felt like I didn’t suck.

2014 rolls around and the first craft distillery opens in Alabama. Thankfully for me, it was right down the road. I became a regular a little too quickly. I would bring my homebrew every Wednesday night, and they would give me free whiskey….We had a great thing going….The distillery became very successful very quickly and they soon needed a second distiller…I still have no idea why they asked me, but they did, and I accepted immediately. I had no idea how to distill, but I was willing to learn. I learned a lot over the two years I was there and working in the industry really helped the quality of my homebrew and got me into barrel aging/fermenting.

In 2017 I moved to the great state of Rhode Island from East Alabama. I am out of the alcohol industry, so I am back to brewing more for myself. I sold my beloved Brutus 10 system before I moved up here and I have moved to an all-in-one all grain system (The Grainfather). It’s a great system and it lets my brew my two favorite styles of beer……Stouts and Sours. I will leave you with a recipe I was fortunate enough to brew on a commercial scale after winning a homebrew competition. It has been altered to work on my system.



15lb 2-Row
8oz Flaked Barley
4oz Caramunich
8oz Caramel 60

2lb Amber DME
2lb Dark DME


(cold steep)
1lb Black Malt
1lb Roasted Malt
8oz Chocolate Malt


1.5oz Centennial at 60
.75oz Centennial at 30
.25oz Centennial at 0


(added to secondary)
4oz Cocoa Nibs
3 Vanilla Beans
2 Cinnamon Sticks
2oz Peppers

Big Brew for National Homebrew Day 2018

By | April 9, 2018

Big Brew - May 5, 2018

Join RIBS as we celebrate National Homebrew Day!

AHA Big Brew with RIBS
Saturday May 5, 2018
11:00 AM – 7:00 PM
Green Acres Farm
51 Farm Street
North Smithfield, RI 02896

We will be hosting our second Big Brew at Green Acres Farm in North Smithfield on Saturday, May 5, 2018. The kegs will be tapped at 11:00 AM and the closing ceremony will begin at 6:00 PM. Throughout the day there will be various brewing demonstrations and other fun events. Check back often as our event schedule is subject to change.

Please RSVP on Facebook

RIBS absolutely LOVES dogs, but unfortunately, NO DOGS ARE ALLOWED AT THIS VENUE. We look forward to seeing your furry friends in June at the Providence Animal Rescue League’s annual Pints for Paws event though!
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Member Spotlight – Fredric Longabard

By | March 14, 2018

Fredric Longabard

I grew up in Wrentham, MA and went to College at Umass Lowell.  I’ve always been looking for better beer choices, at one of the Lowell bars we’d frequent my friends would be downstairs drinking 99 cent Bud Light and I’d be upstairs drinking 1.25 Sam Adams bottles.  In 2001 I moved to PA for work and while browsing at a book store I found a homebrewing book by Michael Jackson.  I didn’t know where to find the supplies and I was traveling a lot for work, so brewing got put on the back burner.  In 2009 I met someone and got married.  I moved to Raleigh, NC.  In 2011 her dad gave me his old equipment and a book, The Complete Joy of Home Brewing by Charlie Papazian.  My first attempt was with a Mr. Beer kit, Englishman’s Nut Brown Ale.  It tasted like bad apple juice.  In 2013 I found a homebrew supply store in Raleigh and decided to try an extract recipe, Toad Spit Stout.  I made it inside on the stove and had my first boil over.  My wife got home around midnight took one smell, wondered what I had made for dinner and hoped she didn’t have to eat it.  It came out great and I was hooked.  I moved my brewing to the garage and the next year went all grain.  I moved back to MA in late 2015.  In April of 2017 I reached out to RIBS about attending their April meeting.  I signed up at that meeting.  I’ve been adding knowledge and equipment ever since.  I recently started kegging and just ordered an electric brew kettle.

I brew every couple of months.  My problem is if I brew a 5 gallon batch it tends to hang around for a while.  I started with stouts and brown ales, then shifted toward trying IPA’s.  I’m actually heading back to the darker beers.  I haven’t re-brewed a lot of recipes, so I don’t really have a favorite yet.  Here is the latest beer I brewed, which I plan on doing again:

Draught Dublin-Style Stout (BYO March/April 2017)

  • 5.5 lb. UK Pale Malt
  • 2.25 lb. Flaked Barley
  • 1 lb. 500 L UK Roast Barley – Steeped Separately.
  • 1.75 oz. East Kent Golding (60 Min)
  • 0.5 oz. Challenger (60 Min)
  • Wyeast 1084

Member Spotlight – Ryan Durgin

By | January 24, 2018

Ryan DurginI grew up in Roxbury, NJ and went to the University of Rhode Island where I enjoyed lots of Yuengling and Natural Ice. A few friends and I talked about brewing for a long time before we did anything. Then after visiting the RIBS booth at the 2014 RI Brewfest John Windle and I finally split the cost of a starter kit and made our first extract beer. It was an Amber Ale TrueBrew kit and we were both hooked. About 6 months after that I switched to kegging instead of bottling and built my first Keezer. Then a month or two later I got a patio burner, mash tun and a larger boil kettle so I could move my brewhouse out of the kitchen and switch from extract to all grain. In January of 2016 John and I went to our first RIBS meeting and joined soon after.

I try to brew approximately every two weeks, usually 5 gallon batches and occasionally 10 gallons. I like to brew a lot’s of different styles however I’ve probably brewed California Commons the most. My favorite commercial beer is either Stone Xocoveza or Goose Island Bourbon County Stout.

Here’s a recipe for a California Common I’ve made a bunch of times:

  • 10 lbs of Wyermann Pale Ale Malt
  • 1 lb of Crystal 80
  • 1 oz Northern Brewer Hops (60 Minutes)
  • 0.5 oz Northern Brewer Hops (15 Minutes)
  • 0.5 oz Northern Brewer Hops (5 Minutes)
  • 1 oz Norther Brewer Hops (0 Minutes / Whirlpool)
  • White Labs WLP810 San Francisco Lager Yeast

Pints for PKD Update #2

By | November 3, 2017

Pints for PKD was a true success exceeding all that we had envisioned. The event
was the first charity event the club put on and also the first of its soon to be “Brew
and Hope” charity program. This new program will be a series of charity events that
we put on routinely for different organizations that our members hold dear to their
hearts. We are doing this because we realize that beer has the power to accomplish
incredible things.
The atmosphere was lively with the beer being sampled, the great food being eaten,
and the Mash Holes keeping it turned up how we like it. So good we decided not to
hold the Brewathlon in fear the vibes would be interrupted. We also had an
awesome and expansive line of donated raffle prizes from 22 beer centric
businesses throughout Rhode Island. The top prizes of the day were a large gift
certificate from Long Live Beerworks, a 50 lbs bag of malt from Apponaug Brewing,
and a brew day at Buttonwoods Brewery. All to drool over and drooled over they
We had set our ambitions high for this event with a goal of raising $1k. By the end
we had found ourselves at a $3,300 donation to forward over to the Polycystic
Kidney Disease Foundation. Completely blowing it all out of the water. This is all
thanks to our supporters, you beer and charity lovers.
Thank you again to all for some much love being shown. Cheers!!