Nevada State Homebrew Championship

Summer changes things, right?  Yesterday, I brewed for the first time since March 1st, almost 5 months.

But hey, seasons change, and we have a contest on the horizon, the Nevada State Homebrewing Championship (NSHC).  Our Las Vegas homebrewing buds, SNAFU, are hosting and the judging dates are October 17th and 18th.

The competition website is here, where everyone entering has to register.  Registration opens September 1st.  You can add entries anytime up until the deadline, but all entries must be received in Vegas by October 11th.

We hope to have Southern Wine and Spirits ship all of our entries for free, meaning we will have to have a big packing party to get them all in cases.  When?, not sure yet, but probably around the 1st of October.  More on that later.

All the other details are on the comp website.  The most important thing to do now is get brewing.

Club Meeting July 5th

Club meeting at the Reno Homebrewer on Saturday, July 5th, at 6:00 P.M.
The main thrust/theme of this meeting will be the upcoming NCHF event in September, and whether or not we really want/need to attend. If you are making beer for the Hoppy Hour session, it is really important that you attend, or at least contact Rob at the Reno Homebrewer.
Standard club meeting rules apply (bring beer). The Reno Homebrewer will supply Sausage Items,  so please bring whatever else you deem appropriate for a club meeting. We may be asking someone else to show up early, transport and set up the club booth at this year’s NCHF,
P.S.,  Those not attending this meeting may be elected to perform tasks they didn’t know they had to perform (just kidding….).


Congratulations Jason Hobbs!

A great big “Way to Go!” goes to Jason Hobbs for winning 2nd Place Nationally in the Belgian Strong Ales Category (cat. 18), for his Belgian Dark Strong Ale (18E).

To put this in perspective, Jason’s Dark Strong Ale was competing against Blond Ales (18A), Dubbels (18B), Tripels (18C), Golden Strong Ales (18D), and other Dark Strong Ales.  All of these are considered advanced styles, and brewers are quite passionate about them.  Consequently, it’s a big category that had 408 entries nationwide.

Another way to look at it, there are 12 Regions nationally, and each conducted their own preliminary competitions in April.  The top three Category 18′s in each region advanced to the Nationals.  So Jason’s entry was one of 36 of the best Belgian Strong Ales in the country, and was judged the 2nd best out of all of them.  Quite an accomplishment.

Again, well done Jason!

Frank ‘N Stein

The end is near!

For Tom being the host of the annual beer and sausage extravaganza, anyway.  So come celebrate the end of a WZZ era.  Be there to enjoy some unique brews and fabulous fare!

Saturday, June 14th at 6 PM.
1766 Forney Ct, in Sparks.

Questions??  Call Tom at 813-8042 or 787-6732.  Please bring a salad, side dish or dessert.  Want to take over this WZZ tradition?  Contact Rob at the Reno Homebrewer, 329-ALES.

(Map Below)


1766 Forney Ct.

loading map - please wait...

1766 Forney Ct. 39.544586, -119.709571

Thanks Jason and Nicole

Thanks for hosting at your home, and providing a warm (although you could not control the winds, what’s up with that?) hospitable environment for fellow zymurgists, fans, and friends.

The tasting of competition beers (another benefit of 3 bottles per entry) was a hit, and likely that practice will continue until the supply runs out.   Although, at Frank’n’Stein (June 14th, see post) allowances for sampling contest beers may not be practical, considering the fastidious brewing preparation employed by our most accomplished host Tom Baldwin.  We may need to simply focus our preparations on great dishes to harmoniously accompany the brew selection provided (which in past year’s has covered most every one of the BJCP style categories♥).

However, back to Jason and Nicole, speaking as one who recently hosted a Whiz meeting, well done, and thank you so very much for opening your home and going to all the trouble to accompany us and our humanity.  May God bless what we strive at, and make our endeavors rich in promise, fellowship, and goodness.

And please, everyone, feel free to post a comment.  Everyone would get a kick out of it.  Other than good taste, there are no censorship rules, and it makes the site more friendly and interactive.

Judging the 2014 Great Basin Brew-Off

Score Sheets at Reno Homebrewer

Now awaiting your pick-up, perusal, and discussion at the Reno Homebrewer, are the score sheets for local brewers.  Feel free to open them up there, as Rob is a nationally ranked judge, Jon is a certified judge, and many customers have a great deal of experience with contests and score sheets.  If your fairly new to the game of beer judging, someone there can help your understanding of the comments written.  You can also contact me about anything contest related.

Medals, for those who were not at the Awards Ceremony, are included in the envelopes.

Out-of-towners (which includes Susanville, Fallon, and Dayton) are getting their scoresheets and medals mailed.


Cheers, it was a great contest, and looking forward to next year.

Keep in mind the Nevada State Homebrew Championship, in Las Vegas this year,  The date is mid-October , so they will probably open up for entries around late August or early September.

judging 2

About Us

Who We Are

Washoe Zephyr Zymurgists (WZZ – pronounced whiz) is the homebrew club of the Greater Reno/Sparks-Northern Nevada-Eastern Sierra of California area.  Anyone who enjoys homebrewing is encouraged to join us in discussing beer at our monthly meetings and club events.

In addition, informal meetings and discussions can always be had at our unofficial club headquarters,  The Reno Homebrewer, 2335 Dickerson Rd, Reno, NV 89509.  775-329-ALES (2537).


The best way to join is visit with us at any meeting, see if the club is a good fit, and sign up when you’re ready.  Sign ups are accomplished at The Reno Homebrewer.  The dues are $25/calendar year.

Club History

The Washoe Zephyr Zymurgists homebrew club was founded in June of 1985 by charter members Rich Golden (first president), Eric McClary, Ron Badley, Penny & Ken Wyatt, Becky & Steve Bamberger, and Jim & Donna Roderick. Penny [Wyatt] McClary and Ron Badley continue on as WZZ’rs to this day. Rob Bates and Tom Young were early members that are also currently active. The original club name was Sierra Unorganized Draft Suckers (SUDS), but the name was switched to our current moniker, presumably after the group became organized.

The genesis for a homebrew club blossomed from casual homebrew tastings at Eric McClary’s Washoe Wine & Cheese shop. Eric was selling the first available homebrew equipment in Reno prior to closing the doors on the establishment and spurred gatherings by homebrewers to discuss their creations. After the store closed, the folks who had enjoyed tastings at the shop decided to form the homebrew club.

The WZZ club has prospered ever since!   The club has encouraged BJCP certification of many of its members, including two Master judges four National judges.


Sadly, one of our most loved and outstanding members, Eric McClary disappeared July 2nd 2002 in Michigan while on a camping trip with his wife Penny, another founding WZZ member. He was 49 years old and suffered from Parkinson’s at the time. He served as president of the club for many years, co-founded the first brewpub in the Reno area, Great Basin Brewing Company, where he served as brewmaster until his illness became too advanced, attained Master certification in the BJCP (the first to reach that level in Nevada!), and was an excellent winemaker to boot. He will always be remembered as a kind and generous member of our community.

With almost 30 years as a homebrew club, some of the original BJCP members, and leaders in the BJCP organization, WZZ is active and strong in the broader homebrew community. Our members continue to strive to excel in their brewing and judging skills and are always interested to mentor new people that share in the desire to enhance their brewing and beer evaluation skills.

Hey, Let’s Meet at Jason’s!

Whiz meeting for May!

Where:  Jason Hobbs’ home

Address: 3124 Clan Alpine Dr., Sparks, 89434 (map below)

When:  Saturday, May 17th, 6 PM

What to bring:  Food to share mainly, and hmm..let’s see..maybe some homebrew?

Also, lot’s of leftover contest entries will be brought for sharing and taking home,

3124 Clan Alpine Dr

loading map - please wait...

3124 Clan Alpine Dr 39.559920, -119.713938