May 3, 2012

A tasty science

On the weekends, much of Knox’s 21-and-over crowd drinks beer, but for one club, the fun is in making it.
The time has come again for the Chemistry Club’s annual brewing competition. The club has split into different brewing companies who will make their own beer. At the end of the term, the club will taste the brews and award a prize to the best concoction.
This is club president and senior Chelsea Coley’s second year brewing beer. Coley is a part of the Creepy Bunny Brewing Company. Coley said her brew last year was “kind of terrible;” she still believed that “this year is our year.”
The team had already recovered from a minor disaster earlier on in the process when a thermometer shattered in their brew.
Coley’s favorite part of the experience is the tasting at the Chemistry Club picnic. The picnic is like a sendoff for the club’s seniors.
Junior Emma Lorenzen, a first-time brewer and another member of the Creepy Bunny Brewery, was particularly looking forward to this part.
“The entire reason I decided to do brewing this year is to … spend more time with the seniors who are leaving,” Lorenzen said.
The breweries all make their beer from brewing kits. Many follow the directions very closely, but for the Squatting Duck Brewery, the beer would not be the same without their secret ingredients.
If the Squatting Duck Brewery wins this year, this will be junior Brian Paul’s second victory in a row. Last year, his team won with a Whiskey Barrel Stout. This year, they hope to win with a Cream Ale infused with crushed vanilla beans.
Part of a good brewing company is a good name. The Spotted Cow microbrew and many other similar names inspired Squatting Duck’s name.
“You need to pair a random verb with a random noun,” Paul said.
Paul said that he and brewing go way back — both his father and grandfather brewed. The experience reminds him of watching his dad brewing.
“I’ve been thinking of going home and making mead,” Paul said.
Although some of the club members agreed that not all of the beers end up great, Paul said those that do are fantastic.
“Nothing can beat a good microbrew that’s a few days old,” Paul said. “It’s a good competition every year … but I do not plan on handing over the trophy this year.”

Paige Anderson
Paige Anderson is a junior double majoring in computer science and creative writing. This is her second year as co-Mosaic editor. Outside of TKS, Paige has written for Knox’s Office of Communications and for her high school newspaper; her in-depth work won a third-place medal in the Redwood Empire Excellence in Journalism Awards competition. Paige will intern at Amazon during the summer of 2013.


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