Presentation Guidelines & Requirements

The Homebrew Con (HBC) 2023 call for session proposals is now closed. Proposal decisions will be sent in January 2023.

The call for session proposals for HBC 2024 will open in Fall 2023. If you are interested in submitting a proposal to speak at HBC 2024, please fill out this form to be notified when the call for proposals opens.

For more information and questions in the meantime, contact Brewers Association Educational Content Manager MacKenzie Staples.

Tips & Best Practices for Proposal Submissions

  • Read the Submission Guidelines thoroughly before submitting a proposal!
  • Pick a topic that is timely, relevant, thought-provoking, or that genuinely interests you.
  • Be clear and captivating in your title and description. The working group is reviewing many proposals. A good title will invite the reviewers and attendees to join by making the topic and coverage distinct and engaging.
  • Make sure that your descriptions support the title. Provide clear learning objectives that demonstrate actionable takeaways. Make sure that your proposal clearly identifies what knowledge attendees will walk away with from your presentation and why this a must-have for the conference.
  • Know a lot about a topic? Prove it! Let us know what research, case studies, examples, and anecdotes support your expertise.
  • Proofread and edit what you’re submitting so reviewers know you’ve put in the time and effort for your submission.
  • Think about your audience: Who attends the conference? What are the key demographics for attendees of your session? What unique perspective or expertise can you present?

Suggested Session Topics by Educational Track

The Homebrew Con 2023 Working Group has prepared a list of suggested session topics for each educational track. These topics are not intended to be an exhaustive list, but rather a guide to potential speakers to some of the top priority areas of focus that the working group would like to see presented on at the event. Potential speakers are welcome to submit proposals beyond the scope of these suggestions but are encouraged to keep them in mind when planning their proposal content.

Download the full list of suggested topics

Beer Styles & Brewing Process – Sessions in this category discuss the many specific beer styles to choose from, the best ways to craft flavorful homebrews, and the processes you need to do so.

  • History and origins of specific styles
    • Could include emerging styles or old styles making a comeback, such as farmhouse ales, traditional German styles, pre-prohibition styles, etc.
  • A comparison of similar, but slightly different, styles, such as…
    • Oktoberfest, Märzen, and Festbier 
    • Cold IPA, Hoppy Lager, and India Pale Lager (IPL)
  • Homebrewing nitro styles; Could include the history and science, what makes a good beer style for nitro, and what equipment you need
  • Brewing cask beers at home, including where to source the equipment needed
  • Brewing specific style categories, such as…
    • Belgian styles and American-Belgo hybrids
    • Czech styles, including dark lagers
    • Native American and Indigenous beer styles 
    • Rice beers
  • Brewing “copycat” beers and where to find the recipes
  • Celebrating and exploring the beers, brews, and fermented drinks of Mexico
  • Cleaning, including tips for efficiency and/or clean-in-place at the homebrew scale
  • Homebrew safety
  • Brew day and brew system efficiency
  • Dark grains, including a comparison of full mash, late mash, sparge only, and cold steeping
  • Brewing with Kveik
  • Properly dosing for fruit beers, including when to add fruit and the impact on flavor, proper sanitization, and the benefits and drawbacks of different options (purees, raw, extracts, etc.)
  • Homebrewing low and no-alcohol beers
  • Brewing gluten free beer
  • Brewing split batches

Quality, Sensory & Ingredients – If you want to improve your homebrew or hone your palate, look no further than this educational track full of tips, tricks, and insights to help you make the best beer possible, including important considerations for your raw ingredients like water, malt, hops, yeast, and other adjuncts.

  • Yeast quality and health
  • An overview of the malting process, including barley varieties, why high-quality malting is important to homebrewers, and how different types of malt created
  • Experimenting with “strange” ingredients and flavor combinations
  • Brewing water, including filtration
  • Hop thiols
  • Using enzymes in homebrewing
  • A data-centered approach to designing award-winning beers
  • Diacetyl: What it is, why it happens, how to avoid it, and testing for Vicinal Diketones (VDKs)
  • Hopping rates, schedule, and strategy in IPAs, including an interactive comparison
  • Fermentation temperatures and where they really matter
  • Barrels: Selecting and caring for barrels, types of beers that work in a barrel, and how to fill, empty, and store them
  • Decoction mashing
  • Hands-on flavor training

Beyond Beer – Sessions focused on any non-beer fermentation including mead, cider, sake, koji, and more. including (but not limited to) mead, cider, sake, perry, cheese, bread, kimchi, etc.

  • Polish meads
  • How to make root beer, birch beer, and/or other sodas
  • Advanced mead making
  • The basics of getting into mead making
  • An introduction to winemaking for homebrewers 
  • How New Zealanders distill at home
  • How to start making cider
  • Fermented foods

Clubs & Competitions – This track covers a wide range of topics involved with running homebrew clubs and organizing or competing in homebrew competitions.

  • Succession planning for homebrew clubs; How to set your club up for long-term success during times of leadership transition
  • How to prevent club member burn-out
  • Club engagement and activities
  • Collaborating between clubs
  • Different types of clubs
  • Logistics for starting your first club competition
  • Interfacing with the BJCP and how to find sponsors and judges 
  • Club Only Competition (COCs)
  • Running a successful competition of any size
  • Marketing and promoting your competition

Homebrewing Culture – A wide variety of subjects awaits conference attendees in this category, including topics on homebrewing trends, the rich history of beer and brewing, and how to make your homebrewing hobby into a career.

  • History vs. folklore; urban legends about specific beer styles
  • A modern history of homebrewing
  • Homebrewing and Diversity, Equity, Inclusion and Accessibility (DEIA)
  • How to take your homebrewing to the next level; going pro
  • The relationship between commercial brewers and the homebrewing community
  • The latest trends in homebrewing
  • Women in homebrewing, including building the confidence to enter competitions and achieve certifications

New to Homebrewing – Sessions geared towards new homebrewers or attendees interested in learning how to homebrew.

  • Brew day efficiency for the beginner
  • Brewing for competitions; going from brewing for friends to brewing for judges
  • The top ways to improve your beer quality
  • Making the leap from dry malt extract brewing (DME) to all grain brewing
  • Making your own recipes and how to modify recipes
  • New to Homebrewing in 2022: Changes in homebrewing techniques, equipment, and ingredients