Hops Connect Cup Champions – Where Are They Now? – Dirk Slot
Hops Connect is a distributor of hops for breweries and home brewers in BC and across Canada. Every year they host a competition among university brew clubs to see which brews the best beer. Each year a brew club takes home the cup and a single brewer comes out on top with “Best In Show” and has their beer brewed at a BC Craft Brewery at scale. Now, several years into the competitions, we thought we would catch up to see where all the winners are today.
Name: Dirk Slot
University Home Brew Club: University of Victoria. UVic Wizards of Beer
Year of winning Hops Connect Cup : Never won the cup. Want to! We have one best in show twice though.
Name of winning beer: In 2014 my beer, a porter called Freyja Brau won. In 2015 one of our team members, Tim, won with SoPils
Style of winning beer: Porter and Pilsner. See above
- How did you get into home brewing?
Started with wanting to try out a beer kit. Didn’t like it as it tastes like it came out of a can, because it did! Made wine from whole fruit a few times in the meantime. Later, friends of mine kept telling me to make whole grain beer. What ended up happening was a good friend of mine at school told me about the local beer making group, “Brew Vic.” I went to an open house brew day, learned what was needed to make whole grain beer. Soon after, I adapted into a whole grain kettle system the equipment I had to deep fry turkeys with. The rest is history.
2. Tell us about the beer that you won the Hops Connect Cup with.
I had only made two or three batches before that time so I had just dialed in my system. I developed a few recipes, but this winning recipe was adapted from a friends recipe but had the hops changed to reflect the hops supplied by Hops Connect. Helping me out were members of our UVic team. When we sampled the wort we all nodded and my first words were, “We have a winner.”
3. What are you doing today?
I am working on finishing my undergrad in chemistry part time while working retail part time.
4. Do you still home brew? If so, tell us about your beers.
I still home brew. I find the whole process very interesting. I never make the same beer twice as there is so much to learn. Right now I am exploring wheat beer styles and different yeasts. Since I do not have temperature control, wheat beer works well in the summer. But as an experiment I made a Marzen style Pilsner 10 degrees Celsius too warm. It’s a hot boozy mess but I like it.
5. What is your favourite craft beer?
Hoyne Brewing’s “Dark Matter”
6. If you could have any job in the craft brewing industry what
would it be?
Tough one, I enjoy making beer but I also like talking about beer. A sales position at a smaller brewery where if they need me to help make beer in a dire all hands on deck situation would be pretty cool.
7. Where do you see yourself in 10 years?
Finally done school! Haha. But really, the dream would be to run my own craft brewery in the hills of northern Taiwan. It would be exciting to help expand craft beer there.