Sonoma County homebrewer Greg Haas is getting some attention for his “Bodega Bay Fog” recipe lately after San Leandro-based Williams Brewing, a well-known homebrew supply house, included it its “Customer Recipe Issue” of its seasonal catalog. It’s the first time since 1991 the company has included customer recipes in its catalog.

Greg’s recipe is for a 10 gallon batch of a California Common, the generic name for the style defined by Anchor’s Steam Beer, a historic name that the brewery trademarked way-back-when, when nobody expected craft brew to make a comeback.

“I’ve been working on that recipe for a number of years, mostly rooted in my want for hazy beers and am a big fan of Anchor Steam,” Greg tells me. “I adapted a clone to add some haze without messing with the crystal flavor and the hops – I’ve got to give credit to the originals.”

Williams founder Bill Moore said he decided to do a recipe issue to make the catalog even more entertaining to read (If you’re a homebrewer, you’ll know that the catalogs for Williams and its main competitors are pretty entertaining as they are, often reading more like magazines for brewing gearheads and ingredient fetishists than catalogs).

“I personally chose the recipes based on overall soundness of recipe, along with the strength of the accompanying story,” Moore said. ” It was a little tough because we received over 200 recipes from good customers, and could only fit 27 in. So I left out a lot of good mashed IPA recipes (because there were so many) in favor sometimes of the more obscure.”

Greg said he got into homebrewing when he lived in Alameda County and took the love with him when he moved to Alaska, and more recently back to the Bay Area.

“We moved to Bodega Bay in 2011 and had some friends who also wanted to get into the hobby,”  he said. “Helps that we live on the coast, great for friends and their families to beat the summer heat and its always great fermentation temperatures.”

Here’s the recipe, courtesy of both Greg and Williams Brewing:

  • 15 lbs two-row pale malt
  • 1.5 lbs wheat malt
  • 1.5 lbs 40L Crystal malt
  • 3/4 oz Magnum hops (added at 60 min)
  • 1 oz. Northern Brewer hops (25 min)
  • White Labs WLP810 S.F. Lager yeast (Greg makes a starter with this)

Mash for 1 hour at 151 degrees.

Ferment at 63 degrees. Greg reports the beer spends 18 days between the primary and secondary tanks.

Starting gravity should be 1.055 and final should be 1.013.

The full recipe – including handy Williams ordering codes for each ingredient and Greg’s short essay on the beer – is available in the fall catalog. You can request a free copy here.

 – Sean Scully