How to Home Brew Beer in the QCA

Have you ever had any interest in home brewing? It is a hobby that is booming in popularity right now and the Quad Cities has a plethora of options for those interested, from the novice to the expert.

There are 3 home brew clubs in the QCA, each offering members a different experience, each meeting one Sunday a month.


MUGZ, or The Mississippi Unquenchable Grail Zymurgists, is the biggest and oldest club in the area and meets the last Sunday of each month at a different local brewery. It is a great place to start if you are new to home brewing or just want other home brewers in the Quad Cities. MUGZ is also involved with several judging events and festivals in the region. Learn more about the club and keep track of where the next meeting is on their website.

REFSREFS, or Rivers Edge Fermentation Society, created a few years back by several MUGZ members who wanted a bit more of an advanced meeting, though they welcome all those interested in well-crafted brews to visit their meetings, ask questions, and learn from one another. REFS has several Certified Beer Judges and is the force behind the annual home brew fest, Festiv-Ale, held in July every year. REFS meetings take place the third Sunday of every month, upstairs at Blue Cat Brew Pub. Learn more about the club on their website.

10993439_929603900405746_2834958053673902582_nThe Powder Keggers is the newest home brew club in the QCA, and it’s for women only. Several of the female members from MUGZ as well as REFS come together the first Sunday of every month, typically at Front Street Brewery, to learn about making beer, wine, and meads in a supportive, encouraging environment. Each meeting has a different theme with samples and snacks provided. Follow them on Facebook here to keep track of their upcoming meetings.


Now, if perhaps you’d like a more classroom-like setting, you can also always sign up for a class at ManCave Brewniversity. Local home brewer, Jason Gabriel, started his own business inspired by his many years of brewing at home. He now gives classes on many different subjects all with the goal to teach attendants how to brew great beer at home. Check out all he has to offer on his webpage.

10155404_679658892091547_193425949_nIf you are already up and running and are looking to purchase supplies to brew at home, the Quad Cites is home to 2 great shops. Camp McClellan Cellars at 2302 East 11th Street in the Village of East Davenport and UBrew in at 1525 3rd Avenue in downtown Moline are both owned and operated by two incredibly knowledgeable and helpful brewers.


There are many local resources in the QC that can help you pick up a new hobby or fine tune your skills in the vast world of home brewing.



About the author

Deborah Davis Deborah Davis, otherwise known as QCAlegirl, was born and raised in Davenport, Iowa, where she currently resides. A self-proclaimed craft beer fanatic, she spends her days either working at a local nano-brewery or researching and writing for her blog, While she’s not traveling around the Midwest in search of new experiences, she also enjoys yoga, reading, and spending time with her friends and family.

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