About Keystone Homebrew Supply

Keystone Homebrew Supply has been providing quality beer and wine making supplies and expert advice since 1992. A thriving community of dedicated local homebrewers and winemakers has helped us to develop Keystone into a rapidly expanding two-store operation (including an amazing, one-of-a-kind 23,000 square foot facility in Montgomeryville). We believe our staff at both locations is what really sets us apart, however. Our mission is to provide a fun and educational experience for local brewers and winemakers, and superior selection and service for all of our customers. Everyone here is passionate about what we do, and we have well over 100 years of combined experience in the hobby. Here is a little background:

Jason Harris

Owner, Co-founder
Jason started the business in November of 1992 fresh out of college. His original goal was to use the experienced gained from running a homebrew shop to open a brewpub, but he is having way too much fun to ever give this up, and is proud to offer a truly unique experience for brewers and winemakers. Jason is a National Beer Judge in the Beer Judge Certification Program, has passed the wine tasting exam given by the Home Wine and Beer Trade Association, and has an advanced certificate from the Wine and Spirits Education Trust (WSET).

Makes: Beer, wine, mead, cider, soda…
Favorite styles of beer to brew: American Pale Ale
Craziest concoction: Watermelon beer
Brew system: Specialty grain/extract on my stovetop (who has time for all-grain anyway?)
Favorite commercial breweries: Anchor, Yards, Flying Fish, Troegs
Favorite wines: Pinot Noir, Sauvigon Blanc, and Nebbiolo

Judy Parsons

Manager, Bethlehem
With a degree in Dairy Science, Judy worked at a dairy farm near New Hope for almost ten years. Little did she realize how her life would change when she bought her husband a homebrew kit for Fathers’ Day. It wasn’t long before she started working for America U Brew. In August 1998, Judy came to work for Keystone, started all grain brewing, and began brewing with a computer-regulated RIMS system. Judy happily lives and brews with her husband Jim, daughter Brianna, son Colton, three Chesapeake Bay Retrievers, and five donkeys.

Makes: Wine, fruit wines, ciders, and beer
Favorite style of beer to brew: Hoppy Pale Ales, English Bitters
Craziest concoction: Raspberry Ginger Cyser
Brew system: Recirculation infusion mash system (RIMS)
Favorite commercial breweries: Hoegaarden, Dogfish Head, Samuel Smith’s, Fancy Pants
Favorite wines: Pinot Noir

Lou Balli

General Manager, Montgomeryville
A former New York investment banker, Lou has been the manager of our Montgomeryville store (a much more noble cause) since 2005. Lou enjoys experimenting with all kinds of fermentations, and rarely makes the same style twice. (Except porters. He makes a lot of porters.) He spends much of his time as a volunteer with the Worcester Fire Department, and shares excessive amounts of his beer with firefighters who would probably be just as happy with a “silver bullet.”

Makes: Beer, wine, mead and soda
Favorite styles of beer to brew: Porters, Stouts, English Bitters
Craziest concoction: Budweiser clone with an extra ¼ oz of Tettnang
Brew system: 15 gal Blichmann brew kettle & burner, 90 qt cooler with bazooka screen (for batch sparging), 60 ft copper immersion chiller, old scaffolding converted to brew sculpture
Favorite commercial breweries: Goose Island, Stone, Midnight Sun, New Belgium
Favorite wines: Barleywine

Justin Bost

Sultan of Sales, Montgomeryville
Before joining Keystone, Justin managed a local Blockbuster, where people used to talk to him a lot about deck chairs and the Titanic. (He usually gave them a quizzical look and told them the movie was overrated.) Alas, the Blockbuster sank, but Justin landed himself a cushy position here at Keystone. In his spare time, Justin bullies his friends into playing board games, hosts a late-night radio show, and shotguns beer from his 5 liter mini-kegs.

Makes: Beer, wine, cheese, mead, and “whatever comes out of an essential oil extractor”
Favorite styles of beer to brew: British Beers
Craziest concoction: Cool Ranch IPA
Brew sytstem: 48 qt cooler, 60 quart pot, Blichmann burner, Blichmann Therminator
Favorite commercial breweries: Yards, Duck-Rabbit, Founders
Favorite Wines: Still Champagne

Peter Lyon

Inventory Overlord, Montgomeryville
Peter left the thankless job of teaching History to middle schoolers to join the glamorous world of home beer and wine making. When he isn’t fermenting or discussing the historical impact of the First Crusade, you can find Peter cleaning his Golden Retriever’s fur off of everything he owns.

Makes: Beer, wine, cheese
Favorite styles of beer to brew: Stouts, Amber Ales, and experimental beers
Craziest concoction: Gin and Tonic Pale Ale, with juniper and lime zest
Brew system: Coleman cooler, propane burner, a 30 qt. pot and a lot of big dreams
Favorite commercial breweries: Brooklyn, Ommegang, Stoudt’s, Pabst
Favorite wines: Malbec, Rioja, Pinot Noir and Port

Salvatore Narisi

Shipping Czar, Montgomeryville
Sal came to Keystone with professional experience installing and servicing draft beer systems. He is a skilled winemaker, despite his surprising lack of proficiency with the Italian language, and he also makes magnificent meads. He even somehow finds time to brew beer in the face of the relentless demands of new home ownership.

Makes: Beer, Wine, Mead, Ciders, Soda
Favorite styles of beer to brew: Belgians, APAs, Amber Ales
Craziest Concoction: Pineapple Sage & Sorachi Ace Wheat, Mint Chocolate Milk Stout.
Brew System: 60qt Igloo cube cooler, 30qt Stainless pot & Propane burner.
Favorite Commercial Breweries: Yards, Ommegang, Rogue, Southern Tier
Favorite Wines: Syrah, Cabernet Sauvignon, Gewurtztraminer, Riesling.

Joshua Gaul

Bethlehem Sales Staff
Joshua has two fridges filled with about 150lbs of gracefully aging homemade cheeses (2-year old Cheddars, Romanos, and Swisses are his most prized). He has been brewing for more than 6 years, and can’t decide whether he prefers making beer or cheese. He enjoys gardening and preserving foods, and feeds his garden spent grains, hops, grape skins, seeds – pretty much everything he can’t get to ferment. He also ferments bread and pickles, and will soon be working on fermented sausages!

Makes: Cheese, beer, wine, cider, mead, soda
Favorite styles of beer to brew:
Belgians, ESBs, German Lagers, all styles
Craziest Concoction: Milk wine
Brew System: Started with a Zapap, now cooler and stove top
Favorite commercial breweries: Prefers to share homebrew
Favorite wines: Any wine that keeps his wife from drinking his beer

Jeremy Stork

Montgomeryville Sales Staff
Jeremy has been helping us here at Keystone since 2002. In that time he has made tasty homemade beverages of virtually every type imaginable, including beer, wine, cider, mead, soda and he has become quite proficient in extracting “essential oils”. He also enjoys making cheese and olives, and has even created a sourdough starter (for baking bread) using our White Labs Lactobacillus culture.

Makes: Ciders, wine, meads, cheese, beer, and whatever comes out of his essential oil extractor
Favorite style of beer to brew: Pale ales and stout
Craziest concoction: 33 pounds of Munton’s pale extract + 1 pound of Northern Brewer hops = one hell of a barleywine.
Brew system: Extract brewing in a 15-gallon stainless steel Polarware pot
Favorite commercial breweries: Founders, Yards, Duck Rabbit, Wild Goose (Damn you, Flying Dog – bring back the Snow Goose)
Favorite wines: Malbec, Pinot Noir, Syrah

Aaron Fournier

Beer Blogger (The Fermentation Proclamation)
Known for using crazy ingredients, Aaron loves brewing outside the box. Aaron’s “He Who has Risen” Belgian Strong Ale, brewed with communion wafers and holy water, took home the “Most Innovative” prize from the 2010 Sierra Nevada Homebrew Contest, and was named one of Joe Sixpack’s 6 favorite beers of Philly Beer Week 2010. He took home “Most Innovative” honors once again at the 2011 contest, with his wildly popular “Sausage Fest” (yes, a beer brewed with sausage). In addition to his rugged good looks and infinite charm, Aaron’s other claim to fame is his massive beer cellar (rumored to be visible from space).

Makes: Beer, wine, soda, cheese, soap, coffee
Favorite styles of beer to brew: Sours, Smoked Beers, Belgians
Craziest concoction: Sausage Rauchbier with actual sausage in the mash (although it’s kind of like picking the coldest ice cube)
Brew system: 20 quart for extract on the stove, or 60-quart pot for the burner on the porch
Favorite commercial breweries: Russian River, Lost Abbey, Deschutes, Troegs
Favorite wines: Strawberry, Port, Pinot Noir, anything Biodynamic

Mark Jenkins

Montgomeryville Sales Staff
Mark is a materials engineer who works out in the real world as a metallurgist. He likes to play hockey and has been known to chase a little white ball through the woods from time to time. He also has a garden at home, and enjoys making soup and grilling meats. Marks greatest aspiration in life is to keep his “honey-do” list as short as possible, so he can spend time with his wife brewing beer on their back patio.

Makes: Beer, Wine, Mead
Favorite styles of beer to brew: Spiced Christmas Beers, Refreshing Wheats, Anything with a Belgian Yeast
Craziest concoction: Frankenbrew (a theoretically elegant solution to having random ingredients laying around one’s brew space; Mark’s was less than stellar)
Brew system: 5 gallon all-grain
Favorite commercial breweries: Weyerbacher, Founders, 21st Amendment, Chimay
Favorite wines: Merlot and Malbec as “go-to’s” but nothing beats a great food and wine pairing

Dave Salaba

Winemaking Specialist, Montgomeryville
Dave has been making wine since 1978. He is a graduate of the University of California at Davis Winemaking Certificate Program, a graduate in microbiology from Purdue University, and a graduate of the Fermentation Technology Program at the Doemens Academy in Munich, Germany. Dave has worked as a winemaking consultant, authored articles that have appeared in publications such as Winemaker Magazine and the Journal of the American Wine Society and has also been on the faculty of Bucks County College, where he has taught courses in winemaking. He is active in many organizations, including the American Society for Microbiology, the American Society for Enology and Viticulture, and the American Wine Society. Dave enjoys entering winemaking competitions and over the years his wines have earned over one hundred sixty awards including Best Red Wine, Grand Champion Red Wine, Double Gold, Concordance Gold and Best in Show at various national and international competitions.

Makes: Wine
Favorite style of beer to drink: Russian Imperial Stout, Free Beer
Craziest concoction: 7-Up Wine
Winemaking system: Dedicated winemaking facility with assorted sizes Blichmann stainless steel conical fermentors; cooperage for aging red wines and stainless for aging whites; argon bottle purging system; dual Enolmatic bottle fillers; state-of-the-art laboratory for wine analysis.
Favorite commercial breweries: North Coast, Ayinger
Favorite wines: Petite Sirah, Syrah, Rhone blends

John Stecker

Montgomeryville Sales Staff
John has worked at Keystone since the beginning of time (or counting the rings in his brew kettle, about June 1995). He always seems to have a second career in the works, though, and has spent time as a radio show host, a professional brewer, and (currently) a filmmaker.

Makes: ciders, wine, meads, and especially beer
Favorite style of beer to brew:
American pale ales, Belgian ales, and just about everything under the sun
Craziest concoction: 14% ABV double bock (verging on triple bock), honey dunkel weizen double bock
Brew system: simple cooler system, once had a recirculation infusion mash system (RIMS), but is going back to basics
Favorite commercial breweries: Anderson Valley, Rogue, Ommegang, Lost Coast
Favorite wines: Shiraz

Ray Redcay

After 25 years of work with the Pennsylvania Liquor Control Board and 11 years of wine educating, Ray still brims with enthusiasm for wine and winemaking at our Bethlehem store. Ray loves beer too, and no doubt his master’s degree in engineering came in handy while building his brewing system.

Makes: IPA, Zinfandel
Favorite style of beer to brew: IPA
Craziest concoction: A Burton ale with 1 1/4 lb hops in a 5-gal. batch
Brew system: HERMIT system (a hybrid of HERMS and RIMS)
Favorite commercial breweries: Weyerbacher
Favorite wines: Quivria, Zinfandel

Keystone Homebrew Supply Joins RecycleBank
RecycleBank is the company that pays you to recycle your paper, plastic, glass, aluminum, tin, and other metals. It’s single-stream recycling: no need to separate glass, metals, plastic, or paper. Just sign up with RecycleBank, they pick up your recyclables, and you receive RecycleBank dollars redeemable at many retailers, now including Keystone Homebrew Supply. Check out www.recyclebank.com for more details. If you are already a Recycle Bank customer, come spend your RecycleBank dollars with us!

Former Keystone Employees