Critical Brewing Equipment – Towels

Now I know that most of you have a set of towels that you keep handy for Brew Day. You almost have to. Between boilovers, leaky sample jars, overfilled bottles, and spilled beers, a good table Zamboni is about the most important tool in your collection. As with so much of my equipment, I prefer to have a dedicated set just for brewing. That way I have full control over how they are treated, including selecting, cleaning, and stashing in convenient locations so there is always one close by when a spill occurs.

A nice neat stack of brewing towels next to a cold beer.

Over the years, I have built up an assortment of odd towels from a variety of sources. Check them out! As you can see, I prefer hand towels. Hopefully it doesn’t get to the point where you need a beach towel (what a mess!), and you can keep a small one in your pocket at all times for all sorts of minor things.

Mammoth Towels
I am a huge fan of the Colorado Mammoth, and you can see that I have picked up some towels from going to the games. As a season ticket holder, I get out there a lot, so these towels end up being the backbone of my towel fleet.

Denver Sports Team Towels
I also like to keep around any towels I pick up from my other local sports teams. In this case, the Denver Nuggets and Colorado Rockies have made runs into the playoffs in recent years. The Nuggets towel I picked up at a home playoff game. As it happens, Rockies towels were much harder to come by, and that one was given to me by a friend who was lucky enough to get a ticket.

Green Bay Packer towel from Lambeau Field
Ahh, the Green Bay Packers. I am not a huge football fan, but I am not afraid to catch a game once in awhile. On a business trip to Chicago a year or so ago, I had the opportunity to move my flight to the Saturday before my meeting started. Of course, I took advantage of this and drove the rental car up to the Holiest Patch Of Grass On Earth, Lambeau Field. While I ended up there during breast cancer awareness month, which is why the towel is pink, instead of yellow, it’s still a pretty cool item to have around. I rather enjoy having it in the collection.

Sierra Nevada Brewing Towel
And finally, the flagship of the fleet. The Sierra Nevada Brewery towel. I picked this one up at, of all places, the Bonaroo music festival. I attended in 2011 to do a presentation at the “Broo’ers” Festival (read “Brewer’s” Festival) where I gave a talk about beer styles, process, and homebrewing. It was the first time I had done a beer talk on that scale, and turned out to be a fun experience, even though we were overrun by a bunch of Rooers who had been in the 100 degree heat for too long and just wanted some free beer. After the talk, the rep from Sierra Nevada gave me the towel.

Next time you brew, have some towels around. But even if you make a mess and don’t have a towel around to clean it up, the Nutty Brewer will never say “I told you so.”

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