A couple years ago, the world learned that the White House kitchen staff was brewing its own beer at the behest of President Obama. We reported on that story in 2012 (read it). Sam Kass, a chef at the White House and the Senior Policy Adviser for Healthy Food Initiatives, is the one who’s actually been brewing the beer.
Today we learned that to show appreciation of the White House’s interest in homebrewing, the American Homebrewers Association has gifted President Obama and Chef Kass with lifetime memberships. Below is the press release from the AHA.
American Homebrewers Association Gives Gift Membership to President Obama for the Holidays
—Recognition Also Bestowed Upon Departing White House Chef Sam Kass—
Boulder, CO • December 17, 2014 – ‘Tis the season of giving…and brewing! This holiday season, in recognition of their support and participation in the popular American hobby of homebrewing, the American Homebrewers Association (AHA) has extended special lifetime gift memberships to President Obama—the first president to brew beer in the White House—and outgoing White House chef Sam Kass.
Though beer has long been part of the country’s history and traditions, Obama made history when, as president, he purchased a homebrewing kit and then—alongside chef Kass—spearheaded the effort to brew White House Honey Ale, the first beer known to have been brewed in the White House. The brew’s recipe, written by Kass, can be viewed here.
“Homebrewing is a model example of a bipartisan, pro-community and pro-business activity that all kinds of people can be passionate about and enjoy. President Obama and chef Kass are among the nation’s 1.2 million homebrewers, which include both Republicans and Democrats,” said Gary Glass, director, American Homebrewers Association. “What better way to honor their enthusiasm for the hobby than to give them a lifetime membership to our community, which consists of many leaders, patriots and successful craft beer entrepreneurs.”
Kass—personal chef to the Obama family, as well as Executive Director of the First Lady’s Let’s Move! Initiative and Senior Policy Advisor for Nutrition Policy—announced in December he will be stepping down at the end of the month.
“As chef Kass finishes his tenure at the White House, we hope his AHA membership will allow him to stay engaged in the hobby. After Kass’ exit, we look forward to seeing President Obama continue to brew beer from the most famous and important home in the world,” added Glass. “We thank them for their willingness to experiment with and share their delicious brew recipes with the country.”
President Obama and chef Kass were mailed the letters below from Glass on behalf of the organization.
To President Obama:
Dear Mr. President:
As one of the nation’s 1.2 million homebrewers, we would be honored to provide you a complimentary lifetime membership to the American Homebrewers Association (AHA), an organization dedicated to promoting the country’s ever-growing community of homebrewers.
Since its founding in 1978, the AHA has worked to educate Americans about the country’s longstanding tradition of homebrewing. Your participation in homebrewing has elevated national awareness for the hobby and has inspired the country’s homebrewers, many of whom have become successful craft beer entrepreneurs.
We thought this membership, which we have also given to chef Sam Kass as he completes his tenure at the White House, would be a fitting and timely holiday gift. Homebrewing is an activity that everybody—regardless of their background or politics—can bond over and enjoy. As part of your holiday celebrations this year, we hope you will brew a batch of the White House Honey Ale or Honey Porter, the brews that have drawn such great national attention to our favorite hobby.
We look forward to you becoming a member of the American Homebrewers Association.
Happy holidays, and cheers to homebrewing.
To chef Kass:
Dear Chef Kass:
As you complete your tenure at the White House, we wanted to send a thank-you gift for all the contributions you have made to the country, and, in particular, to the advancement of our favorite hobby: homebrewing.
We would be honored to provide you a complimentary lifetime membership to the American Homebrewers Association (AHA), an organization dedicated to promoting the country’s ever-growing community of homebrewers.
Since its founding in 1978, the AHA has worked to educate Americans about the country’s longstanding tradition of homebrewing. Your enthusiasm for the craft, and your initiative in experimenting with and sharing the White House’s delicious homebrew recipes have been wonderful—and we are deeply grateful.
We thought this membership, which we have also given to President Obama, would be a fitting gift for the holidays. As part of your holiday celebrations this year, we hope you will brew a batch of the White House Honey Ale or Honey Porter, the brews that have drawn such great national attention to our favorite hobby.
We look forward to you becoming a member of the American Homebrewers Association. We hope this membership will allow you to continue to engage in the hobby as you embark on your next endeavor.