Dr. Tim Lawson is a Professor and the Chairperson of the Psychology Department at the Mount. In His Free Time, He is Also a Talented Beer Brewer!

tim lawson in group photo holding his award-winning beer

Cincinnati is known nationally for many things like our Cincinnati-style chili, the Cincinnati Reds, and the Cincinnati Bengals. Did you know that Cincinnati is also a hidden gem for beer? Cincinnati is ranked as the third-highest city with the most breweries per capita coming in just behind Portland and Denver! Based on the MLB 2021 beer sales, the Cincinnati Reds were ranked as the third-highest beer-drinking fan base in the league. Based on the NFL 2021 beer sales, the Cincinnati Bengals were ranked the number one beer-drinking fan base in the entire organization. I think it is safe to say Cincinnatians love their beer!

Here at the Mount, we are lucky to have an extremely distinguished faculty member among us who is also very talented at beer brewing. Dr. Tim Lawson is a Professor and the Chairperson of the Department of Psychology. He is an award-winning teacher and scholar, a two-time published book author, and has published dozens of research studies in professional journals. While being incredibly involved in the Psychology Department he also makes time for a hobby of his, beer brewing, he even teaches a beer brewing course at the Mount during the summer semester!



Read below for more on Dr. Tim Lawson’s beer brewing journey!


1. When did you first start brewing your own beer?

 I started brewing all-grain beer about 10 years ago.


2. What sparked your interest in this hobby?

I enjoy craft beers, and I wanted to really educate myself about different beer styles and how they are made.  Homebrewing provided the perfect opportunity to not only learn more about beer styles and brewing, it also allowed me to brew beers, experiment with different recipes, and tailor my beers to my preferences.


3. What did this hobby look like when you first started compared to now?

Researchers know a lot more about beer brewing today than 10 years ago, and I’ve learned a lot along the way as well.  Today I know much more about how to adjust water chemistry, brew lager beers, and avoid off-flavors. 


4. What is your home brewing process?

As with professional brewing, I mix warm water with the grains to create a “mash,” which converts the starches in the grains to sugars that yeast consumes.  I then drain the liquid from the mash (it’s called wort) into my brewing kettle, boil the wort with hops, cool it down with a copper coil, and then pitch yeast into it.  It ferments for about 10-14 days, and then I keg it. 


5. Briefly describe the beer brewing class you teach at the Mount.

The course teaches students about all of the steps involved in beer brewing, the ingredients, and about a variety of beer styles.  Students get to brew beer, sample different beer styles, and develop their own beer recipes.


6. What connection do you have with West Side Brewing in Westwood?

Kurtis Remmel, one of the owners of West Side Brewing, took our brewing course the first year we offered it, and that inspired him to start up a brewery.  Since then, he has been visiting our brewing course and allowing our students to small batches of beer at West Side Brewery.


7. Briefly describe the Samuel Adams Taproom competition you competed in in the spring and the awards you won.

The homebrew competition is sponsored by the Cincinnati Malt Infusers homebrew club.  It’s called the All American Homebrew Competition.  They accepted about 250 beers of various styles.  My German Pilsner won Best of Show (i.e., the best of 250 beers), and that’s the beer I’ll be brewing at Samuel Adams Taproom in August.  I also won medals for my Imperial Brown Ale with Coffee, Milk Stout, and Doppelbock. 


8. What local breweries do you currently have your beers featured at and which beers?

My Belgian Dark Strong Ale is still available at Third Eye Brewing Company.  It’s named Dark Sorcery.  You can also find it on tap at BC’s Bottle Lodge in Montgomery.