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USM's Luci Benedict to talk 'Chemistry of Brewing' at local beer event

Luci Benedict

NOTE: This story has been updated to reflect a change in date. The event, originally scheduled March 7, has been postponed to Wednesday, March 14 due to inclement weather.

Have you ever wondered how beer works? How does it go from the tank to your table?

Luci Benedict, associate professor of Chemistry at the University of Southern Maine, will present a talk on the Chemistry of Brewing on Wednesday, March 14, at Portland's Novare Res Bier Café. The talk is the first in a series of “It STEMs From Beer” lectures hosted by the establishment on various topics related to science, technology, engineering and math (STEM).

Benedict, who is also director of the Quality Control Collaboratory (QC2 lab) at USM, said her talk will focus on the science behind making beer.

“What I’m going to talk about is really diving into the basics of the science behind what you’re drinking,” she said. “Most people don’t think about how complex a beer is. It’s probably one of the most complex drinks people on average drink because it’s made with living things.”

While Benedict said she will focus her talk around basic beer brewing, she also hopes to talk about the development of New England-style India Pale Ales (IPAs), highly-hopped ales characterized by their hazy appearance.

The event takes place at Novare Res, 4 Canal Plaza, Portland, from 6-7 p.m.