In 1983-84 when Don Webb, the Brewmaster and owner of Naked City Brewery in Seattle, Washington, and I were just of legal drinking age and both living in Southern California, we didn’t know each other. However we shared the same musical interests and we would frequent the same clubs in Hollywood and nearby cities and it’s a given that we were probably attending the same shows. The music we were consuming back then was Punk Rock and it’s close tie to New Wave, both just coming off the collective hangover of disco that was dying out. Back then punk scratched an itch for early 20 somethings with pent-up frustrations that were unleashed in the mosh pit where it wasn’t uncommon to be patching up your bloody nose in the broken glass, graffiti riddled restroom before heading out and doing it all over again. Courage!
Seeing bands like X, the Plimsouls, Lone Justice and Los Lobos at the Whiskey a-Go-Go, the Roxy, and the Troubadour; we felt we were seeing something new, that no one had seen before the epicenter for a lot of new music, here and New York.
Flash forward to the Summer or 2015 in Portland, Oregon where Don Webb and I are sitting around a picnic table outside the Little Red Shed at the Edgefield enjoying beers together and a conversation starts. We talk music and beer and it then becomes apparent that we have shared musical history and a kinship develops and an idea and then a beer is born.
The one beer that held the thread and tied us together was Hamms. Yes, the beer from the “Land of Sky Blue Waters.” My first beer at a high school party was Hamms in the can (that’s right cans) and Don remembers growing up in Southern California where Hamms was in his family’s refrigerator as it was his Dad’s favorite beer.
We decided to keep this collaboration simple and brew an American lager. Brewed with flaked rice and corn at a mere 4.8% ABV this embodies the beer that Don and I cut our palates on with a shared historical significance. The brew day was fun with Seattle brewers stopping by. Tomas BBQ’ed up lunch and the beer and laughs were flowing. As part of Seattle Beer Week we will release “The Beer Refreshing” with a kick-off event during “Barleywood Squares” at Naked City Saturday, May 10th. See you then.