|Courtesy of Redhook Brewery
Born at the original Redhook Brewery in Seattle’s Ballard neighborhood in 1983, Blackhook Porter has been a favorite of dark beer fans ever since. While Blackhook has been brewed on and off again for more than three decades, this year’s release marks the first time in years that the beer will be available nationally in bottles and on draught.
|Rick Buchanan checking temps - Courtesy of Redhook Brewery
Blackhook Porter returns with a bold new label inspired by heritage Redhook beers, designed to pay tribute to Redhook’s history and strong Seattle roots. Blackhook is the first release in an updated series of three seasonal beers that Redhook will brew in the coming year, and the first beer in the brewery’s portfolio to feature the revamped heritage labels.
“Blackhook is one of the quintessential Redhook beers that helped change our direction as a craft brewery in Seattle in the early 80s,” said Nick Crandall, lead innovation brewer for Redhook Brewery. “After the original Redhook Ale, which many remember as ‘Banana Beer’ was released, the brewers were asked to create a second, better beer, and Blackhook was the answer.”
With the goal of creating something different for the brewery’s second release in 1983, Redhook’s brewers ditched the banana esters of the Redhook Ale and introduced dark roast malt characters and a cleaner yeast character to create Blackhook. The beer earned a reputation for converting dark beer skeptics into dark beer fans, and its popularity helped pave the way for a variety of other Redhook classics like ESB and Winterhook.
Many local beer lovers have fond memories of Blackhook. Manny Chao, local brewer and co-founder of Seattle’s Georgetown Brewing Company reminisces about his first Blackhook in 1991. “I remember I was a student at UW and Blackhook Porter was the first beer I fell in love with. It changed my life… and my liver,” said Chao.
|Brian Milbreath-Murphys Pub Wallingford - Courtsey of Redhook Brewery
Blackhook has a rich malty backbone with caramel sweetness that compliments the smooth roasted malt character that creates a well-balanced porter. A revival of the traditional London-style, top-fermented porter, Blackhook’s roasted malts deliver coffee and chocolate characteristics balanced with hoppy bitterness.
“The velvety texture and smooth finish make Blackhook a favorite of dark beer fans,” said Crandall. “It’s also a fantastic beer to pair with dessert. Blackhook porter float, anyone?”
Blackhook hits shelves nationally in 12-ounce bottles this month and will be available in six packs, 12-packs and as part of Redhook’s “Foursome” variety 12 pack. The beer is also available on draught.
Check out the Redhook beer finder to locate some Blackhook near you. 5.2% ABV, 36 IBU. Redhook.com/find-beer
Redhook was born out of the energy and spirit of the early 1980s in the heart of Seattle. While the term didn’t exist at the time, Redhook became one of America’s first craft breweries with its focus on creating “better beers.” From a modest start in a former transmission shop in the Seattle neighborhood of Ballard to a Fremont trolley barn that housed The Trolleyman brewpub, to its current breweries in Woodinville, Wash., and Portsmouth, N.H., Redhook has become one of America’s most recognized craft breweries. Redhook will open a 10-barrel brewpub in the Capitol Hill neighborhood of Seattle in the fall of 2016.
While Redhook has “grown up” over the past 30 years, one thing has never changed — Redhook is still brewing great beers like ESB, Long Hammer IPA, Audible Pale Ale and a variety of seasonal beers. Most importantly, Redhook has fun doing it. Redhook beers are available on draught and in bottles and cans around the country. For more information, visit www.redhook.com.
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