It was a full day today for the Brew Hampshire team. This morning we met up with JT Thompson, minister of propaganda for Smuttynose Brewing Company, at their Heritage Avenue location in Portsmouth, NH. The building was briefly the home of the Frank Jones Brewing Company before it went bankrupt and the assets were acquired at auction by Smuttynose founder Peter Egelston. Peter was generous enough to sit down with us for a lengthy interview and shared with us the wisdom that comes from twenty years in the craft brewing game.
After that, JT took us on a tour of the facility and explained the many ways that they’ve modified and expanded the Frank Jones property to fit their growing needs, including dropping 2000 gallon fermenters in through the ceiling with cranes. But now, after years of planning, Smuttynose is about to move into their new home in Hampton, NH— a state of the art, environmentally-friendly facility on Towle Farm. JT brought us over to the new location after a quick lunch and showed us their brand new bottling line and massive tanks. He then sat down for a formal interview and told us about his roles in the New Hampshire beer scene— his position at Smuttynose, being vice president of the Granite State Brewers Association, and his work with the Brew New Hampshire program.
Such a productive day could not have been achieved without the help of our friend and sometimes gaffer, Brian Daigle. The highlight of his day (and ours) was enjoying a freshly bottled Old Brown Dog right off the bottling line, pre-label.