Anchor Brewing Blog

Explore the origins and history of the craft beer movement in America.

Craft Beer History

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anchor steam artist label paul madonna

Introducing a Limited-Edition Anchor Steam® Artist Label for Summer

In collaboration with award-winning local artist Paul Madonna, Anchor Steam is now clad in a special limited-edition label throughout the entire summer that pays homage to the city’s artistic heritage. The Anchor Steam® Artist Label is an upward view of the iconic Golden Gate Bridge beneath overcast skies — the quintessential summer climate that San… read entire article

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Under the Crown: Anchor in Pop Culture

Anchor historian Dave Burkhart brings us interesting tales of Anchor’s past, guided by the factoids printed on the underside of Anchor Steam Beer crowns Under every Anchor Steam® Beer crown (we brewers call bottle caps crowns) is a little piece of Anchor lore. Each represents anywhere from ounces to tons of research, and there are… read entire article

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Under The Crown: A Brewery is Saved

Anchor Historian Dave Burkhart brings us interesting tales of Anchor’s past, guided by the factoids printed on the underside of Anchor Steam Beer crowns.  Under every Anchor Steam Beer crown (we brewers call bottle caps crowns) is a little piece of Anchor lore. Each represents anywhere from ounces to tons of research, and there are over 200 different… read entire article

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Under the Crown: A Brewery is Born

Anchor Historian Dave Burkhart brings us interesting tales of Anchor’s past, guided by the factoids printed on the underside of Anchor Steam Beer crowns.  Under every Anchor Steam Beer crown (we brewers call bottle caps crowns) is a little piece of Anchor lore. Each represents anywhere from ounces to tons of research, and there are over 200… read entire article

Sumerian Beer Project

Originally written in ____, Anchor historian Dave Burkhart recounts the details of a unique project to re-create an ancient method of brewing. The historical roots of beer brewing are entwined with those of early bread baking; this is well known to every serious brewer. In 1988, we at the Anchor Brewing Company conceived the idea… read entire article

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Made in San Francisco Since 1896: A Beer-iversary at Anchor Brewing

By Dave Burkhart, Anchor Historian Much of San Francisco—and Anchor Brewing—history was lost in the 1906 SF Earthquake and Fire. However, a few great resources remain, including old newspapers and city directories. When Fritz Maytag bought the Brewery in 1965, one of the first things he did was go to the San Francisco Public Library,… read entire article

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Celebrating the 50th Anniversary of the American Craft Beer Revolution

Every day, all of us at Anchor Brewing are charged with an important responsibility. In addition to the daily duties involved with creating and maintaining our growing portfolio of handcrafted beers, we are tasked with the stewardship of a truly iconic brand: Anchor Steam® beer. The ever-evolving task is to usher Anchor Steam into the memories and palates of today’s… read entire article

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Only More So Women of the California Gold Rush

By Dave Burkhart, Anchor’s Design & Graphics Production Manager and Brewery Historian “California, noted Wallace Stegner, is like the rest of the United States—only more so.”–Kevin StarrMost of the books written about the ’49ers might as well be called Men of the Gold Rush. Men of California, Men Who Made San Francisco, California: Men and… read entire article

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Beyond the Bottle: Craft Beer in Cans

Bob Brewer looks at the growing trend of packaging craft beer in cans. Beer in cans has been around for a long time. Starting shortly after the repeal of prohibition, American breweries began experimenting with the idea as a way to replace the glass bottle as the primary package for beer – a concept fully endorsed by… read entire article

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Lager: The Most Popular Beer on the Planet

Bob Brewer looks at the history and evolution of lager, the most popular beer style on the planet. Many of us who inhabit the craft corner of today’s American brewing industry, myself included, have at times tended to dismiss the vastly greater and hugely popular pale lager style of beer. As of early 2014, the… read entire article

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What’s Wrong with this Picture?

Brewery Historian Dave Burkhart and Brewery Loyalist Melba Moeck on Anchor’s “Earthquake Beer” A few months ago we received this nice email from longtime Anchor fan Melba Moeck: After the 1989 earthquake Anchor Brewing bottled beer with upside-down labels. If someone at Anchor Brewing is interested in a six-pack of these unopened bottles that could… read entire article

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IN THE ROOM
THE STORY OF ANCHOR IPA

By Dave Burkhart, Anchor’s Design and Graphics Production Manager and Brewery Historian Every Anchor brew begins with a story, a raison d’être. Without that story the recipe would be just a recipe and the label just a label. The story of Anchor IPA™, like the stories of Anchor California Lager® and Anchor Steam® Beer, has… read entire article

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Craft Originals: Mark Carpenter on America’s First Craft-Brewed Beers

No other brewery in America can claim the number of “firsts” that are part of the brewing heritage here at Anchor Brewing Company. To celebrate our history of innovation, we’ve created the Craft Originals 12-pack, a collection of America’s first craft-brewed beers. Each Craft Originals 12-pack features four legendary brews together in one package for… read entire article

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BREWS & BASEBALL CIRCA 1909
COLLECTING SF SEALS BASEBALL CARDS
FOR ANCHOR BREWING

Anchor Brewing historian Dave Burkhart on the story of Anchor Brewing’s baseball-card collection. How many employees can say that the owner of their company was keeping track of their EBay purchases? And how many of those employees can say that the owner was concerned that they might not be buying enough old baseball cards with… read entire article

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Brews & Baseball in San Francisco

 Anchor Marketing Manager Daniel Cruz writes about the connection between hand-crafted beer and America’s pastime in the City by the Bay and beyond. A few weeks ago I had a good day at work. A fellow marketing manager asked if I would be interested in writing a blog post from the marketing perspective, a first… read entire article

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What’s in a Name?
Fort Ross Farmhouse Ale

The History of Northern California is Never More Than a Tank of Gas Away Anchor historian Dave Burkhart on the story behind Zymaster No. 4. How did Fort Ross, a nineteenth-century Russian fur-trading colony ninety miles north of San Francisco, become the name of the latest release in our Zymaster® Series? The answer is in… read entire article

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The Season for Saison: The Story of Farmhouse Ale

Farmhouse ale, or “saison,” as it is now more commonly known, originated in Wallonia, which is the French-speaking part of Belgium. The style is historical and has strong artisanal roots, having been brewed in a distinct region for several hundred years by individual farmers rather than by commercial breweries. Belgian saisons were traditionally brewed by… read entire article

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Why Beer Matters
A Handmade Book About Handmade Beer

With Anchor historian Dave Burkhart and guest blogger David Johnston Mark Sarigianis contacted me last year with the hope that Anchor might be able to help David Johnston and his Sharp Teeth Press with the publication of Evan Rail’s extraordinary essay on Why Beer Matters. I was already familiar with Rail’s Good Beer Guide to… read entire article

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Steam Beer Billy – Part III

In this three-part series, Anchor historian Dave Burkhart recounts the true tale of a man, a goat, and their beer—not bock, as one might expect, but steam beer—in nineteenth-century San Francisco.   When we last heard from our heroes, Yankee Sullivan and his pet goat Jack were incarcerated, recovering from their steam-beer-induced New Year’s revelry.… read entire article

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