About - THE HISTORY OF THE HARDEST-WORKING BEER IN THE FRIDGE

In 1981, Redhook founders, Gordon Bowker and Paul Shipman, had a revolutionary vision that all beer drinkers deserved something different than the flavorless lagers or stale imports that were available at the time. Using second-hand and makeshift equipment they opened the Redhook Ale Brewery inside a renovated transmission shop in Ballard, Seattle.

Four decades later and the beer scene, just like our hometown of Seattle, looks very different. And though a lot has changed, we are still driven by our founder's original vision to make well-crafted, approachable beers for the people. Over the years the recipes may have changed, but the spirit of entrepreneurship and work-ethic still underlies everything we do in our pursuit of making the hardest-working beer in the fridge.

1981  Bowker And  Shipman
1981

Gordon Bowker and Paul Shipman establish Redhook Brewery in an old Ballard transmission shop with the goal of brewing Seattle a better beer.

1981  Bowker And  Shipman
1982  First  Keg
1982

The first Redhook Ale ever is poured at the classic Seattle pub in Queen Anne, Jake O’Shaughnessy’s. The initial beer had a fruity taste and quickly gained a cult following as “Banana Beer.”

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1984

Winterhook, Redhook’s legendary winter ale is first brewed. Crafted with an evolving mix of malts and hops, Winterhook has been brewed annually since this date.

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Ballard Bitter
1985

Ballard Bitter is first released. Paying homage to the Scandinavian history of Seattle’s Ballard neighborhood, Ballard Bitter’s hoppy profile becomes a hit with craft beer fans. Ya Sure, Ya Betcha!

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1986

Redhook Extra Special Bitter, a former Winterhook recipe, is released. Brewed continuously to this day, Redhook ESB plants a stake in the ground for the Seattle craft beer movement, and inspires a new wave of craft beers across the country.

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1987  Trolleyman  Pub
1987

Redhook outgrows the Ballard brewery and moves to Fremont, inhabiting an historic building that served as a barn for trolley cars up until the 1940’s. To honor that heritage, new pub is christened the Trolleyman.

1991
1991

The Fremont brewery expands production from 40,000 to 75,000 barrels to serve the growing craft beer market.

1991
1994  Woodinville  Site
1994

To meet increasing demand from thirsty beer lovers, Redhook opens a state-of-the-art 250,000 barrel brewery located in the heart of scenic Woodinville, WA.

1996  Portsmouth Brewery
1996

Redhook opens a sister brewery in Portsmouth, NH to better serve Redhook beer fans on the eastern seaboard. Redhook is the first craft brewery to have bicoastal breweries.

1996  Portsmouth Brewery
Long Hammer
1997

Redhook IPA, aka Long Hammer IPA, is first released. Tracing its heritage from another Redhook classic beer, Ballard Bitter, Long Hammer IPA continues on to this day as a go-to West-Coast IPA.

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2010

Redhook partners with University of Washington as the official craft beer of Husky Athletics.

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2016  Motorworks
2017

Redhook celebrates 35 years as a craft brewing pioneer and opens a new brewery and pub in Seattle’s Capitol Hill neighborhood.

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2017

Redhook releases Big Ballard Imperial IPA - an 8.6% ABV tribute to our original stomping grounds in Ballard, Seattle

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2021

Redhook Releases Storm Surge Hazy IPA - a West-Coast Style Hazy IPA

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2021

Redhook Releases Hazy Big Ballard Imperial IPA, marking the first extension of the Big Ballard brand family.

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2022

Redhook launches Lagersquatch Lager and finally adds the elusive lager to the portfolio.

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2022

Redhook releases Tropical Big Ballard Juicy IPA, marking the second Big Ballard extension and the member that truly made us a Big Ballard family.

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2022

Redhook Brewlab celebrates its 5th Anniversary & welcomes Chef Shota Nakajima and Kobo to the space.