Harpoon History from 2002 to 2006

2002: Brewery to Brewery ride
2002: New 120 barrel brewhouse
2003: 100 Barrel Series introduced
2003: First Harpoon Helps mission
2006: 100,000 annual barrel mark

2002: Harpoon Brewery to Brewery ride grows into cycling event

The Harpoon Brewery to Brewery ride is not your Sunday afternoon pedal around the neighborhood. It is a challenging, some might even say grueling, 148-mile single-day trek from our Boston brewery to our Windsor brewery.

The Brewery to Brewery Ride, or B2B, began as a small, invitation-only ride for a group of 50 or so cyclists. The core group was made up of Team Psycho members, a group of hard-core Boston triathletes. This group, who still ride the B2B to this day, charted out the first cycling route between the breweries.

Each year the ride benefits Team Psycho's Elite Development Program (EDP), the Jim Kenary Brain Tumor Research Fund, and the Harpoon Helps program.

Harpoon Brewery to Brewery ride

Brewery to Brewery Ride

2002: Harpoon installs new 120 barrel brewhouse in Boston

Even with the added brewing capacity at our new brewery in Windsor, Vermont, keeping up with the overwhelming thirst of Harpoon drinkers was proving difficult! In October of 2001 we began the installation of new brewing equipment in Boston. The new equipment included four brewing vessels ranging in size from 8.6 feet in diameter to 16.1 feet in diameter. The tanks were built by a German manufacturing company, Huppmann, and shipped to the US fully assembled in crates. The largest tank, the Lauter Tun, barely made it through the brewery doors!

The new additions doubled our brewing capacity, enabling us to get more beer out to the thirsty craft beer lovers anxiously awaiting their fresh pint of Harpoon!

The New Tanks in the Brewery

The New Tanks in the Brewery

Installing the 120 Barrel Brewhouse, Doubling Capacity

Installing the 120 Barrel Brewhouse, Doubling Capacity

2003: The 100 Barrel Series is introduced

In June of 2003 we debuted our new line of limited batch specialty beers, the Harpoon 100 Barrel Series.

The 100 Barrel Series celebrates the brewing talents and creativity of a single Harpoon brewer. From experimental styles to interpretations of old favorites, the 100BBL is a limited batch that is a personal expression of the art of brewing. Every couple of months a different Harpoon brewer will spend a few late nights in the brewery, brewing test batches on the pilot system. This leads to the final recipe and, of course, a special, unique beer.

Not only has the 100 Barrel Series been an opportunity for our brewers to flex their brewing muscles, it ensures another rare and delicious offering for all of us here at the brewery. The first beer in the series was an Oatmeal Stout brewed by Harpoon's Chief Brewing Officer Al Marzi. Many years and dozens of offerings later, the Series has put forth unique styles such as a Danish farmhouse ale, a wheat wine, a framboise, an oyster stout, a wet hop ale, a saison, a helles, and the list goes on...

100 Barrel Series introduced

Enjoying the 100 Barrel Series: Oatmeal Stout

2003: The first Harpoon Helps mission takes place - Greater Boston Food Bank

Back in 2001 we invited Friends of Harpoon to help us as volunteers at our very first 5-Miler road race, which raises money for the Angel Fund and ALS research. The response from Friends of Harpoon was overwhelming. That got us thinking...we have a great group of beer lovers that enjoy getting out there and doing something good for their community. So why not make this volunteering a regular thing?

And so it was. The first Harpoon Helps “mission” took place in March of 2003 at the Greater Boston Food Bank. Nearly 100 volunteers came out to help us sort food at the Food Bank on that inaugural Harpoon Helps mission.

The signature Harpoon Helps event is called Harpoon Helps Spread Holiday Cheer, which takes place annually in December. Through this event we decorate community organizations for the holidays that could use some extra cheer for the season. Hundreds of volunteers now join us decorate dozens of shelters and community centers up and down the east coast - and in Texas!

Harpoon Helps is something that we're very proud of here at the brewery. Other than brewing great beer, being a good neighbor ranks high on our “To Do” list. Not only is it good for us here at the brewery to get out there and volunteer, but it has been very rewarding to see just how many beer lovers there are that also want to do something good for their community.

Harpoon Helps

Harpooners Helping the Community

Harpoon Helps

Harpooners at the Greater Boston Food Bank

2006: Annual production passes the 100,000 barrels mark

In a national beer market that exceeds 200,000,000 barrels, it is hard to imagine that Harpoon could produce any amount of beer that seemed “big”. Hitting 100,000 barrels, however, was awesome. HUGE! Especially for Harpoon, when the memories of brewing a fraction of that amount were in the not very distant past.

We all felt a great sense of achievement and pride. Even for the Harpooners who do not work directly in production, there was a very real sense that we all had contributed in some way to this accomplishment. On the walls of the brewery, there's a framed photo of a glass of IPA and glass of UFO Hefeweizen, with “We did it! 100,000 Barrels 2006” written below. It was a great milestone.

Annual Production Passes the 100,000 Barrel Mark

Annual Production Passes the 100,000 Barrel Mark

Annual Production Passes the 100,000 Barrel Mark. We did it

We did it!