By: Harpoon Brewery Published:
It all started with friendship and a shared love of beer. The only thing missing was a choice of quality beer and a great beer culture. So three friends/beer lovers took it into their own hands, hired a brewer, and brewed the beer they wanted to drink. It was deeper in color, fuller in flavor, higher in quality, and nothing like anyone in Boston had tasted. That was 30 years ago, and the beginning of the craft beer revolution. Things have changed quite a bit since then, but some things remain the same: quality matters and being passionate about the beer you drink matters. But above all, sharing great beer with friends matters most.
We've packed a lot in over the past 30 years. Think you know us pretty well? Prove it!
1. Harpoon Ale was Harpoon’s first beer brewed. What was our 2nd year-round beer?
2. When was the first Harpoon Festival held and which one was it?
3. What was the name of Harpoon’s first brewer?
4. What year did Harpoon become employee owned?
5. What year was Harpoon IPA introduced?
6. What was the original tap handle for UFO made from?
7. What is the name of the silhouetted man on the original Harpoon Ale label?
8. When Harpoon started brewing in 1986, how many breweries were in the US?
9. What was the name of our original delivery vehicle that had no side mirrors and occasionally caught on fire?
10. How many bottle caps are on the wall above the stairs?
So, how did you do?!
- Harpoon Golden Lager
- Harpoon Octoberfest in Boston in 1990
- Russ Heissner
- 1993 as a summer seasonal
- A painted chair leg
- Henry the Harpooner
- Black Van of Death
By: Bill Davidson, Driver, Harpoon Distributing Company (HDC) Road Crew Published:
Our friends at Web Industries, a fellow ESOP company, shared with us their “Ideas System,” a program for harnessing ideas for improving company performance from each and every employee. The reason behind the Ideas System made a lot of sense: every employee naturally has ideas every day about how to make his or her job easier, better, more efficient.
When we saw the Ideas system in action, we saw employees who were engaged, excited, and enthusiastic. It was obvious from these meetings just how much power there is in having every employee in the company striving for its improvement. And we knew then that this program was something we had to do at Harpoon.
At Harpoon, work teams have always met frequently and shared ideas for improving performance and making employees’ jobs easier, better, more streamlined. Since becoming employee-owned, we formalized this system to make the most of those ideas and celebrate the contributions of our fellow owners. Ideas that get put into practice are showcased on the Ideas Wall in the brewery. This month's employee owner feature comes from the Harpoon Distributing Company Road Crew where Bill Davidson made a small suggestion with huge benefits…
Name: Bill Davidson
Title and Department: Driver, Harpoon Distributing Company (HDC) Road Crew
Idea: Two-wheelers are the Road Crew’s best friends. We use them all day, every day as they make delivering kegs and cases of beer so much easier. We were constantly breaking them on the road which was a huge headache. We had to either head back to the brewery to pick up another one or keep extra two-wheelers on the truck with us. Both were pretty bad options. Driving back to the brewery, mid delivery, meant we were using more gas and taking longer to complete our routes. Keeping an extra two-wheeler on the truck meant there was a little less space for beer and we were potentially taking a well-functioning two-wheeler from someone who needed it. My idea was to add a toolkit on every delivery truck, that way we’d be able to repair broken two-wheelers on the road.
Benefit: Since we’ve added these toolkits, we’ve saved on gas money and are able to work more efficiently (time = money!).
Favorite Beer: Harpoon IPA and 100 Barrel Series #55: Thunder Foam (Bill was one of the brewers!)