I’m as guilty of it as anyone. When I walk into a place like The Beer Junction, Beer Star, Chuck’s Hop Shop, or any other place with a long and rotating draft list, my attention gravitates towards new beers, or at least new-to-me beers. In that way, I am very much the model of a modern craft beer enthusiast.
I’ve heard it referred to as Beer Attention Deficit Disorder (BADD), a concept recently penned by Stephen Beaumont, a nationally recognized beer writer, but also used by other people such as me. Like a baby getting distracted by a jingly, shiny set of keys, many of today’s beer drinker are drawn compulsively towards anything new. We have replaced relaxing at the local pub with the thrill of the chase and the never ending quest to earn new badges and raise our scores on Untappd.
That’s cool, but there’s something to be said for the familiar. Sometimes beer is not part of an adventure. Sometimes it is like hanging out with your oldest friend. The one you’ve know for a long time. The one you trust the most. The one you do not judge. You just hang out and enjoy each other’s company.
With that, I would like to introduce the concept of Flagship February. The whole thing was conceived by the aforementioned Stephen Beaumont. #FlagshipFebruary is a way to celebrate and appreciate the beers that made beer great again. It’s a hashtag that everyone can use to show their appreciation for, and their consumption of, beloved beers. Not the newest or shiniest beer, but the beers that made beer great.
Flagship beers do not necessarily need to be legacy beers. Arguably, beers like Fremont Brewing’s Interurban IPA, Georgetown Brewing’s Manny’s Pale Ale, and Russian River’s Pliny the Elder qualify as flagship beers even though they gained popularity in this century.
So far, I know of two local, Washington pubs that plan to celebrate Flagship February. Beveridge Place Pub in West Seattle and The Red Hot in Tacoma. I don’t doubt there are others.
Starting today, Beveridge Place Pub will begin rotating legacy flagship beers into the draft list. They’ll start with perhaps the most-flagship of all flagship beers, Sierra Nevada Pale Ale. As tap space becomes available, expect other beers like Deschutes Black Butte Porter, Hale’s American Pale Ale, Pike Kilt Lifter, and Maritime Pacific Flagship Red to find their way into the mix, along with many others.
The Red Hot will have a series of events celebrating flagship beers from across the region. The Flagships of Bend, The Flagships of the Gorge, The Flagships of Fre-Lard, and so on. Follow along on Facebook to see what they’re up to.
If there are other bars celebrating #FlagshipFebruary, use the comments below to share what you know.