In the beginning
During the dawn of micro-brewing in the Bay Area, Roger Lind stepped into a former Dodge factory in San Leandro, CA, and started Lind Brewing Company, which would later become Drake's Brewing. Lind was a brewer at Triple Rock in Berkeley, one of the first brewpubs in America, and set off on his own to brew draft-only English-style ales.
The original brewery
Lind constructed a 15 Barrel brewing system using repurposed dairy steel and several “Grundy” tanks imported from England during the 1980s. The gravity fed brewing system was hand made, and it served not only as the brewing system, but as a symbol of hard work and adaptability.
We've never taken ourselves too seriously, from the day the brewery was founded.
The Founder Departs
Roger Lind sold the brewery to a local coffee company, which continued to brew Drake's beer.
Bottled Six-Packs Arrive
It's hard to believe, but Drake's beer wasn't available in six-packs until the year 2000, when maritime artwork inspired by Sir Francis Drake still adorned our bottles. Shortly thereafter, all references and images related to the sea captain were removed. Drake's Brewing is now named for our feathered friends, mallard ducks, also known as a "drake."
Drake's IPA Wins Gold at GABF
We've developed a reputation for brewing fantastic IPAs, and Drake's IPA winning gold at the Great American Beer Festival was just the beginning. It was the first of six total GABF medals we've won to date.
Hold On To Your Head
After three weeks in the tanks and one minor incident involving a pressure relief valve jettisoning across the cellar and nearly decapitating a brewer, Denogginizer Double IPA was born. It's now one of our best-selling beers.
A New Era
John Martin and his business partner, Roy Kirkorian, purchased the brewery. Over the ensuing 10 years, they've expanded brewing capacity, distribution, and started producing West Coast style ales using an abundance of high quality hops and malt. Drake’s beer is distributed throughout California and has become a house hold name in the state’s brewing community.
Barrel House Opens
Drake’s Barrel House opened at our San Leandro brewery to serve as the tasting room and retail home of the company. Hundreds of wine and spirit barrels adorn the walls. A wide variety of Drake’s beer can be sampled and purchased, including year-round releases, experimental batches, and barrel-aged beers. The Barrel House also offers food from our Brew! Kitchen.
Drake’s Dealership opened in downtown Oakland, inside the shell of a former Dodge Dealership and repair shop. The beer garden and full service restaurant was built largely of repurposed wood and steel from the existing structure. In a short time, the Dealership has become renowned for its excellent food menu, featuring locally sourced, farm fresh, and seasonal ingredients. Fresh beer is served from 32 taps or can be purchased to-go.
Brewhouse & Cellar Expansion
A new 60-barrel brewhouse and fermentation tanks to match, boosted our brewing capacity, ensuring more people could find and enjoy Drake's beer.
Our First Can
Originally launched in bottles as a summer seasonal in 2016, Kick Back IPA became the first Drake's beer in can.
A New Community Gathering Spot
Drake’s opens the BARN, featuring food, beverages, and entertainment, along the river in West Sacramento, CA. The two acre landmark location includes the PizzaSmith restaurant, YO?LO! Food Truck, a 400 seat beer garden, outdoor bar, and fire pits. The venue will host a wide array of community events, from craft fairs to music concerts.
Barrel-Aging Program Wins Gold
Our most recent gold medal win at the Great American Beer Festival was brought home by our Advanced Oak team for Santa's Brass, a barleywine aged in whiskey and port barrels.
New Bottling Line
We capped off a big year by firing up a new bottling line, allowing us to ship more beer to customers. It can fill 40 bottles at one time.