As a rule, “rancid” is not a term you want associated with something you’re about to put in your mouth. But Ska Brewing Co.’s upcoming Brewstomper Golden Ale might be the exception.
The collaboration came about as a result of Ska marketing folks Kristen Muraro and Arlo Grammatica working their way backstage at the Scallywag! festival where Ska was selling beer and met Cameron Collins of Brew Ha Ha productions.
“Rancid is one of the most iconic punk bands ever, and you take a brewery like Ska Brewing and you put it together, it’s kind of a no-brainer,” Collins said in an interview with The Durango Herald. “Ska Brewing, Rancid? There’s not a better pairing.”
“They make great beer, and they‘ve got that Do-(expletive)-Yourselves ethos that’s woven into all of our DNA,” Rancid bassist Matt Freeman said in a news release.
The crew at Ska leapt at the opportunity. Already, its beers Rue B. Soho and Hoperation Ivy are named after “Ruby Soho,” one of Rancid’s hits, and Operation Ivy, Freeman and Rancid singer/guitarist Tim Armstrong’s previous band.
“It’s kind of serendipity because I’ve been a superfan of Rancid and Operation Ivy basically since before we ever started the brewery,” said Ska Brewing President Dave Thibodeau.
“When I listen to it now, it brings me back to the days of filling out all our licensing paperwork and everything before we ever opened up.”
Fond memories, in fact, played a large part in the brewing and design of Brewstomper.
“They (Rancid) wanted the whole thing – the beer, the label, everything – to kind of evoke a sense of nostalgia for back in the days when old punk rockers were drinking cheap beer,” he said.
Armstrong designed the can label, which features the logo from the band’s second album, “Let’s Go,” as well as some other allusions.
“The yellow is a little similar maybe to a well-known light American lager brewed on a mass scale,” Thibodeau said.
The beer itself is a 5% ABV golden ale to which the brewers added a little bit of Mandarina Bavaria hops, which have a tangerine-like citrus aroma, he said. The hops will not heavily influence the flavor, but “there might be a little bit of citrus in the nose.”
“We drink a lot of our Mexican Logger, a lot of Steamworks’ Kölsch. We’ve always wanted a beer like a Kölsch, and this is similar to that,” he said.
Brewstomper will be released on tap at Ska’s headquarters in Durango and in cans throughout Ska’s markets around the same time it debuts at the festival.
Brewstomper will be the featured beer at the Bash festival, which hits six cities after Phoenix this summer and will include, in addition to headliners Rancid, Pennywise, The Mighty Mighty BossTones and L7.