Narragansett. What a fun beer brand to say. The ‘Gansett for short. Narragansett is a costal town in Washington County, Rhode Island, named after the descendants of the aboriginal people of the state — the Narragansett native Americans. The beer brand has a long history in the area. Narragansett Brewing Co. was founded in Cranston, Rhode Island, in 1890, and according to the video above, the company was one the first large-scale breweries in America. In 1944, the brand made history as the first alcohol company to officially sponsor an American sports team (a 32-year partnership with the Boston Red Sox). And hey, who can forget that appearance in Jaws?
Like many regional heavyweights, Narragansett went out of business in the 1980s, but it was revived in 2005 by a team of local Rhode Island investors led by former juice executive Mark Hellendrung. Today, the classic regional lager house has been revamped as an indie brewery, and in 2020, the brand celebrated 130 years overall, distinctly marked by a 15-year rebirth. That rebirth was completed in May 2021, as Narragansett opened its long-awaited Providence, Rhode Island, brewery.
All of this info is wonderfully summarized in the video above. The mini movie is also a case study, showcasing the ProBrew fermenters and bright tanks that Narragansett installed. Based in Waukesha, Wisconsin, ProBrew is a supplier of brewery and beverage processing equipment. The company makes all types of beer iron from entire brewhouses to focuses on vessels, carbonation, filling and packaging. It’s worked with everyone from Sam Adams to Coca-Cola, and its services are explained in the video.
For Narragansett, ProBrew supplied 300 bbls of conical fermentation space and two “gorgeous” lagering tanks (a 20 and 40 bbl). After being a lager company for decades, the company is now set to expand its portfolio further with New England double IPAs, sours, fruited beers and ever onward. Just watch the video above. It’ll fill you in. It’s a great showcase piece, and it gives a great look at the equipment and engineering behind the scenes — from how to construct piping and access hoses to quick looks at tank ports that are perfect for adding ingredients. Watch above, or enjoy some outtakes below.
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