PORTSMOUTH—In Portsmouth, the name Frank Jones was once synonymous with beer. By 1882 Frank Jones Brewery was the largest ale producer in the country, brewing 150,000 barrels of ale that year. Today craft breweries across Portsmouth continue this great tradition and keep beer glasses full. To celebrate the 400th anniversary of European settlement in Portsmouth six of those breweries are taking part in Portsmouth on Tap, a history-inspired beer series, in partnership with the Portsmouth Historical Society.
Events are scheduled on select Thursdays throughout 2023 starting May 18 from 4–6 p.m. at Cisco Brewers. Subsequent events include June 22, 4–7 p.m. at Loaded Question Brewing Company; July 27, 5–7 p.m. at Great Rhythm Brewing Company; Sept. 28, 5–7 p.m. at Liars Bench Beer Co; Nov. 16, 5–7 p.m. at Earth Eagle Brewings; and Dec. 14, 5–7 p.m. at The Portsmouth Brewery.
Each brewery will craft a limited-edition beer inspired by an individual or event in Portsmouth history. Historic inspiration will be drawn from the life of Ona Judge, Seacoast Outright, the life of John Paul Jones, the Portsmouth Peace Treaty, the New Hampshire ride of Paul Revere, and the Portsmouth Fires.
"To collaborate with our brewery brethren and to comb through 400 years of Portsmouth living, to pluck out people and stories and moments and use those as our muses, allows us to not only honor our history but brew some as well," said Dagan Migirditch, co-founder of Liars Bench Beer Co.
The breweries have partnered with the Portsmouth Historical Society to provide historical games and entertainment. Trivia on more than 400 years of Portsmouth history will happen at select events. Old Time Slang games will leave you wondering if “rot gut” is an old-fashioned ailment or a forgotten term for beer.
“We are delighted to partner with Portsmouth breweries to bring history to life in an exciting and approachable way. We look forward to providing historical context, and a bit of fun, at these events as we celebrate Portsmouth’s 400th anniversary,” said Emma Stratton, Portsmouth Historical Society executive director.
Portsmouth on Tap events are free to attend. Beer is sold by the glass. Glasses, t-shirts, and koozies will be available for purchase at each event. Additional details surrounding Portsmouth on Tap can be found at https://portsmouthhistory.org/.