Founder’s daughter resurrecting New Albion brand

Renee DeLuca, daughter of craft brewing icon Jack McAuliffe, plans to resurrect his legendary New Albion Brewing brand.

DeLuca has a deal with Mendocino Brewing Co., located down the road from where New Albion started in Sonoma, Calif., to make New Albion beers. The will begin with the flagship pale ale. She expects to begin selling the beer before the end of the year.

McAuliffe constructed much of his brewery — the first purpose-built “microbrewery” — himself, opening it in 1976 and operating it until 1982. Mendocino bought, and still owns, some of that original equipment.

Earlier this year, Boston Beer Co. produced a one-time run of New Albion Pale Ale, with the profits all going to McAuliffe, who lives in Arkansas. “We … are happy that its legacy will be kept alive with the help of Jack McAuliffe’s daughter,” Boston Beer founder Jim Koch wrote in an email to the Santa Rosa Press Democract. “To see a new generation of craft drinkers enjoy New Albion Ale today pays great tribute to brewing pioneers, like Jack McAuliffe, who sparked the American craft brewing revolution.”

In “Ambitious Brew: The Story of American Beer” author Maureen Ogle put the importance of McAuliffe and New Albion Brewing in perspective. “I think what really matters about Jack,” Ogle told the Press Democrat, “is that he showed people, really ordinary people … that it was possible to build a brewery.”