Narragansett Beer releases commemorative pale ale
Winter brew salutes World War II Battleship USS Massachusetts
Providence, R.I.-based Narragansett Beer announced the release of Big Mamie Indestructible American Pale Ale, a sessionable ale that pays homage to the USS Massachusetts. The release commemorates the 50th anniversary of maritime museum Battleship Cove and Narragansett’s own efforts to save the impenetrable warship many years ago, the company says.
Recognized in American history for firing both the first and last U.S. Navy sixteen-inch shells during World War II, the USS Massachusetts, otherwise known as “Big Mamie,” served the country for many years. However, despite the ship’s history, in 1964, it was on its way to the scrap yard to be stripped of its parts.. With the ship’s past and New England pride in mind, Narragansett Beer spearheaded a fundraising drive to save the ship from destruction 50 years ago. Thanks in part to ’Gansett’s charitable efforts, in 1965 Big Mamie made a victorious return through Narragansett Bay to the Fall River, Massachusetts waterfront where a half-million fans welcomed the ship home. The vessel remains docked there today as part of America’s Fleet Museum at Battleship Cove.
“My mom first took me to visit Battleship Cove in November of 1972," said Mark Hellendrung, president of Narragansett Beer, in a statement. “I was only 4 years old then, but the pictures from the deck of the ship are in my family photo album and are very meaningful to me. Now, I drive by Battleship Cove and look down onto the fleet every day on my trip to and from the ’Gansett offices. Knowing what Big Mamie truly represents and learning more about Narragansett’s role in rallying New England to help preserve such an important part of American history – it’s something that hits me, even if only for a second during my drive every day. I’ve come to learn that my wife’s grandfather served in the US Pacific Fleet with Big Mamie in WWII, and this release is our way of honoring him and every brave American who has fought for our country – it’s our way of remembering that our safety and freedom has been built and protected by generations of selfless servicemen and women.”
Brad King, executive director of Battleship Cove, added: “Narragansett is a historical and iconic beer and 50 years ago they stepped up and said ‘Hi Neighbor’ to support the saving of another historical icon – Big Mamie – the USS Massachusetts. It was a great partnership then, and 50 years later it’s a great partnership again. I cannot think of a better way to celebrate such teamwork than with the coming together of high-quality ingredients to make a beer worthy of Big Mamie and her crew.”
Brewed under the supervision of Narragansett Beer Head Brewmaster Sean Larkin, the winter sessionable is made with U.S. Pale, Cara Belge, Vienna and Special B malts, and is carefully balanced with U.S. Chinook hops, the company says. To achieve an American finish, the beer then is dry hopped with U.S. Liberty for a crisp and bright taste, it adds.
Available during the winter, Big Mamie Indestructible American Pale Ale comes in six-packs of 16-ounce tallboy cans at a suggested retail price between $8.99 and $9.99. The beer is 4.5 percent alcohol by volume and 30 international bitter units (IBUs). Big Mamie Indestructible American Pale Ale will be distributed throughout New England; New York; New Jersey; Pennsylvania; Delaware; Washington, D.C.; Maryland; North Carolina; Florida; Portland, Ore.; and Nashville and Chattanooga, Tenn. The timing and availability will vary in each market.
To honor the launch of this battleship brew, Narragansett Beer will host a release party on Veterans Day, Nov. 11 at The Cove Restaurant on the waterfront in Fall River, Massachusetts. Just down the road from Big Mamie herself, guests are invited to take the first sip of this iconic collaboration that pays homage to the historic battleship.