December 21, 2021

Meet The Member: Notch Brewing

by joeyphoenix

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Interviewee: Rob Hughes (he/him)

Tell us a bit about you and why you do what you do? Share your passions for your business, initiative, organization.

Beer enhances our times together, session beer extends them. We like good times. We like lingering in the biergarten for a few hours, or around the fire pit with friends, or at the beach with our kids, and we all like to get home safely and feel ready to go the next morning. Notch is a promise. A promise that the flavor will never fatigue and always invite you back for another sip, another beer, another story.

Session beer is born of workers’ beer, where refreshment and taste were equally important. It slaked the thirst of laborers while they plowed the fields, mined for coal, fired blast furnaces and forged steel. When water was tainted, session beer saved civilization. It’s 4.5% ABV and lower; difficult to brew and a pleasure to drink. Every great beer brewing nation makes and enjoys session beer, and the U.S. is no exception.

What role do you think your business plays in supporting a more creative community? OR your community in general. (Bonus! Why do you think a more creative community is important?)

Providing a venue for creatives to showcase their work as well as providing them a haven to share a few beers and stories.

What was the last book you read or film you watched that made an impact on you?

The Beer Bible

What’s the one thing people would be surprised to learn about you our your business?

Currently, Notch is the only brewer in North America to employ the historic brewing process of pitch lining lagering barrels. “Pitch” is a combination of tree resin and paraffin, and in the Czech Republic, it was used to coat wooden brewing vessels previous to the use of metal. This ensured the beer was protected from the negative influences of tannin and oak extracted from the wood, and instead resulted in the pitch character making its way into the flavor and aroma of the beer.

So, we set out on this labor of love project to recreate a process long lost to modern technique, and to discover what this pitch character was all about. For Pitch Lined Pils, we employed traditional Czech brewing methods of double decoction, open fermentation, natural carbonation, and extended lagering times (four months) in pitch lined wooden lagering barrels in our Salem brewery.




Creative Collective’s 2021 #StayLocal Campaign

Initiative encourages community to shop small and support local small businesses this November and December

It’s time for #StayLocal2021 – follow the hashtag for the best of local eats, drinks, experiences, and shopping North of Boston.

The approaching Holiday season is putting people in the shopping, eating, and drinking mood as small businesses across the North Shore are gearing up for the busiest time of the year. Following up the successful 2020 #StayLocal campaign, Creative Collective is launching #StayLocal2021, encouraging individuals to shop and support small this upcoming holiday season. Learn more.


Notch Brewing

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Brewing session beer since before it was cool. Launched in 2010, Notch Brewing – named for the nick made to keep a record when you’re having more than one – was the first brewing company in the U.S. to focus exclusively on session beer. At the time, we simply wanted to brew the beers we loved to drink because finding