One of our favorite Craft Beer brewers on the market is Devils Backbone – that has an enormous presence across Virginia and permeating further. From upper tier fast food joints, nice restaurants, to large festivals, the varying brews emanating from DB are consistently a favorite among consumers, let alone ourselves.
We were happy to catch up with their CEO Steve Crandall about his life in Nelson County and all things Devils Backbone. Steve really did an excellent job expounding on the mentality, and mission statements behind the Devils Backbone model.
On the brew model itself, Devils Backbone Brewmaster Jason Oliver expanded on some of his thoughts on incorporating other styles into their mixes, and what is up and coming.
My fathers side of the family come from Wales and northern England so I naturally feel an affinity for the UK. But I also feel an affinity for the beer. My first brewing job was at the Wharf Rat / Oliver’s Breweries ltd in Baltimore and we brewed exclusively English-style ales using an English brewing system with open fermentation, the notorious Ringwood yeast, and English malt & hops. Much of my career had been specifically focused on Germanic brewing so it is nice to come back to ones roots. Expect to see the American Amber Ale I brewed with Adnams to be re-brewed at Basecamp as well as other UK inspired ales. Also, upon my return DB will start it’s cask ale program.
Wondering where that catchy name came from? Interesting story that Steve said we were absolutely not allowed to speak about on-air. Apparently, the land where the brewery was built upon was the staging ground for a rather acute military battle that took place during the mid ’80’s. I can’t say too much more, but it involved guitars and Ralph Macchio. I’m just saying what Steve told us in confidence! I am not sure I believe him either, but I certainly am not willing to call the man out on this.