The Hop Grenade’s roots date back to 2005, the year a fresh-faced San Francisco State University graduate named Justin Crossley fell in love with homebrewing. Armed with a big personality, a communications degree, a love of talk radio, and a passion for craft beer, he took what was the only logical course of action: He converted the garage in his rented house into a radio studio, assembled a ragtag band of beer nerds, and founded The Brewing Network.
In a time when the word “podcast” was known to almost no one, The BN's original show, The Sunday Session, became an instant hit. Homebrewers and craft beer lovers are a passionate bunch, and they soaked up The BN's broadcasts like the information-hungry sponges that they are.
As the years went on, The BN’s audience and the US craft beer scene grew. More shows were added to the Network. Video and live streaming content were integrated. Festivals and conventions were hosted and attended in force. Good times were had. And eventually, it became clear that the next step for The BN, which by then had become synonymous with its listener-submitted hop grenade logo, was to curate and pour great craft beer for the public. Justin and his producer, Scott Moskowitz, hatched a plan and pitched it to private investors.
The first Hop Grenade location, in San Francisco's East Bay, chose itself. Concord was home to The BN from show one, so its beautiful downtown was the perfect place to open a contemporary taproom and bottle shop. The doors opened in July 2014 to an enthusiastic public, and has since gone on to become one of the premier craft beer destinations in the nation. With 21 constantly rotating taps, hundreds of bottles, and The BN's studio located inside, you won't find a better place to quaff a beer and rub elbows with your favorite brewmaster.
...Unless, of course, you live in Colorado. Perhaps then you have indeed found a better place to enjoy world class craft beer – Hop Grenade Fort Collins! The hunt for the second location began in 2016, first with a solicitation of The BN's audience. The Brewcasters asked the BN Army to write in and make the case for why The Hop Grenade should come to their city. Many compelling submissions were received, and dozens of great cities were visited and considered. In the end, Fort Collins emerged as the top contender, with an already famous and robust craft brewing scene, a beer-savvy populace, and breathtaking natural beauty.
And now, here we are, The Hop Grenade and you, dear patron, enjoying the journey and this destination for our beloved brand. We thank you for taking an interest in our story, supporting our vision to continue elevating craft beer's profile, and enjoying whatever great brew is currently sitting in front of you.