Tom Jenkins, owner of Sonoma's Best cafe, store and deli, is proud to be offering 6-packs of local history this week.
One of his coolers is filled with New Albion Ale, brewed for the first time in 30 years by Samuel Adams.
"You know, the manufacturer of the original ale, John 'Jack' McAuliffe, gave birth to the U.S. craft beer movement right here on Eighth Street in Sonoma," Jenkins told Patch, looking out his window down that street.
McAuliffe was the founder of The New Albion Brewing Company, named after the appellation Sir Francis Drake was reported to have given San Francisco —New Albion.
"He started in 1976. Unfortunately he went out of business in 1982 because he couldn't get the funding he needed," Jenkins said. "Everyone who lived around here at that time still remembers him."
McAuliffe, a former Navy engineer, no longer lives in California. He has settled in Arkansas.
Jenkins said he was able to get 20 6-packs from a distributor recently. The ale is being offered nationwide, beginning this month. Jenkins said he likes how the bottles feature the original label.
"McAuliffe used to make his craft brews in a former agriculture shed. He sold everything he made but he couldn't get the financing to expand," Jenkins said.
McAuliffe is known for building his one-barrel style microbrewery from scratch, by scouring the area for scrap metal and equipment, according to this Mercury News article.
Jenkins said he's limiting his sales of the ale to one 6-pack per customer, "so that at least 20 Sonoma residents can enjoy a sip of the past."
"The funds are going to McAuliffe because he was in a bad traffic accident," he said.
McAuliffe lost the use of an arm in the accident and now lives with his sister.
McAuliffe was born in Venezuela, the son of an FBI agent stationed at the embassy in World War II, Jenkins said.
The craft brew pioneer made an appearance at Russian River Brewing Co. in Santa Rosa in 2011, as seen in this You Tube video. His original brewery sign is on display there. McAuliffe climbed a ladder to sign it during that appearance, as shown in the video.
TELL US: Do you remember Jack? We'd love to hear your recollections of those days. Let us know in the comments section below.