Big News at Fullsteam Brewery

Ever drink an Abita Amber?  Or a Turbodog?  How about a Purple Haze?  Well, those are all beers that my good buddy Brooks Hamaker formulated and brewed down in Abita Springs, Louisiana for the iconic Abita Brewing Company.  Brooks was with Abita at its inception and helped grow the brewery into the South’s leading producer of craft beer.

And now he’s coming to North Carolina to join the crew at Durham’s Fullsteam Brewery as its Head of Operations.  Brooks will initially focus on  helping to move and install Fullsteam’s brewhouse to the new brewpad. He’ll work with brewer Chris Davis to help fine-tune the brewing system and scale brewery operations in anticipation of a spring launch.

Needless to say, I’m incredibly excited for Fullsteam, which will be opening in the spring, producing its fantastic Southern agricultural beers.  I’m also excited for founder Sean Lilly Wilson, who now has the perfect operations guy to help run the show.  But in the end, I’m excited for me, as one of my best friends in the world is relocating from New Orleans to Durham, and I’ll get to drink his beer.

Brooks isn’t just a brewer; he’s a food writer, too, who has appeared in many regional and national publications.  Of course, we were both on the managerial staff of the eGullet Culinary Society. recently appointed Brooks to the Salon Kitchen Cabinet, where he serves as the online magazine’s resident beer expert.  And hell, he even dates a Beard Award-winning chef.

And I will be writing about the construction of the Fullsteam Brewery in the coming weeks.  There’s a lot of work to be done, but now that Brooks Hamaker is onboard, I see nothing but smooth sailing — and drinking — ahead.  Welcome to the Triangle, Brooksie!


11 Responses to Big News at Fullsteam Brewery

  1. Chad says:

    Oh Hell Yeah! That’s great news, both for Fullsteam and the Triangle. Really looking forward to having Brooks in town.

  2. David Williams says:

    Great news for Durham, The Triangle and North Carolina.

    Cheers to Sean and to those who appreciate local artisan beverages and food!

  3. docsconz says:

    Bummer for New Orleans!

  4. John Zurovchak says:

    Dean – Jerry introduced me to Abita beers when he was living in LaPlace, LA for many years. Over the years we have seen Abita expand to specialty shops here in Ohio and I absolutely LOVE Purple Haze. Glad to hear that you not only get a good friend – but that you will also be getting good beers to from now on! (I hope this does NOT effect the quality of the Purple Haze and Abita Amber that I so love!).

  5. Dana says:


  6. Mit says:

    Indeed great news for us. Drinking Abita beers was one of the highlights of my Louisiana business travels – before they were available here in NC.

    Yay for you – and close friendships and congratulations to Jerry & FullSteam.

  7. PTuorto says:

    Turbo dog is a great brew, also good for cooking with. Stoked to have so many fine breweries around RDU. Dean, i was hoping you may consider adding my newly launched food blog to your local’s list, I live in Cary, work in Raleigh and hope to use the blog as a source for great food and drinks in the area. Thanks!

  8. I am SO SUPER stoked! Welcome to the neighborhood! You looking for any good beer-brewing chemists to join your team? I know one! Let me know…and keep me posted. I can’t wait to write about Fullsteam. Also Paul – welcome to the blogging world! There’s a few of us here in the Triangle – I’ve got you RSS feed. Come check us out at Zomppa too!

  9. Morgan says:

    This is the main reason I read varmintbites.cmo. Shocking posts.

  10. Thanh says:

    Great tsuff. varrmintbites.ocm deserves an oscar.

  11. goorhoofe says:

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