Who is the Brewer’s Daughter?

by Renee on September 13, 2010

So who is the Brewer’s Daughter? I’m Renée M. DeLuca, daughter of pioneer brewer Jack McAuliffe, founder of the New Albion Brewing Company in Sonoma, California. I found Jack somewhat late in life, and my road to meeting the man whose blood runs through my veins is a somewhat long and convoluted tale. I’ll save that for another day. In the meantime, I’ll tell you that learning I was of the McAuliffe clan has been an awakening in my life. I’d long had an affinity for all things Irish, including good beer. But once I discovered those things were a part of my true identity, I began delving deeper into their meaning.


When I first became aware that my father was quite renowned in the world of craft brewing, I laughed and reacted by saying, I always knew there was beer in my blood! At that point in our reunion story it was a funny aside. Some years ago, somewhere in cyberspace at an online forum for readers and writers, I bumped into Maureen Ogle, a historian researching the story of beer in America. When I casually mentioned to her that Jack was my father, she became very interested–Jack had slipped under the radar since his years in the California beer business, and most folks in the industry didn’t know what had become of him. I told her I was happy to put them in touch.

That random meeting on the World Wide Web led to a chapter in Maureen’s book, Ambitious Brew: The Story of American Beer, featuring the tale of Jack McAuliffe and his failed, but important brewery. Since the publication of Maureen’s book, Jack’s story has come to light in the beer community, and at last he has been lauded for his endeavors in the early days of microbrewing.

You can read more about Jack’s part in beer history in this Washington Post article.  And right now, you can pick up some of Jack and Ken’s Ale, a black barleywine ale made by the Sierra Nevada Brewing Company, honoring Jack with a special label. You can watch a video about the making of that brew, featuring Jack, at the Sierra Nevada website.

So where does that put me, the Brewer’s Daughter? My interest in beer, brewing, microbreweries and the history and future of the industry bring me to writing this blog. I’ll post about such things as I find and reflect upon them, I’ll do a little taste testing, share some recipes, and tell more of my story about how I came to find Jack in my life. I hope we’ll get to know each other a bit along the way, much like two strangers who find a common interest at the local brew pub. Pull up a barstool. Slainte!


J September 13, 2010 at 6:55 pm

Welcome to the blogosphere.


Alienna September 14, 2010 at 12:52 am

Huzzah! What better than good blogs and beer? 🙂

Renee September 14, 2010 at 11:35 am

Thanks, Ali and J.

Polly September 14, 2010 at 2:36 pm

Way to go Renee! This is going to be so much fun!

Renee September 14, 2010 at 2:37 pm

Thanks, Polly, I’m having fun with it 🙂

jacqui September 18, 2010 at 2:28 pm

hey renee, how interesting! i will be following you.

Another Renee September 13, 2015 at 10:46 am

Wow. How things have changed since then! Not only is New Albion back on the map, but how many friendships have been made in these last 5 years? It’s crazy to think that it all started with a few passionate beer bloggers! Slainte!

Renee September 18, 2015 at 11:03 am

It’s been quite a journey!

Comments on this entry are closed.

{ 2 trackbacks }

Next post: