Northern Virginia breweries Beltway Brewing Co. and Water’s End Brewery will release a beer on Saturday to raise money for local medical workers. It’s aptly called PPE, an acronym for People Performing under Extreme conditions. The breweries are donating $6 from every $18 six-pack to the Inova COVID-19 Emergency Preparedness Fund. Since opening pre-sales a week ago, the breweries have contributed $9,000.
When Water’s End closed their Lake Ridge taproom and pivoted to pick-up in mid-March, one thing was clear, says co-owner Zach Motes: There were not enough supplies to protect healthcare workers.
Looking for a way to give back, the breweries—who’ve been working together in Beltway’s Sterling brewing space as Water’s End prepares to expand—approached Inova. The Northern Virginia hospital system was responsive to the idea of creating a beer benefiting healthcare workers, and the brewers collaborated on the recipe. The result: A hoppy West Coast-style IPA with notes of citrus and pine.
Mote says the focus of the beer is more important than the beer itself—just take a look at the can. Designed by Brad Keppler of Red Leader Studios, the wraparound design features medical workers in scrubs and masks posing heroically. Drawing from his own experience as a police officer, Motes put himself in the shoes of first responders.
“When you’re out there doing the dirty work, you don’t necessarily feel like you’re heroic or making a difference or doing anything besides your job,” says Mote. “So it’s sort of our duty to give them the recognition they deserve.”