It’s May, so we’re celebrating Asian American and Pacific Islander Heritage Month with beer, both local and international.

Locally, we’ve got a new release from DC’s Lost Generation Brewing Company called Tiger Spirit. The Belgian-style witbier is a collaborative effort, with partners Bluejacket; 50 Hertz Foods; and Kevin Tien, executive chef of Moon Rabbit and co-founder of Chef’s Stopping AAPI Hate. (Another Chef’s Stopping AAPI Hate co-founder, Tim Ma, hosted a beer dinner with us 11 years ago!)

Lost Generation is an AAPI woman-owned brewery, and co-owner Anne Choe and her partner, co-owner Jared Pulliam, are supporters of the AAPI community. As a nod to some of the classical flavors originating in dishes found within the community, Tiger Spirit is brewed with Tingly Sichuan peppercorns from Asian-American-owned 50 Hertz, coriander, citrus peel, and chrysanthemum tea. “We wanted to use common Asian ingredients to show how–despite not being common beer ingredients (particularly Sichuan peppercorns)–they can complement the beer and be the star all at the same time,” says Choe.

Jared Pulliam and Anne Choi
Jared Pulliam and Anne Choe, pic via Brandy Holder

In keeping with Lost Generation’s literary branding, the name Tiger Spirit is taken from Amy Tan’s The Joy Luck Club, a 1989 novel that follows four Chinese immigrant families and their lives in vignettes, set in San Francisco. The novel’s structure is similar to a game of mahjong, where four parts are divided into four sections, creating sixteen chapters.


A passage in The Joy Luck Club reads:

I will use this sharp pain to penetrate my daughter’s tough skin and cut her tiger spirit loose. She will fight me, because this is the nature of two tigers. But I will win and give her my spirit, because this is the way a mother loves her daughter.

Today, Wednesday, May 3, Lost Generation celebrates the AAPI collaboration beer with a launch party that will see the witbier offered alongside food from Bund Up and Moon Rabbit. Chef Kevin Tien will debut a new BBQ concept, and 100% of proceeds from Tiger Spirit today will benefit Chefs Stopping AAPI Hate, while 10% of sales from Tiger Spirit throughout the month of May will go to the organization.

“Since the entire LG management team were NRG alums, we always knew we wanted to collaborate with Bluejacket. It was Tim Liu’s [Neighborhood Restaurant Group Assistant Beer Director] great idea to turn this into a charity beer supporting Chef’s Stopping AAPI Hate for AAPI History month,” Choe told us. This isn’t Bluejacket’s first AAPI collaboration, having previously brewed a rice lager, Gan Bei, with Fairfax’s High Side, owned and operated by Jinson Chan.

Gan Bei rice lager

Not two miles down the road, beers brewed in China, Hong Kong, and Japan are available at the Craft Beer Cellar on H Street.

A purple vase filled with beer and a can of Master Gao Nanjing Black Beer sits atop a wooden table.
Pic via the importer, B United

Beer from Master Gao Brewing Company, Nanjing Black Beer, is available in cans. Also, a beer from Hong Kong’s Young Master Brewery is on offer: Neon City Hong Kong Pale Ale is brewed with Mandarin and Bergamot zest. Hitachino Nest White Ale, a witbier brewed in Japan that has become something of a new classic in the craft community, is also available.

Another locally brewed option at CBC with AAPI ownership is Elder Pine Brewing and Blending Company. Their Cerveza Viejo Pino, a Mexican-style Pale Lager, is brewed with floor-malted Pilsner malt and equal parts Vienna malt and corn. In addition to the pale lager two other beers are available: Dust Below Pilsner, a lager with New Zealand Riwaka hops, and In the Misty Gloaming, a foeder aged Schwarzbier.

“The AAPI community has historically had the perception of being submissive, docile and overlooked for leadership roles. During my 20+ years in the hospitality industry, I was often the only minority female member in leadership groups, often dismissed and overlooked. I love that Tiger Spirit represents our strength and willingness to persevere, that the AAPI community will no longer sit silently along the sidelines and watch our people be harassed and abused. It made me really proud to see how quickly the AAPI community banded together during the height of anti-Asian sentiment during Covid and how we continue to be a stong force, which is why this collaboration means so much to us now, more than ever,” Choe tells us, and we’ll drink to that.

DC Beer’s next Women’s Brew Culture Club outing is to Lost Generation this Saturday, May 6, from 12-2 pm. RSVP if you can make it.