Brewmaster, Mad Scientist, Builder, Social Architect, and Renaissance man. Born near the capital in Eastern Pennsylvania, Naga grew up fishing, Wrestling, Breakdancing, doing Graffiti art, building half pipes, and racing BMX. As a teen, he traveled and competed as a Schwinn sponsored professional Freestyle rider. As a university scholar at Penn State studying business, Naga ran a production company, producing Hip Hop and Reggae. During a summer internship, he got turned onto home brewing and never looked back.
In the following years, Naga traveled and worked abroad in the Caribbean, Europe, Asia, and South America. During these exotic trips, Naga picked up valuable skills and traditions which would later serve him in his brewing ventures. He learned sacred geometry from Tibetan monks, herbal alchemy from shamans, Yoruba cooking in jungle quilombos, and carpentry from island fisherman.
Falling in love with the tropical islands of Bahia, Brazil, Naga decided to build his first brewery on the beach of Itaparica. This tiny solar/gravity powered craft brewery was the first in the state of Bahia and one of a handful in Brazil. As a craft beer pioneer, Naga introduced the region to flavorful and inventive beers using local fruits and ingredients. Naga’s mentorship in the region lead to the birth of many other craft breweries which thrive today.
Returning to the States, he helped build a Buddhist meditation center during the nascent of the Miami craft beer movement. He went on to help build Wynwood Brewing Co., Miami’s fist craft brewery who won Gold at GABF their first year. Naga’s influence helped mentor and shape the now booming Miami beer scene.
Naga’s exploits caught the attention of Dry River founders Dave and Vanda, and they struck up a quick friendship which revealed a mutual passion for making craft beer in a sustainable manner. A partnership ensued, and planning began for the team to build LA’s greenest brewery.
It was a few years of bureaucratic navigation and building hunting before the brewery was established.
In the interim, Naga moved to Kodiak, Alaska where as brewmaster he developed a barrel program, filling oak casks with beer made from ancient glacier water and foraged ingredients. Shoulder to shoulder with giant Kodiak bears, Naga and his his team would collect spruce tips, wild berries, alpine flowers, and yeasts from the pristine island wilderness. His beer quenched the thirst of many fishermen, scientist, and servicemen. On weekends, Naga taught home brewing to Navy Seals who were training in the frigid waters of Kodiak.
The Dry River team finally secured a building in the Industrial river district of Boyle Heights, Los Angeles and it was time to begin construction. Naga moved to L.A. and began demolition and construction of what would become one of the most unique breweries in the region. All of the materials used in the buildout were reclaimed in the neighborhood from old buildings from the early 1900’s. Everything in the brewery and tasting room were designed and built onsite in the tiny wood shop behind the barrel room.