Dogfish Head Brewery continues its association with Vienna, Austria’s Michael Hacker for the next addition to this year’s Off Centered Art Series, the brewery’s fall favorite Punkin Ale.
Michael has been cranking out some great labels for the Delaware brewery having contributed to previous Art Series beers Perfect Disguise and 75 Minute IPA and as always, the Punkin Ale label captures his unique style.
Sadly, I believe this will be the last label for the brewery from Michael as I believe they’ll be announcing a new artist sometime in the fall who will take over the honor in 2020. I’m looking forward to seeing who Dogfish Head decides to work with next, but there’s plenty of beer drinking time between now and then.
Below is Michael’s new label plus below that, the excellent label by 2018’s Off Centered Artist, Marq Spusta, simply because I love it.
Tuesday I was surfing the interwebs looking for something to distract me from doing what I should have been doing when something from Dogfish Head popped up and reminded me that I should (once again) check to see if they had posted up their 2019 beer release calendar yet. Sadly, they had not, which caused me to wonder why considering we’re starting to chip away at the month of December.
But, about a hour later I was on Facebook (still not doing what I was supposed to be doing) when I saw that Sam was live going through next year’s releases with the calendar being posted on the website soon after. This could have been one of those great cosmic coincidences that occasionally happens (like when you think of a song you haven’t heard of for a long time and then it happens to be the next song to play on the radio) or it could be (as I like to think of it) a case of great minds thinking a like. Anyway, let’s see how it shapes up this year.
As with last year, the releases are broken up into three categories: Year Round, Art Series, and Occasionals. And, don’t be surprised if a few beers that aren’t listed pop up throughout the year, DFH can be sneaky that way.
Year round is pretty much the same as last year with only one notable change, Liquid Truth Serum graduates from last year’s Art Series. The beer is currently available out there in 16oz cans, but you can also expect to see it in 12oz cans soon.
Sadly, something had to apparently go, so Indian Brown has been dropped this year, so if you’re a fan get it while you can.
The Art Series still sees Dragons & Yums Yums and Punkin Ale anchor down the middle of the year while last year’s Romantic Chemistry has been replaced with The Perfect Disguise (Feb-Apr). Liquid Truth Serum, due to its promotion to year round will be replaced by 75 Minute IPA (Nov-2020J) which you can pick up in stores now even though it wasn’t on last year’s calendar (see, sneaky).
Occasionals? Well let’s just say if you’re a huge fan of any of the beers on last year’s list, you might be disappointed this year. Festina Peche, Mixed Media, Fruit-Full Fort, Pennsylvania Tuxedo, and Siracusa Nera all disappear. The only beer that survives the culling is 120 Minute IPA (Aug-Dec).
Replacing that troop is American Beauty (which in a total contradiction is “ocssionally” available from Jan to Dec next year), Raison D’Extra (Jan-Apr), World Wide Stout (May-Aug), and SuperEIGHT (Apr-Dec).
Also on the calendar are the Summer Variety pack (May-August), and the IPA for the Holidays pack (Nov-Dec).
Below is my annual, no thrills version of the calendar. You can find DFH’s snazzy version here.
Dogfish Head is gearing up to release another new beer, Super Eight which is listed by the brewery as a super-fruit gose style beer. Ok.
The 5.3%ABV beer boasts an impressive list of ingredients including Hawaiian Red sea salt, prickly pear, mango, boysenberry, blackberry, raspberry, elderberry, and kiwi juices, and toasted quinoa. I’m not going to lie, it sounds like someone went wild at a Jamba Juice. Still, DFH has a habit of making this kind of thing work, so I wouldn’t be surprised if it turns out to be a hit.
But in doing a little reading on the web, the ingredient list wasn’t the most interesting thing I found out about this beer. Buried in a Brewbound article about DFH’s overall market plans for the future I found the following paragraph:
To help bring the brand to life, Dogfish is partnering with Kodak to produce a documentary film chronicling an East Coast boat journey (from Key West to Maine) that Calagione and his son will take next year. And the beer itself – which is acidic and has a high vitamin C count — is capable of developing Super 8 film, which Calagione said will give the company an opportunity to market the brand with an “off-centered approach to storytelling.”
Using beer to develop film? That struck me as odd but as it turns out it is not unheard of as i was able to dig up a couple of examples on the web. Here is an article from someone who tried several different homemade developers, one of which was beer, that he states he got good results with, and here is a Youtube video from 2013 of a guy from Australia using beer. The things you learn.
Dogfish Head brewing will be releasing their Grateful Dead collaboration American Beauty in special collector cans. The pale ale, brewed with granola and honey will be released in 1 pint, 3.25 oz cans, which are the taller, thin cans or what I like to call the energy drink cans. I would expect these to possible show up in 4-packs and individually. No word on the release date yet, but I suspect you will have to wait until 2019 for this one.
According to their social media, Dogfish Head will be adding a new bottling to their IPAs for the Holidays pack. Viniferous IPA is a 6%ABV beer/wine hybrid brewed with El Dorado, Hallertau Blanc and Huell Melon hops and then fermented on Riesling and Viognier grape must. Viniferous IPA was offered as only a brewery exclusive earlier this year and was brewed with a different hop profile then the upcoming bottling.
The holiday pack will also include 60 and 90 minute IPA as well as another beer/wine hybrid Sixty-One, which if you don’t recall is their 60 minute IPA with syrah grape must added – all three of which were offered in last year’s holiday pack, with Viniferous replacing last year’s Indian Brown Dark IPA.
Dogfish Head’s IPAs for the Holidays 12-pack will start hitting the shelves sometime in November.
As I wrote back in the beginning of the month, Dogfish head is beginning to release a new series of beers captioned “Wooden…It Be Nice”, a salute to wood-aged, wild ales. Below is the label art for the third beer in the series Eastern Seaboard, an ale aged in both red and white wine barrels and infused with blackberries and beach plums.
Eastern Seaboard gets its wild side from inoculations of both Brettanomyces and Lactobacillus, and will clock in at 8.2% alcohol.
As with all beers in the “Wooden…it be Nice” series, Eastern Seaboard will only be available at the Milford brewery for $10 a 375mL bottle, and only 2000 bottles will be made available. Look for Eastern Seaboard sometime around mid-December.
Wow, Dogfish Head has been busy lately. Back around September, the brewery announced a new series of beers coming out as special Milton brewery only releases.
The new series “Wooden…It Be Nice” is a salute to wood aged, wild ales, something that not only was of interest to the brewery, but that they also had some experience with:
“About fifteen years ago, we first started experimenting with sours, beginning with Festina Lente – a peach wild ale that won us a bronze medal at the World Beer Cup the first year it was produced – then went on to produce SeaQuench Ale which is currently the top selling sour in America,” says Dogfish founder & CEO Sam Calagione. “Now, we’re amplifying our wild beer program with ‘Wooden … it be nice!,’ as it’s another step forward in our journey and evolution of goodness incorporating everything from herbs and spices, to local fruits, and of course, bringing it all together in wood.” (From Dogfish Head’s blog)
The program started releasing back in September with KnottyBits, a wild ale (8.2%ABV) aged for a year with Brettanomyces and then racked onto several hundred pounds of sweet and sour cherries and locally sourced rhubarb from Fifer Orchards.
Now it’s time for the next in the series as November brings Wet Hop American Summer, a farmhouse ale (7.75%ABV) aged in Chardonnay barrels with Brettanomyces before being introduced to wet (freshly harvested) whole leaf Citra hops.
Look for the third release Eastern Seaboard, a wild ale (8%ABV) some time in December. The beer sat on blackberries and beach plums after ageing over a year in wine barrels.