30 August 2012
As the Jones regime takes shape in the brewery, one of the first things to manifest is a buzz of activity.
In addition to some new beers (which we'll talk about below), former bartender Matt Gallagher has joined the brew crew and a few equipment improvements have begun, not the least of which is a new, custom-built grain mill from Canada. Our serving tanks are getting some much needed love and rehabilitation and a new hot-water-on-demand system means the guys have been able to do the first ever double brew day in the history of Portsmouth Brewery! Now onto the beer...
Autumn has apparently become collaboration brew time. Assistant Brewer Matt Tarpey brewed a single batch with his old co-workers at O'Connor Brewing in Norfolk, VA. The American Mild, named Mild Child, (3.7% abv) is brewed with a tongue-numbing 2.5 pounds of hops per barrel. Matt says O'Connor's Head Brewer Jimmy Walsh should be coming up to brew a batch in New Hampshire soon.
Autumn is a magical time in New England when the bounty of our local farms and gardeners can finally be enjoyed. We'll be returning to Blueberry Bay Farm to collect organic pumpkins for the annual double batch of Pumpkin Ale. Tyler says his Saison l'Automne will return to the taps with additions of squash and spices.
Finally, we're excited to announce what we hope will be the beginning of an ongoing series of season gruits, brewed in collaboration with John Forti, The Heirloom Gardener and Curator of Historical Landscapes at Strawbery Banke. A recent visit with John and his assistant Erik, yielded freshly cut hyssop, horehound, bergamot, heirloom apples, native hops, lavender and rosemary, to name some of the botanicals that will infuse their essence to a new beer. The unnamed gruit will be tapped in conjunction with Passport, New Hampshire's Craft Beer and Food Culinary Tour.
If those weren't enough, the boys in the basement have Cream Ale, Whipper Snapper, the 4% abv Petite Saison, the horizontally-fermented Oktoberfest, new addition Portsmouth Pale Ale and the next single-hop Project X, this time highlighting the Glacier hop variety.
Tyler is an active blogger and his Brewer's Notes is the second best place to keep up with our rapidly changing taplist. Obviously, our bar is the first!
Our production and packaging teams have done an excellent job keeping the Pumpkin Ale flowing. We've only got about 13 batches left to brew and package but there are plenty of kegs, six packs and twelve packs out in the trade at your favorite beer stores and restaurants.
Aye, laddie! Scotch Ale returns to the Big Beer Series after a three year hiatus. This year's release offers a special barrel-aged infusion! We secretly brewed a small batch of Scotch Ale earlier this year and then aged it in red wine barrels so we could blend it back with the larger portion of fresh beer. And that's just what we did!
Scotch Ales are beguilingly malty, exhibiting notes of caramel, toffee and a smoky character that comes from the use of smoked malt. Hopping is kept to token levels of bitterness and ours is right in line with this description.
This year's release comes in at 8.2% abv. Shipments will begin on September 24.
The last batch of Vunderbar Pils will ship to all our markets in the middle of September. While we're sad to see this beer go on hiatus, the return of our award winning Big A IPA is certain to provide a nice hoppy salve. Big A will be available in four packs and on draft from October through January. If the amount of emails we've gotten is any indication, a nice crowd is awaiting Stash when he returns.
Our next Short Batch Series release is a tribute beer for our friend, Lindsey Altschul, who passed away unexpectedly at the beginning of the summer. Lindsey was, among many other things, a lover of great beer. The beer, called Lindz, is a kolsch brewed with 100% local, organic malt. Since this is a tribute beer, most of the batch will stay local and release gatherings will be held around the Seacoast. Details aren't yet finalized, but will be posted on our blog and Facebook page and we'll send an e-blast to you all.
If you find yourself missing out on some Big Beer releases, why not subscribe to our Big Beer Series? Each subscription is good for nine releases and includes private release socials at Smuttynose.
Towle Farms Update…
After years of waiting, working and planning Smuttynose has officially broken ground on our new home at Towle Farm!
We held a ceremonial groundbreaking on August 16 with our staff, local Hampton officials, Seacoast brewers, bankers and construction company folks and US Senator Jeanne Shaheen.
The recent state of the economy caused lots of difficulties in securing financing for the brewery, but the final piece was secured on August 10. The bulk of the $18 million came from private loans and cash. The gap funding came from a complex loan package sourced from The federal Economic Development Administration, the Business Finance Authority and the Coastal Economic Development Finance Authority as well as the Small Business Administration's SBA 504 program. We are certainly thankful for each organization's contribution towards our new…
The building should be complete in September 2013 and we'll give you updates when we're able. In the meantime, you can follow progress at your own pace by logging into our construction webcam.