Tonight, Harpoon released their 16th edition of their 100 Barrel Series. It is named Frankenfest, due to the Frankenstein nature of its creation. It was created by literally taking different parts of Harpoon beers and brewing them together. A review of the evening follows:
4:29pm - On my way to Boston
5:03pm - Arrived at the Harpoon Brewery
5:26pm - Having arrived nearly an hour early, I headed over to Yankee Lobster, and ordered myself fish and chips, which were delicious. I ordered a Beach Bum Blonde Ale with them, and you can find reviews of that here
5:46pm - Having just inhaled my dinner, I head back over to the brewery
5:47pm - One minute later, I'm in line, standing in the stairwell leading up to the brewhouse. There were seven people more eager than I was apparently
5:53pm - First thoughts on the new beer: medium to dark amber color, still body, white fizzy head. Faint malt aroma, no significant hop presence. Heavy malt character in the initial taste, light sweet at first, moving to a moderately sweet finish. Average duration, light on the mouth, soft carbonation. Addition of hops give it a dry finish.
6:54pm - On my 5th sample glass of Frankenfest, still waiting for the mad scientist to come out and talk about the beer.
6:59pm - Staff just tapped new kegs for the Octoberfest and the Frankenfest. It's flying out of the taps.
7:02pm - Andy Seguin introduces Mike Smith, the brewer. Some of his notes follow: Brewed under a full moon, which he didn't notice until he was driving home that night. Also bottle under a full moon, so the beer went on a lunar cycle. The original beer was brewed two and a half years ago for a Beer Advocate event in Boston. Originally called the Frankenbock, Mike took parts of the IPA, Octoberfest, and Munich Dark during different stages of brewing, took them home, and fermented them with his own yeast. The C.E.O., Rich Doyle, enjoyed the beer so much, he kept the idea percolating in the back of his mind, and eventually told Mike to brew it as a 100 Barrel offering. Originally it was 8.5% ABV, but since Vermont does not allow beer over 8% to be sold, he toned it down to 6.9% for this batch to allow those crazy catamounts to enjoy it as well.
7:31pm - Leaving Harpoon with two bottles of Frankenfest that were bottled just four days earlier (10/06) to review.