Monday, July 9, 2012

July 16: Homunculus Returns!

The second release of our hoppy, Belgian golden ale, Homunculus, will begin leaving our warehouse on Monday, July 16.  Just a reminder that joining our Big Beer Series Subscription ensures you'll get bottles of each release before we begin shipping it to our wholesalers.  Here's all the information on this year's release. 

Smuttynose’s Homunculus returns to the Big Beer Series after a wildly successful 2011 debut.  Inspired by hoppy, golden Belgian ales, Homunculus’ prototype was a 2007 Short Batch Series release called “The Gnome.”  It was a nice tribute, but we needed a new name for the bottled version.  Not only is “homunculus” a memorable name, but it’s also synonymous with “gnome.”

So what is a Homunculus?  The term, Latin for "little human,” shows up in disciplines as diverse as psychology, alchemy, and biology.  As you can see from the label art, we were captivated by the biological roots of the term.  Before the creation of ground lenses and microscopes (circa 1600), medieval scientists had many theories that explained the origin of human life.  “Preformationism,” widely accepted at the time, proposed that each new child grew from invisible, miniature versions of themselves (homunculi). 

Enough genetics, let’s talk about the beer!  Like the label says, Homunculus is a hoppy, Belgian-style golden ale. A special yeast strain creates an array of fruity esters which complement the hop aromatics.  The simple grain bill of 2-Row base malt, German Carahell, and some cane sugar lends a touch of sweetness, but more importantly, a lightness of body.  Magnum hops are used exclusively at the beginning of the boil for a clean bitterness, while late boil additions of Sterling contribute a subtly spicy hop flavor.  We’ve already got the makings of one tasty beverage, but Homunculus' real moxie comes from its pungently aromatic dry-hopping.  Our brewing team selected Saphir, a newer German noble hop variety, as this year’s dry-hop.  Saphir contributes a clean, subtle aroma reminiscent of tangerines.

We'll begin shipping Homunculus the week of July 16 and it should begin appearing in beer stores, bars and restaurants not long after that, depending on when each order goes out.  

Stat Box
9.37% ABV
45 IBU
Starting Extract: 20˚ Plato   Finishing Extract: 2.5˚ Plato
Malt: North American 2-Row, Weyermann Carahell
Hops: Bittering-Magnum, Flavor-Sterling, Dry-Saphir
Yeast: White Labs Trappist Ale Yeast, WLP-500
Special Guests: Cane Sugar, to lighten the body.
Production Size: 200 barrels (6200 gallons)  

Homunculus pairs well with a wide range of dishes.  Its fruity notes will accentuate earthy foods like terrines and pâtés, sausages or hearty stews.  Homunculus also has enough acidity to stand up to white, creamy pasta sauces and grilled salmon.  For cheese courses, we suggest any variety except blue cheeses.

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