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Behind the Scenes: We Have a Winner!

September 18, 2012

Annual Harpoon Employee Homebrew Competition – the final tasting at our Company Meeting!

For those of you who have been keeping up with our annual Harpoon Employee Homebrew Competition, you probably have been eagerly awaiting this announcement.

For those of you just tuning in – yesterday, we held our annual Harpoon Company Outing and the final round of our annual Harpoon Employee Homebrew Competition. 10 beers made it to the final round, everyone voted for their top three favorites… but only one beer could win. The winning beer will be available for everyone to enjoy as part of our 100 Barrel Series next year!

The beers have been tasted, compared and voted on. The results are:

5th Place: Black Pepper Porter

4th Place: India Pale Ale

Tied for 2nd: Coconut Porter & Single Malt/Single Hop

And the winner is the…

Hoppy Belgian Blonde Ale!

We think this beer is delicious and we hope you do too! Stay tuned to find out when this beer will be released near you!

Love Beer. Love Life.


Behind the Scenes: The Finalists Have Been Announced!

September 14, 2012

For those who have been following –we’re in the midst of our annual Harpoon Employee Homebrew Competition.

This week, there have been two solid days of tasting. With 20 entries, the competition was fierce. Every employee had three votes per day (1st, 2nd, and 3rd choices), and you couldn’t vote for your own beer as your first choice. After tasting 20 beers, the final 10 have been chosen.

Annual Harpoon Employee Homebrew Competition – The Tastings!

The beers that have made it to the final round are:

  • Black Pepper Porter
  • Pacific Rim Saison
  • Green Tea IPA
  • Coconut Porter
  • Blueberry Saison
  • Chocolate Cherry Porter
  • Patersbier
  • Orange Cream Ale
  • Single Hop/Single Malt Ale
  • Hoppy Belgian Blonde
  • India Pale Ale

The final tasting will be held during our annual Company Meeting on Monday, September 17 (Reminder… both breweries are closed that day). The winning brew will be available next year as part of our 100 Barrel Series, which means, you will get to enjoy a beer that is near and dear to all of us here at Harpoon.

Which of the above beers would you stock your fridge with as the next 100 Barrel  from Harpoon?

Stay tuned for the final results next week!

Behind the Scenes – Harpoon’s Annual Employee Homebrew Competition

September 5, 2012

For the past 26 years, we have prided ourselves in crafting beers that we enjoy drinking, and what better way to explore new recipes than with an employee home brew competition?

Every year employees from every part of the company get together in small teams and brew a beer for the annual homebrew competition that takes place during our annual company outing (September 17th this year… yes, both breweries will be closed.) Everyone has the opportunity to taste the homebrewed beers and then, the voting begins. By the end of the day, a winner will be crowned.

What does the winner win?

Well, this year a lot is on the line. The winning homebrew will be featured next year as a member of our 100 Barrel Series!

With over 10 teams this year, the competition is quickly heating up. Creativity is involved in every aspect – from recipe development to tap handle design. I’m not kidding, one team developed a beer that includes Fluff, chocolate and graham crackers. Another team dumped cherries in, while another team used coconut.

In the end, it comes down to what beer we enjoy… and look forward to hearing your thoughts when we release it next year (hint: we think you’ll agree)!

The first elimination will happen next week – stay tuned to the blog (and our Facebook page) to learn more about the beers, and which ones will make it to the final round on September 17th, and ultimatley which one will win this year’s competition.

Perfecting the Tailgate with Harpoon’s New Mix pack!

August 21, 2012

Love Beer. Love Tailgates.

The air is getting crisp here in New England, and you know what that means?

Football season.

You know what else that means?

The best fall beers from Harpoon.

We have something new and exciting for you to enjoy this football season – the new Harpoon Tailgater Mix Pack!

We kept you in mind when we asked ourselves, “What beers would make everyone’s tailgate perfect?” and we came up with what we think is a game-winning mix pack full of our favorite fall beers, including:

Harpoon IPA

Harpoon Octoberfest

UFO Pumpkin

Rich & Dan’s Rye IPA

So fire up the grill, start making your famous game-day chili and grab a 12-pack or a case of our new Tailgater Mix Pack and you will be the coolest person at your next tailgate.

Have you enjoyed our Tailgater Mix Pack this season? Let us know what you thought of it the comments section or on our Facebook page!

Love Beer. Love Football. Harpoon.

Happy Second Annual #IPADay!

August 2, 2012

That’s right , it’s #IPAday – it’s the best day of the year! As you can imagine, this holiday holds a special place in our hearts.  We love our IPA.  We love all of our IPAs, actually.  When we first started brewing Harpoon IPA as a summer seasonal (nearly two decades ago!) we had no idea that one day there would one day be a holiday in honor of the style.

Last year marked the inaugural #IPAday and you can read our post to learn more about the history of this awesome holiday, which gives us yet another reason to celebrate our favorite beer style – IPA!

We have seen our IPA collection grow over the past couple of years, and we love each and every one of them! In order to make it easier for you to pick out which of our IPAs you are going to drink tonight, I am going to quickly outline all of our delicious offerings starting with…

 Harpoon IPA

Levitathan Imperial IPA

Rich & Dan’s Rye IPA

And… our latest IPA ….

100 Barrel Series #43 White IPA (Bottled TODAY)

Which one do you plan on enjoying today? Let us know! Use #IPAday on Twitter and let the world know which IPA you will be drinking come 5:00PM (or lunch time – we don’t judge).

We love our IPAs and we hope you do too, so we raise a glass to you this #IPAday – Cheers to you and enjoy the best day of the year!


Harpoon Bohemian Pilsner – an Ode to European Beer Culture

July 18, 2012

You may have noticed this summer season that we have a new six pack out on the shelves – Harpoon Bohemian Pilsner!

Harpoon Bohemian Pilsner was first introduced in 2006 as 100 Barrel Series #15.  Dan Kenary brewed the beer as an ode to the beer that he drank and loved while traveling through the Czech Republic, the birthplace of the Pilsner style, on one of the brewery’s European beer trips.

When Harpoon employees hit their fifth anniversary with the brewery, Dan Kenary and Rich Doyle take them on a European brewery trip.  Harpooners have chronicled some of their adventures on this blog – so check them out!

“Rich and I started the annual Harpoon Beer Culture Trip because we wanted our colleagues to experience firsthand the different ways countries celebrate and revere their local beer, as we did when we traveled abroad after college,” said Dan.  “Not only are the trips educational and incredibly fun, but they also inspire some of our favorite beers that we brew, including the Bohemian Pilsner.”

This beer is a lager, which means the beer conditions about six weeks. This is different from the rest of our offerings, since they are primarily ales and condition for a shorter period of time. What does that mean for the flavors of the beer? Well, it results in a very refreshing and crisp beer that still has a lot of complex hop characteristics.

The Bohemian Pilsner is a great example of our philosophy – we brew things that we like to drink! Dan was inspired to brew this beer in 2006 because he had explored some classic styles in their country of origin.  Thank goodness he did, because six years later it’s one of my favorite beers to drink during the summer!

We hope you enjoy this beer as much as we do! Want to know where you can find it near you? Check out our new Beer Finder and see where you can grab a pint or a six-pack near you!

The Boston Brewhouse Project!

June 27, 2012

Pre-run tank that was delivered to Boston!

That’s right… for the past couple of weeks our Boston brewery brewhouse has been getting a little makeover. The Boston brewhouse was installed in 2002, and allowed us to double capacity at that time.

Now, 10 years later, we are looking on how to increase capacity and efficiency in order to keep on making delicious beer for everyone to enjoy!

I chatted with Caleb Cowgill, one of the Process Engineers here at Harpoon, who worked on this project to learn a little bit more about what’s been happening for the past couple of weeks.

Q: What exactly changed and revamped in the brewhouse?

A: Additional run off lines were added to the bottom of the Lauter Tun, and a pre-run tank was put in between the Lauter Tun and the Boil Kettle. Additionally, a new brewhouse operating system is currently being installed.

Q: Why did those changes need to occur?

A: The boil is the longest part of the brew process (90 minutes). Adding the pre-run tank allows us to begin running off the next batch before the first one has finished boiling – instead of simply waiting. The additional run off lines will shorten the run off time. The new computer system will also give the brewers more accurate control over the entire process!

Q: What does that mean for beer production?

A: In theory, we are increasing our brewing capabilities by about 25%.

And what does that mean for you? More of your favorite Harpoon beers!

Work here at the brewery is never done, and Caleb also mentioned that by the end of the year, we will begin working on a cogeneration system to help lower our draw on the power grid… along with a few other surprises – but it’s too soon to talk about those.

So crack open a delicious Harpoon Bohemian Pilsner, and enjoy a great Wednesday knowing that more of your favorite Harpoon beers are about to be brewed!

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