The Grateful Dead Are Returning — Or at Least Their Dogfish Head Beer Is
The 1995 passing of Jerry Garcia marked the end of the original incarnation of The Grateful Dead, but the legendary jam band has continued to live on in other ways with side projects like The Other Ones and Dead & Company and a handful of "Fare Thee Well" shows in 2015. In 2013, Delaware’s Dogfish Head Brewery also kept the group’s memory alive (not that they needed a ton of help) with an official collaboration beer, American Beauty – named after the band’s acclaimed 1970 album.
Now, just as the remaining members of the band have continued to revisit The Grateful Dead’s music, The Grateful Dead’s beer is coming back as well. This week, Dogfish Head announced its 2019 beer release calendar, and American Beauty will be available throughout the entirety of 2019 in six-packs of 12-ounce bottles.
For those who might not have grabbed one the first time around (it’s never too late to become a Deadhead), American Beauty is a hoppy pale ale brewed with granola and wildflower honey – ingredients originally chosen after reaching out to fans of the Dead for suggestions. The brew also clocks in at 6.5 percent ABV as a tribute to the year the band was founded, 1965.
"We, at Dogfish, are inspired by [The Grateful Dead’s] music, along with their unprecedented ability to bridge long-lasting, meaningful connections with fans for decades on end," Sam Calagione, CEO and founder of Dogfish Head, said in a statement. "We’re thrilled to collaborate with the Dead for a second iteration of American Beauty and hope fans of free-spirited music and independent beer will join in welcoming back this classic pale ale."
This time around, Dogfish Head says the collaboration will also involve working with the official Grateful Dead archivist, David Lemieux. "Dogfish Head will partner with Lemieux on a number of projects, including an immersive storytelling experience at their Rehoboth and Milton properties in early February," the brewery explained.
Of course, one beer doth not a release calendar make, and Dogfish also announced a laundry list of other new and returning brews. For 2019, the year-round releases remain relatively the same: 60 Minute IPA, 90 Minute IPA, SeaQuench Ale, Flesh & Blood IPA, Namaste White, Lupu-Luau IPA, Palo Santo Marron, Burton Baton, Midas Touch, and Wood-Aged Bitches Brew all return. The only change is that the long-running Indian Brown is apparently getting the boot and being replaced with Liquid Truth Serum IPA.
The biggest new addition this year will be SuperEIGHT – described as "a vibrant red sessionable Super Gose … made with eight heroic superfoods including prickly pear, mango, boysenberry, blackberry, raspberry, elderberry and kiwi juices, with a touch of toasted quinoa and an ample addition of red Hawaiian sea salt" resulting in "delicious flavors of berries and watermelon [and] a slightly tart and pleasantly refreshing finish."
Another new entry will be The Perfect Disguise, said to be a "double dry-hopped American IPA brewed with German Chit malt, loaded with tropical flavors and a crisp Kölsch-like finish!"
Other returning limited-time beers include The Flaming Lips collab Dragons & YumYums, Punkin Ale, 75 Minute IPA, Raison D’Extra, World Wide Stout, and 120 Minute IPA. However, in some sad news, two personal favorites have been pulled for 2019: the classic peach-flavored Berliner Weisse Festina Peche and the spruce-accentuated seasonal Pennsylvania Tuxedo. Blame The Grateful Dead, I guess!
You can find the entire Dogfish Head 2019 release calendar on the brand’s website.