Little Egypt–Dogfish Head Brews Pyramid Laborer’s Brew
Sam Calagione, the mastermind behind Delaware’s Dogfish Head Brewery, has been a leader in exploring historical zymurgy by brewing ancient ales. Calagione works with molecular archaeologist Dr. Pat McGovern to create recipes which are based on the chemical analysis of residue from drinking and brewing vessels of antiquity.
Midas Touch, was first released in 1999, was based off of artifacts discovered in King Midas’ tomb in 1957. The brew has proven so successful that it is bottled year round.
The latest discovery from Dogfish Head Brewery is Ta Henket, which is an Egyption inspired potable inspired by Eyptian hieroglyphics. The concoction uses emmer wheat, loaves of hearth baked bread along with dom-palm fruit, chamomile and spice zatar. Fermentation was achieved by cultivating some wild yeast strain that was captured in Egypt.
Calagione noted that the original recipe generated lots of sulphur notes. Rather than let the rotten egg essence dominate the beer, the brew was run through a copper system to decrease the sulphur and thereby accentuating the spice characteristics.
Initially, Ta Henket was only available at the Rehoboth Beach brewpub but perhaps it will be rolled out in larger bottling like Midas Touch. If you are truly inspired, you can brew your own. Or it may remain an acquired taste with limited distribution area like Chicha–just don’t quaff it warm.