The Witch Hunt – Vocation Limited Edition 10/12
As Vocation Brewery’s year of monthly specials draw to a close, we saw that as no reason to slow down but instead embrace our ghoulish side just in time for Halloween and delve into the history books.
Number 10 on the list is a very sessionable 4.2% pale ale hailing from New England… home to the witching capital of the world: Salem. And, as if by magic (or witchcraft), our deep dive into the archives uncovered some scary truths about the uneasy relationship between beer and witches.
Brewing beer is one of the oldest practices on Earth and over 6000 years ago, it was predominantly the job of a woman. So much so a German nun, by the name of Hildegard of Bingen, is even considered to be the unofficial patron saint of beer.
In the 1500s, so-called alewives would set up stall on the street brewing their beer in huge black cauldrons, wearing tall pointed hats to help them to stand out on the busy streets. Some who brewed in shops would hang a broomstick on the door to let people know they were open.
But like many things today, the idea that a woman could have such a powerful place in society seemed preposterous. Suddenly the women who were once revered for their brews were now victims of a smear campaign spearheaded by jealous men desperate to take their brewing glory. And thus the idea of a witch was born: scary, nasty women who were not to be trusted.
Cue The Witch Hunt, ours and Vocation Brewery’s homage to those powerful women, witches and alewives who blessed us with beer for the ages.
A super bright, almost neon yellow serves as the backdrop for an illustration in the style of pre-15th century wall paintings celebrating the women and witches who paved the way for what we know as craft beer today. A tactile varnish across the entire label gives each can a scratchy, old time feel to help transport you back to those witchy Salem days.
Find The Witch Hunt pouring at Vocation bars or hit up their web store to get your hands on this spooky brew.