The Barley Wine made by Bridgeport Brewing, Old Knucklehead, has long had one of my favorite names for a beer. For whatever reason, I’ve always loved the word knucklehead. As insulting epithets go, it hearkens back to a gentler age when people called each other big galoot, nincompoop or goof ball. To me, they’re the kind of insult you call your friend when he makes a mistake that you want to point out, but without really hurting his feelings. They seem more in the good-natured ribbing category of name-calling. And that’s how I see Old Knucklehead. With each label, a different beery luminary was featured in an illustration. Batch No. 11, for example, had Portland beer writer Fred Eckhardt on the label. The new one, which makes its debut today, has John DeBenedetti on it.
DeBenedetti owns F.H. Steinbart, a well-known homebrew shop in Portland. Batch 12 was aged in bourbon barrels and then was blended back into a cask. 1,100 cases will be bottled. John Foyston has the full story in today’s Oregonian.