Humlevenner. Loosely translated, the Norwegian word means “hoppy friends,” the perfect moniker for a beer made by brewers who live around the way from each other.
Kevin Robichaud, a brewer at Sebago, and Charlie Melhus, co-founder of Norway Brewing Company, both live in Norway. Since Charlie opened Norway Brewing in 2015, Kevin has helped out from time to time, but this is the first official collaboration brew between the two breweries.
Rusty Packer, another Sebago brewer, also lent a hand on brew day. The aim was to create a big Double IPA to give Norway a change from their usual Farmhouse and Saison styles. Major hops they used are Mosaic, Lemon Drop, and El Dorado. It was Rusty’s idea to use rye for some background spiciness and flaked rye for some extra mouthfeel.
The result, says Kevin, is big and juicy with a nice malt background— and lemon candy and herbal aromas with a tropical citrus flavor hides the alcohol well for a 9.1% ABV beer. Kevin’s pro-tip: the warming sensation in your belly reminds you to sip and savor it.
Norway Brewing be releasing Humlevenner with a brunch menu to match (and filling growlers) at their microbrewery, right off Route 26 in Norway. You can also check out the new brew at Sebago’s new tasting room this weekend. (We recommend pairing it with a wood fired pizza, beet fries, or something else on the tasting room menu.) Whatever you decide, do it quickly. With a total yield of 4.5 barrels, Humlevenner won’t be around for long!