Deschutes Brewery releases 30th edition of Jubelale

Deschutes Brewery Jubelale 2017 six-pack

Deschutes Brewery this morning issued the press release announcing this year’s release of their winter ale, Jubelale—and this year happens to be the 30th release of this beer. First released in 1988, “Jubel-Ale” was hand-bottled in 750ml champagne bottles, and it has returned every year since. (Check out below for a picture of that first bottle!)

Deschutes Brewery Jubelale 20171995 was the first year they released Jubelale with a unique label from a local artist, and each year since has featured a new label. This 30th release steps it up; here is the press release:

A work of art in more ways than one, Deschutes Brewery’s winter seasonal, Jubelale, will hit store shelves and tap handles next month to welcome the changing season. To celebrate the 30th bottling, for the first time ever, this year’s packaging will feature not one, but a series of custom snowflake themed illustrations by Bend, Oregon artist MaryLea Harris.

“I was so honored to be invited to create the label for the 30th anniversary of this beloved beer, and to join the ranks of artists I esteem and admire,” said Harris. “I like to work in series, and landed on creating four snowflake paintings for this project because no two snowflakes are alike just like no two beers are ever exactly alike. It’s exciting to be the first artist to create more than one piece of art for the label and have a mixed and matched set of bottles in each six-pack this year.”

Harris, who specializes in mixed-media and painting, used a complex process to create the Deschutes Snowflake series. She started by layering plaster and acrylic paint applied to a primed canvas with recycled plastic gift cards as scraping tools. As a nod to the history of the brewery and the beer, she tore up Jubelale posters from the past three years along with some local articles about Deschutes Brewery and glued them to the painted background. She then continued to build up layers of paint with brush strokes and liquid acrylic ink drips to achieve the colorful surface. The last step was to paint each snowflake by hand so, as she explains, “so each are unique and full of complexity and detail.”

This complexity adorning the bottle’s exterior is mirrored inside the bottle as Jubelale is unique to many of Deschutes Brewery’s other beers in its malty and dried fruit character, along with the use of EKG hops which have a light herbal and spice quality. Jubelale will be available in six-packs and on draft everywhere Deschutes Brewery beer is sold, starting in October.

A special launch event will be held at the Deschutes Brewery and Public House in downtown Bend on Monday, October 16th, where Harris will be on hand to meet with fans and sign posters. Harris is also our featured artist of the month in October and will attend First Friday at the Pub on October 6th as well.

So, keep an eye out for each of the four different snowflake labels. I don’t know if the plan is for each version to hit the market in batches or if they have been randomly mixed up.

As for that original bottle image of Jubelale I teased above:

Original bottle of Jubelale, courtesty of John Harris

This was sent to me a few years ago courtesy of John Harris, Deschutes’ original brewer, who had this is his collection.