First there was etrog liqueur to make Sukkot more festive, and now there is a special Hanukkah beer to help "light up" the holiday season and wash down the latkes and sufganiyot.
Shmaltz Brewing Company, an upstate-New York-based firm known for its He'Brew beers, has cooked up a special holiday brew called "Chanukah, Hanukkah, pass the beer." It is made with eight different hops, eight malts and also contains eight percent alcohol, more than the average five percent of many other beers.
Shmaltz has been producing beer since its founding in 1996, when it launched its He'Brew Genesis Ale. Last year it opened its own brewery in Clifton Park, New York.
Jeremy Cowan founded the company as an experiment for Hanukkah, according to reports, which said he delivered 100 hand-bottled, hand-labeled cases of He’Brew beer from the trunk of his grandmother’s Volvo around the San Francisco Bay Area in 1996.
The Hanukkah beer is available in a special four-pack, or as part of an eight-pack – including beers named Messiah nut brown ale, Rejewvenator and Jewbelation 18 – that can later be used to build a beer menorah.