Midas Touch brewed by Dogfish Head Craft Brewery in Milton, Delaware
This was the
first beer in Dogfish Head's Ancient Ales series. This sweet yet dry
beer is made with ingredients found in 2,700-year-old drinking vessels from
the tomb of King Midas. Somewhere between wine and mead, Midas will please
the chardonnay and beer drinker alike. The ingredients for the original 7.5%
ABV recipe in 2001 included yellow muscat grapes, lightly toasted 2-row
barley malt, thyme, honey and saffron. The ingredients for the 9% ABV recipe
include barley, white Muscat grapes, honey and saffron.
History of Midas Touch
Midas Touch Golden Elixir, marketed as Midas Touch, was first marketed in June
2001. The recipe for this beverage is based on the chemical analysis of residues
found in clay vessels believed to date back to the 8th century BC. Originally
discovered in Gordium, Turkey during a 1957 dig by archaeologist Rodney Young,
the content of these vessels was left unknown for 40 years. In 1997, molecular
archeologist Dr. Patrick McGovern received a phone call from a former student of
his informing him of a residue on clay jars from the tomb of King Midas. Dr.
McGovern quickly did chemical analysis finding all aspects of the drink except
for the spicing agent but made an assumption of saffron due to regional
Ancient Ales by Dogfish Head
You might not know it, but medieval Germans nearly ruined beer forever. In 1516,
a purity law called the Reinheitsgebot mandated that beer be made with only
water, hops and barley. (The role of yeast hadn't yet been discovered.) Thanks
to that bit of brewing censorship and the bastardized recipes of modern brewing
conglomerates, beer drinkers have been subjected to bland lager for a long, long
In 1995, Dogfish Head broke the shackles and started brewing extreme, exotic,
extraordinary beers, and we've been thumbing our noses at the Reinheitsgebot
ever since. We experimented with whatever ingredients we found in our brewpub
pantry, things like chicory, licorice root, maple syrup, honey, pumpkin, raisins
and brown sugar. People called us freaks, but we loved those full-flavored beers
and so did our customers, so we stuck to our guns.
Turns out, we were the ones making traditional beers.
In 1999, Dogfish Head started working closely with Dr. Patrick McGovern, one of
the world's leading experts in ancient beverages. He helped us uncover the
traditions of ancient brewers. Like us, those ancient brewers made the most of
the ingredients they had on hand, and their beers were as colorful and creative
as their cultures.
The Start of Dogfish Head, America's Smallest Brewery in 1995
The story of Dogfish Head began in June of 1995 when we opened Dogfish Head
Brewings & Eats, the first state's first brewpub opened in the resort beach
community of Rehoboth Beach, Delaware. The plan was to bring original beer,
original food, and original music to the area.
Not only was Dogfish Head Delaware’s first brewpub, it was the smallest
commercial brewery in America. Our very first batch, Shelter Pale Ale, was
brewed on a system which essentially was three little kegs with propane burners
underneath. Brewing 12–gallon batches of beer for a whole restaurant proved to
be more than a full time job. When the doors to the pub first opened, we brewed
three times a day, five days a week! The one benefit to brewing on such a small
system was the ability to try out a myriad of different recipes. We quickly got
bored brewing the same things over and over – that’s when we started adding all
sorts of weird ingredients and getting kind of crazy with the beers!