Mad Elf has been a wild ride from the very first batch.


Back in the fall of 2002 — in the days when our founding brothers Chris and John were busy brewing, cleaning, bartending, giving tours on weekends, and in between all that making sales calls up and down central Pennsylvania – they hatched a plan to have a little holiday fun.


They decided to brew a big, bold Belgian-style ale made with cherries and honey. Loads of cherries and loads of honey. They were all in on this beer, but one question came up: They figured they needed about 300 pounds of honey. Just where do you get that much honey?


At that point in their lives, their experience with honey had been limited to those little bears you get at the grocery store. Three hundred pounds, in the words of John, seemed like a “sh!t ton.”


Well, as luck would have it, they found a guy in Carlisle, PA, only 30 miles from the brewery, who calls himself The Happy Beekeeper. The Happy Beekeeper not only keeps bees himself, but he sources from other small Pennsylvania beekeepers. He got the 300 pounds for the very first batch of Mad Elf. And maybe more importantly, Chris and John got an education in honey.


While visiting home-brew shops and beekeepers and researching honey in central Pennsylvania, the brothers realized how much time and effort went into every pound. “It was mesmerizing and astonishing,” says to John.


They also got to taste different honeys: clover honey, wildflower honey, locust honey. And they were able to first-hand discover that the sweet, floral wildflower honey helped brighten the sweet and sour cherries and the Belgian strong ale base.


Of course, our priority is buying the best ingredients in the world. A lot of times that means Germany or England or the Pacific Northwest. But we’re lucky, because sometimes we can find the very best ingredients right here in central Pennsylvania. Today, we still buy all of our honey for Mad Elf from The Happy Beekeeper, and that 300-pound order has increased to 25,000 pounds a year. Happy beekeeper, indeed.


For many beer drinkers, the holidays don’t truly start until they’ve had their first Mad Elf, and we think Tröegs – from Mad Elf to Blizzard of Hops to Perpetual IPA to Troegenator Beer Cheese – has a place on every holiday table.



Mad Elf
The holidays at Tröegs start with our inner Mad Elf momentarily taking over the brew deck. So blame “him” for this cheerful ruby red creation reminiscent of ripened cherries, raw honey and cocoa with notes of cinnamon, clove and allspice. We taste: chocolate malt, cherries, honey and warm spices. 11% ABV



Blizzard of Hops
We created this Winter IPA to toast hop growers around the world for another successful harvest. This storm of hoppy citrus and pine notes is a bright reminder the end of the Hop Cycle is only the beginning. We taste: spruce tips, pineapple and orange rind. 6.4% ABV



Blood Orange & Cranberry Tart Ale
The classic Madras cocktail was the inspiration for our new Blood Orange Cranberry Tart Ale. Brewed with 17 pounds per barrel of real fruit, this beer gets a tart first fermentation with lactobacillus. A second fermentation with our house ale yeast makes way for the sweet citrus of fresh blood orange and the tangy bite of cranberries. We taste: tart berry, sweet citrus and a hint of salt. 4.5% ABV



Most Wonderful Beer Sampler
Our 12-pack sampler includes two Mad Elf cans, two Perpetual IPAs, two Troegenator Double Bocks, two Blizzard of Hops IPAs, two DreamWeaver Wheats and two Chocolate Stouts. It’s the #MostWonderfulBeer of the Year! And the only place you’ll find Mad Elf, DreamWeaver and Chocolate Stout in cans!



Troegenator Beer Cheese
We can’t get enough of this intersection of local dairies, local beer and local good. Troegenator Beer Cheese – a creamy, caramel-y and savory collaboration with Caputo Brothers Creamery – is helping to keep small Pennsylvania dairies in business. Find it exclusively at GIANT Food Stores. Learn more here.

Find all of the above beers – and more – near you at