Knucklehead Pumpkin

Knucklehead Pumpkin and Gourds

Funny, a month ago I'd never even heard the term 'knucklehead pumpkin', and now there's one sitting on the table in front of me and I'm writing a website about them and taking pumpkin pictures like a madman.

I guess I like the unusual, when it has a mixture of the strange and the beautiful. I was actually doing a drawing for a client - a drawing of a beer label, if you must know - and their new beer was called 'Knucklehead Pumpkin Ale'. Of course I had to do a little research since I was drawing this thing, and lo and behold I find these gorgeous pumpkins.

Something about them attracted me right away. I've always loved the look, feel, size, weight, shape, color, and taste (cooked of course) of pumpkins, with those gorgeous orange waxy skins (rinds?) and huge bulbous forms. So when I see this new contender I hadn't known about, with all those wonderful warts, or bumps or lumps or growths or whatever you want to call them, I fell in love. They're just so... interesting-looking. I took a drive around the city but couldn't find any store that carried them, even though as I write this it is mid-October, nearing Halloween, and prime pumpkin season.

You know how bad I'm hooked? I drove to the next city over, where I knew there were many pumpkin fields this time of year, and a few big fruit stands that display pumpkins in huge piles of displays, in hopes of finding the elusive knucklehead pumpkin. The largest stand, my favorite, had none. I kept driving to the far outskirts of the place, passing stand after stand with no knuckleheads.

Knucklehead Pumpkin Ale
Finally, the very last fruit stand (of course)... success! They had dozens of them, mixed in with other kinds of pumpkins and gourds and squashes and whatever. I found baby knuckleheads, larger riper ones, ones with large and small warts, ones with green warts. I photographed a few of them amongst the myriad shapes and colors of the other fruits and vegetables, then looked at each one until I found 'my' knucklehead pumpkin, the one whose shape, color, size and warts 'spoke' to me. That one I grabbed (I mean purchased, not stole) and it sits in front of me now, awaiting its ordeal of being cut into, carved into a scary Halloween pumpkin face, and possibly having its seeds roasted for a salty snack. I will take pictures and write about that magnificent happening in my life, in a few days.

In the meantime, on the next page I will compile what facts and stats I can find about my newfound favorite pumpkin, the knucklehead. Enjoy the site and the pics. Oh, at right is a picture of that beer label I drew for Knucklehead Pumpkin Ale, for the Cannery Brewing Company in my hometown of Penticton, BC. Blame them for getting me started on the knucklehead! I drew the humble illustration, and Corina Messerschmidt of Spitfire Designs colored it and completed the label design. One of those projects where the product, the quality, the customer appeal, and the marketing all seemed to come magically together to create a wildly popular ale! As if that weren't scandalous enough, Cannery Brewing has now created a short video showing the stage-by-stage snapshots of how they create Knucklehead Pumpkin Ale!

Stay tuned, I'm sure there will be more!