Friday, October 31, 2008

Meet the Brewer Night at City Beer Store

Shaun, Craig and Beth of City Beer Store

Thursday night found us at City Beer Store in San Francisco. The place was packed and we were serving Black in Back Dark IPA, Double Trouble Imperial IPA, Diesel Imperial Smoked Porter and Fat Bavarian. We also enjoyed cans of Brew Free! or Die IPA and Hell or High Watermelon Wheat. Both Shaun and Jesse were there chatting up the place. Great time.

Thursday, October 30, 2008

Meet the Brewer tonight at City Beer Store

Join Shaun, Jesse and the 21A Can Crew at City Beer tonight. Come on down and chat up the 21A brewers and taste some great beer. The fun starts at 6PM. What a great way to start the Halloween weekend. See you there. 

Wednesday, October 29, 2008

Beer Education at Chez Panisse in Berkeley, CA

Shaun was at Chez Panisse in Berkeley on Monday to give the staff a talk on craft beer and a tasting. Chez Panisse, started by Alice Waters,  is the venerable restaurant and founder of California cuisine and named by Restaurant Magazine as one of the top fifty restaurants in the World and a huge supporter of the Slow Food movement. This was the first time that a brewer has come into the restaurant to do a talk on beer and tasting. The staff asked a lot of great questions and everyone tasted some fabulous beer. Chez Panisse serves some great craft beers at their location on Shattuck Avenue in Berkeley. 

The beers we tasted:

21st Amendment's Brew Free! or Die IPA (out of a can)
Lagunitas Pils
Anchor Steam
Bear Republic Red Rocket
Deschutes Black Butter Porter
Sierra Nevada Harvest Ale
Russian River Brewery Sanctification
North Coast Old Rasputin
Anderson Valley's Brother David

Canned Beer in Alaska

The Great Alaskan Pipeline

Go North he said and we did! The great state of Alaska is now offering cans of our Brew Free! or Die IPA and Hell or High Watermelon Wheat. Alaska and canned craft beer go hand and hand. Alaskan's love craft beer and the great outdoors. There is nothing like snow machining (that's snow mobiling for all of you in the lower 48) and having some great beer at the end of the ride. Both Shaun and Dave, our Chief Can Evangelist, went up to Fairbanks and Anchorage and met with craft beer canned beer lovers to kick off the beers in the great white north. We also had some fun getting together with Gabe the brewmaster from Midnight Sun Brewery in Anchorage. 

Monday, October 27, 2008

Show Us Your Cans!

Besides the fact that cans are better for beer and better for the environment than bottles, they're also more portable. You can take them to the pool, down the river, into the backcountry, and on the trail.

Where will you take canned craft beer? We'd like to know for our new Show Us Your Cans! campaign. Please send photos (with captions) of you and our beer going where no bottle dares. We'll post them to our website. Perhaps these images from Central Oregon will inspire you...

Lower Deschutes River

On a drift boat, entering the rapids.
On a mountain bike ride

By Dillon Falls, Deschutes River

Tuesday, October 21, 2008

Craft Beer Gets in Costume for Halloween

Just in time for Halloween, we’ve released craft beer disguised in a can to beer lovers outside San Francisco. Our “Hell or High Watermelon” Wheat beer and “Brew Free! or Die” IPA are now available , in cans, in Alaska and the greater Bay Area, including Marin, Alameda and Contra Costa counties. They can be purchased:

at better bars and neighborhood stores,
at Beverages and More stores statewide in California,
at finer specialty food chain stores such as Whole Foods, Mollie Stone’s and Andronico’s,
and soon, in the Sacramento/Tahoe area.

CANverting bottled beer drinkers, one can at a time…

Friday, October 17, 2008

We’ve Survived Our First weBEERnar!

What happens when a dozen beer writers and bloggers get together to talk about beer in cans? We all learn more than we bargained for.

We recently hosted a “weBEERnar,” which is a fancy word for an online press conference about beer. (Aren’t we clever?) Everyone who participated received a can of each of our canned beers, “Brew Free! or Die” IPA and “Hell or High Watermelon” wheat beer. We all cracked them open together and talked about beer in cans. If you missed it, here’s a Q&A that recaps the CANversation:

Why do you can vs. bottle?
Quite CAN-didly, that’s the number one question we get around here. Cans are simply better for the beer--they keep it fresher by protecting it from light, they are lined so they don’t affect the flavor of the beer, and they fit the craft beer drinker’s lifestyle by going places where glass just doesn’t dare - like beaches, pools, boats, parks and golf courses. Cans are also better for the environment. They use less energy to produce and transport, and they are recycled far more often than glass.

Watermelon wheat – what were you thinking?
This was one of Nico’s recipes. Everyone who tried it loved it, but the logistics of cutting up hundreds of watermelons and scooping out the flesh was just too daunting for mass production. When Shaun figured out a way to make it work, there was no stopping him.

Who else is canning craft beer?
There are a handful of craft brewers out there putting their beers in a can, and we salute them for it! We’ve had quite a few good beers in a can, including Fat Tire, Caldera, and Oskar Blues, among others. 

Why do you think cans are the next big thing for craft brewers?
Craft brewers are pretty picky about their beer. They know what it should taste like, and that’s the way they want it to taste when someone takes a sip. Bottles can’t guarantee the flavor integrity the way today’s cans do.

Why the new names for the beers?
People aren’t necessarily expecting to find a craft beer in a can. So we wanted to give our canned beer a name and an image that would get people’s attention long enough to CANsider us. Once they drink the beer, we know they’ll be pleased. The new names are actually a clever marketing ploy to get people past their preCANceived notions about cans.

On the can it says 21st Amendment Brewery, Cold Springs, MN. What's up with that?
Building a canning facility from scratch is an expensive task. If we had to build our own canning facility, our beers would probably be in bottles. But once we decided we wanted cans, we were determined to make it work. We figured there must be some breweries in the Midwest who wouldn’t mind increasing the production on their canning lines, so we started looking. We found a fantastic partner in Cold Springs, MN who was willing to work with us to meet our unusually high standards for canned beer.

Are you going to be putting out additional flavors?
When we do, you’ll be the first to know.

When will your canned beers be available in vending machines?
This is a brilliant idea that we suspect will go nowhere soon, unfortunately.