If you haven’t been to the brewpub recently, you may be out of the loop on all the awesome stuff we have going on. County-wide distribution is in full effect, we’re hosting Indy’s first barrel-aged only beer festival (called Barrels on Bonna) 10/10 and we’ve all been prepping for Halloween time in Irvington.
If you think that’s enough going on in one month, think again… Because we have officially started canning our Saucy Intruder Rye IPA and Natural Liberty APL! We sat down with Stephen Ruby, co-owner and head brewer, to discuss every can do (and can don’t) with our new cans.
Why cans? Why not bottles?
There are many reasons why we chose cans. One obvious reason: it is cheaper for us when it comes to the actual production and purchasing of the cans. The cans are more environmentally friendly and we think it does a better job keeping the quality of our product.
Also, it’s easier to take places. That’s a big thing, too! Growlers guarantee fresh beer and bottles will keep carbonation, but neither offer an efficient way to move the beer. Especially if you’re going to a party or to the pool. You can bring a bunch and leave some for your buddies.
Who came up with the design for the cans?
Lars Lawson from Timber Designs. He is known for his work with New Day Meadery and Hubbard and Cravens. We’ve been working with him for 2 years or so now.
We sat down with him to give us a feel for what we wanted aesthetic-wise and what the pub was going for (in terms of the beer). Minimalism was a big thing, so he worked the minimalism into that. He researched the legal history for a little more background, and ended up with a design that we’re really proud of.
Who cans your beer? What’s the canning process like?
Indiana Mobile Canning. They make the process pretty simple. Essentially, their whole system is set up in the back of a box truck. It takes them about an hour and a half to get everything going.
A pallet of cans are placed on top, feeding them into a line. They get moved into sets of four and get filled. Finally, the head gets attached, pressed down and sealed. It gets shot out, you put it into a four pack container. That gets put into a case. Once you have 6 in a case, you put it on a pallet.
Who makes your favorite canned beer?
I do love a good Miller High Life, I’m not even joking. But favorite canned beer? That’s a good question. I love Pinner from Oscar Blues. Osiris from Sun King is a great pale for the summer that you can take anywhere, along with Daredevil’s Liftoff and Flat 12’s Half Cycle. You can tell I’m on a hop kick. NOMADer WEISSE from Evil Twin is one of my favorite cans as well, it is a fantastic Berliner Weissebier.
But I think my favorite canned beer, because of the combination of the can and the beer itself, is Evil Twin’s Citra Sunshine Slacker. It’s a very nice 4.5% Citra Pale Ale that’s super refreshing. Plus, the can design is The Dude from The Big Lebowski, which is always in the running with my top favorite movies (along with Wayne’s World and Top Gun).
When should people expect to see 4 packs in stores?
We are going to see how the initial run goes through distribution at the tap room along with testing it in a few stores known for craft beer. We’ll see how we do with that. Hopefully we can see them in most stores throughout the county by the end of the year, but there is no set timeline.