Tag Archives: behind the beer

Seasonal Appeal West Coast ESB

Seasonal Appeal

Behind the Beer // Seasonal Appeal

One of our favourite beers at S&O was our old flagship brew the Dry Hopped ESB. Like many ESBs before it, it suffered from being called an ESB (a style which not a lot of people know), and riding that hop-forward Ale category while being below the 5% threshold.
It has all the qualities of a beer we like. It was refreshing, it was hoppy, it was balanced, and it was lower ABV. People loved it, and it’s the beer we get asked about the most. But not enough people bought it over time to make it viable for us to keep it under the Flagship lineup.
We changed the name to West Coast ESB, then considered changing it again to a Pale Ale but thought that was disingenuous to the style that we were trying to achieve. Eventually we just decided to nix it all together and bring it back at a later date for those of you who missed it, us included.
That time is now.
We’re excited to announce that we are re-releasing ESB under a cheekier name, Seasonal Appeal.
It’s the same beer, now in canned format, and only for a limited amount of time.

Behind the Label // Seasonal Appeal

We wanted to keep the overall vibe of the Flagship ESB so that people would know it was a nod to the original beer but in a new format. Here is my design brief to Sami:
“So this beer is our original flagship S&O West Coast ESB. We stopped making it cause it didn’t sell well enough to warrant keeping it around all year. But it’s an awesome beer and one we get asked a lot about bringing back. So we’re going to in a limited fashion. Not sure if there is a way to play off of this being an original beer we’re bringing back or a way to tie it to our original ESB but just wanted to throw it out there.”
Sami got back to me with the following options and description.
“I tried to take inspiration from the original flagship packaging like you had mentioned. But interpreting it in a different way. Let me know what you think!”
Seasonal Appeal
We decided to go with something that felt like Option 3 but with ESB instead of S&O to make it more obvious. I feel like it’s pretty obvious now 🙂
We’re happy to have been able to bring back one of our favourites for you to enjoy again, but you know, seasonally.
Cheers,
Jorden

Interstate Love Song – Gigantic x S&O

Behind the Beer // Interstate Love Song

So how does a brewery from Portland and a brewery from New West get together to make beer? Well Interstate Love Song (like many collabs) started over beers. I first hung out with Gigantic co-owner and Head Brewer Ben Love at Farmhouse Fest 2018. What started out as a friendly couple beers ended with us eating DL Chicken Shack sandwiches and trying not to get the hiccups. From that point forward, a friendship was formed.

Our Head Brewer Eric went down to Portland for a thing and popped into Gigantic to chat with Ben. Ben thought it’d be cool and very BCish to brew something with oysters. Eric said “Oyster Pilsner!” (Eric wants to make everything into a Pilsner) Ben has a chocolate supplier that he loves called Woodblock and with the release being in winter it was agreed that a Chocolate Oyster Stout may be a safer way to go. Once back in BC we met with Scotty the Big Shucker who was fired up about the collab and recommended some oysters from Desolation Sound.

Interstate Love Song has 60lbs. of cocoa nibs in it. About one pound of chocolate per 50L of beer. 300 whole Desolation Sound oysters went into the boil to give ISL a bit of brininess and minerality. If you haven’t had an Oyster Stout before don’t be scared (unless you’re allergic), this beer doesn’t actually taste like shellfish. The flavour profile is more in line with salted chocolate.

It was rad having Ben and his wife Andrea up for the brew day and we would love any excuse to brew with Gigantic again!

Behind the Design // Interstate Love Song

Interstate Love Song was originally going to be called Contains Shellfish. Buuuut I got a little pushback so we thought ISL was a creative name playing off of the Interstate that joins us, Love being Ben’s last name and the fact that this beer is made with some aphrodisiacs and will be launched Valentines Day, and finally, it’s a sweet Stone Temple Pilots song!

Here is my full brief to our designer Sami:

“What I’d like to do is for all 650ml bottle designs (including bottle collabs now) stick with the diamond shape label. I feel that the consistency on the shelf looks good. However, much like the regular collab labels we were doing before I think the interior of the diamond can be anything. It doesn’t need to follow the regular format of all other diamond labels. So it can really be anything you want, inside of that diamond shape. Gigantic is from Portland and has a very comic book feel to all of their stuff.”

If you had a look at our designer Sami’s S&O Instagram takeover you’ll actually be able to watch her design one of the versions of this label. The options I was sent are below and here are Sami’s explanations for each.

“Option 1: Working with a retro comic book texture in the label to represent the Gigantic side of the design. I’ve kept it black and white to keep it feeling sort of grunge like the song.
Option 2: Sort of an abstract play of a highway going into the distance (also a play on the song)
Option 3: Probably the most conceptual of the 3 but creating an icon that feels like a music note/highway sign and when they come together they make a heart ;)”

 

ISL OptionsWe decided to go with Option 1 but threw some colour at it. I think Sami did a great job of still keeping the font based vibe we use for S&O while adding a bit of that comic book feel that Gigantic is known for.

We’re really excited about this beer and hope that you dig it too. Unless you’re allergic to shellfish, then don’t dig this beer at all please.

-Jorden

Boombox Collab – A-Side and B-Side IPA

Boombox x Steel & Oak

Behind the Beer // Boombox A-Side & B-Side IPA

Super excited to announce that we’ve teamed up with the folks at Boombox to bring you a mixed four pack! Each pack comes with 2 x A-Side IPAs and 2 x B-Side IPAs. What is A-Side and B-Side you ask? Well here we go!

A-Side has all Northern Hemisphere ingredients including Citra, Azacca, and Equanot hops from the US as well as Superior Pilsner Malt from Alberta and Marris Otter from the UK.

B-Side has all Southern Hemisphere ingredients including Waimea and Rakau hops from New Zealand and Galaxy from Australia as well as Patagonia Pilsen Malt from Chile.

A-Side and B-Side are both fermented using the same yeast and pour a hazy straw colour.

Kent from Boombox has always been a big supporter of ours and just a general awesome dude so it’s always great to have an excuse to hang out with people you get along with and make some beer!

Behind the Label // Boombox A-Side & B-Side IPA

Both us and Boombox love music so doing a cassette themed label was a pretty easy call.

Below are the options that Sami sent our way. Options 1 and 2 she went retro cassette packaging inspired. Options 3 and 4 are still based off of cassette tapes but in amore graphic, abstract way.

A-Side B-Side Options

Launch Party // Boombox A-Side & B-Side IPA

We’ll be launching this collab across all three Colony’s, Main St., Northwoods, and Kits, on Wednesday night January 16th. This is the first time you can try the beer!

Both breweries will be pouring a couple other beers as well so swing by one of the Colony’s on Wednesday and say hi!

Cheers,

Jorden

Blush – Rosé Saison

Rose Beer

Behind the Beer // Blush Rosé Saison

So how did we decide to make a beer that tastes like a glass of sparkling Rosé?

Well, about 9 months ago I was in Nashville Tennessee for the Craft Brewers Conference. A supplier called GEA puts on a party every year full of beers, food, scotch, etc. We walked through the door of the party and Kylo Hoy (Brewer for Four Winds) came up and greeted us. He said “sit down, let me grab you the only thing you need to drink tonight.”

He brought this can over and inside of it was a Rosé Cider. It was one of the more refreshing things I’d tasted. From that moment forward I started to obsess over how we could make a beer taste like Rosé.

Fast forward to September and our friends at West Coast Canning reached out to collaborate on a charity brew as part of their Canned Good initiative. The concept behind this collab is that you can really do anything as the labels are donated, the canning time is at a charity rate, and generally when proceeds of a beer go to a good cause (this time it’s The Camp Kerry Society) many people step up to help!

The rosé beer concept came up once again. Our Head Brewer Eric had the idea that if we timed the brew right we could use some grape skins from our neighbours at Pacific Breeze Winery after they’d crushed them for this year’s batches of wine. We could use a Saison yeast to help finish the beer dry. The next layer would be to can condition it so that it would be almost like drinking sparkling Rosé.

We brewed the beer in November, let it can condition for 6 weeks, and decided to release it today! I don’t think I could have ever anticipated the excitement level behind the beer. This must be what Superflux deals with all the time 😉

Behind the Label // Blush Rosé Saison

I wanted the can to be rose gold in colour. Actually, I originally wanted it to be 3 rose gold labels and 1 gold label but that seemed extreme.

So I sent our designer Sami the concept of the Rosé Saison and the parameters that I just wanted it to be a rose gold colour.

Sami came back to me and asked if we could do each label in each four pack with a slightly different design. Because this collab was with the folks at West Coast Canning I knew we’d have extra hands on deck to sort all the beers out once filled to make sure that when they were packaged each four pack had four unique labels. So I said yes!

Below are the four different designs that will appear on your four pack labels.

Rose Saison

There were a lot of people who helped make this charity brew happen: West Coast Canning, Best Studios, Pacific Breeze Winery, IMS Labels and of course our charity of choice, The Camp Kerry Society!

Looking forward to making this beer again next year!

Cheers,

Jorden