Big Punisher Can Design
In case you didn’t make it out to the brewery for the Logo Reveal Night, here’s the logo for Big Punisher, which will also be our first canned beer! If you’re into nerdy process stuff, keep reading. If not, just sit there and enjoy the logo. You can practically smell those citrusy hops!
We get asked (and rightfully so), “When are you guys bottling or canning?”. The answer, we hope, is sometime in late August. We’re going to start with only the Big Punisher, but will (hopefully) quickly expand to canning Welcome to Scoville as well. We are also talking about canning one other seasonal beer at a time.
Why is it taking us so long to move to cans, you ask? The short story is that, for a small brewery like ours, it takes about 4 months to go from the “Hey, let’s can this beer” moment to actually having beer in cans. Here’s a brief summary of how it goes:
1) Figure out canning logistics. Since we don’t yet own a canning line, we struck a deal with Matt and Ashley over at River City Cannery to provide mobile canning services.
2) Figure out which beer to can. We picked Big Punisher because we felt that it fills a void in the market for a big, smooth, citrusy double IPA. I can’t say that I’ve tasted much like it, and we hope to share it with more people via the more portable cans.
3) Design a can. We worked with Bill Green over at Bill Green Studios to come up with this fine design. Bill is the guy behind all of the “Lebowski Fest” artwork, and he might be the one person who loves The Big Lebowski more than we do.
4) Get the can design approved by the TTB (the part of the Federal Government that approves alcoholic beverage labels).
5) Send the design to the can manufacturer. We are using cans from Crown Cork, so we had to follow the guidelines set forth here: http://www.crowncork.com/beveragerequirements
6) Make corrections based on the can manufacturer’s recommendations/mandates.
7) Wait for the can company to send a PDF-based can proof.
8) Approve the PDF proof (or ask them to change things if it’s not right).
9) Wait for the can company to send a real-life proof in the form of a sample can.
10) Approve the can proof (or ask them to change things if it’s not right).
11) Wait for the can company to make the nearly 100,000 cans that constitute our minimum order. Start trying to figure out how to pay for all those cans, and where to store them 🙂
12) Once the cans come in, try to schedule Matt’s crew to come in and can some Big Punisher. Also schedule a brew of Big Punisher to be fully filtered, carb’d, and taken down to 31 degrees F on the day that Matt and his team are coming in. This is also the time we’ll be giving our distributors the heads-up that canned Big Punisher is nearly here.
13) Produce the beer
14) Can the beer
15) Get the beer to the distributors
16) Distributors get the beer to retailers
17) Consumers buy the cans from the retailers
Right now we’re between steps 7 and 8. Our best math right now says that we should have cans in our brewery by the end of August. Once that happens, the other hurdles will be jumped quickly.
So there you have it. The story of Big Punisher in cans!