Fourpure Brewing Co's Head of Marketing Adrian Lugg has six years’ experience working at craft breweries both back in Australia and here in the UK. He can often be found at a table in the tap room working my way through all 16 taps all in the name of research, and tells us why the humble beer can is making a comeback
My nan is 93, my pop has long since passed and she hasn't touched a drop in well over 20 years, still every time I go and visit she has a couple of lonely cans of beer in the back of the fridge.
It's always the same, a jar of cauliflower pickle, a bowl of stewed rhubarb and those sad, lonely beers. It's not the kind of stuff you like to drink, she probably picked them up for 60p three years ago when she was at the off license buying chocolate digestives, but in the art of preparation, beer is always an essential.
Nan’s fridge has been my perception of canned beer since I was a lad, but the times they are a changing. Craft brewers are popping up everywhere, and with them comes change and innovation; not only in the beers we drink but the way they are packaged and presented to thirsty drinkers.
There are a number of advantages to canning beer, some practical, some more aesthetic. The practical reasons are for the most part to do with quality, brewers are using exciting new hops pack full of floral and tropical flavours and aromas, the problem is that over time these qualities degrade, affected by both oxygen and light.
In theory, cans keep the bad stuff out making your beer fresher and tastier, they’re lighter, better for the environment (if that’s your thing) and you can shove them in your fancy Swedish backpack on the evening commute and they won’t break.
Brewing is no longer just about the beer, it has become a sort of creative art form, brewers take inspiration from craftsmen and women across different industries, they regularly collaborate with the likes of chefs and artists and rock stars. To stand out on cluttered shelves and showcase your creative prowess, a can gives you lots of space to make that Tate Modern / Peter Saville collab design really pop.
The beers going into the cans are almost as colourful and creative as the designs themselves. Often driven by season and always chasing new trends, beer styles move faster than Johnny Vegas on a chip shop run. Recent trends have seen a spate of highly quaffable darks in the form of milk and coffee Stouts and Porters, American style IPA’s (India Pale Ales) and Double IPA’s are being juiced up with every form of citrus imaginable, fruit sours and European inspired lagers are also getting a good run.
Last year Bermondsey brewery Fourpure released an attractive looking 500ml Citrus IPA can with the onomatopoeic nomenclature Juicebox. This summer they took it on tour and thirsty fans turned up in droves to sample the wares and meet the brewers.
Cans are the future so fill your festival kit full of the tin stuff and get drinking.
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