(Longmont, CO) – Colorado-based Oskar Blues Brewery and Indiana-based Sun King Brewery have created a CANlaboration project to unite the brewer’s friendship and passion for pushing the boundaries of craft beer in a can.
The two brewers have traveled between locations for months and are excited to bring you CHAKA, a limited-release Belgian-style ale — the first craft beer to be packaged in the Alumi-Tek® re-sealable pint bottle from Ball Corporation. CHAKA will be released May 3rd 2012, at the Craft Brewers Conference in San Diego in each attendee’s hotel room and special events throughout the weekend. The following week the brewers will make limited quantities at Oskar Blues Tasty Weasel and in Sun King’s home market.
The connection between these two breweries is deeper than the fact that they both can their beer. Oskar Blues head brewer, Dave Chichura, began his professional brewing career in Indianapolis fifteen years ago where he became friends with Dave Colt and Clay Robinson, the two brewers who created Sun King. The three friends have been talking for years about working together on a collaborative beer, so when the opportunity came to assist in the introduction of a new packaging option for craft beer, it was an easy yes.
The end result is an 8 percent A.B.V. Belgian-style ale crafted with a blend of ingredients from each brewery’s home state: Shagbark Hickory syrup from Hickoryworks in Trafalgar, Ind.; grain from Colorado Malting Company; and a special yeast blend from Brewing Science Institute, also in Colorado. Brewers from both breweries worked together to formulate the recipe and traveled between Colorado and Indiana to brew at both locations. (Image attached of the three brewers brewing CHAKA in Lyons, CO)
“Until we undertook this project, only large breweries and beverage companies had access to this type of packaging,” said Clay Robinson, Sun King co-founder. “Sun King and Oskar Blues worked closely with the Ball Corporation and Cask Brewing Systems to design and build a simple, functional small scale system that will allow craft brewers to take advantage of this unique packaging option.”
Oskar Blues is a pioneer in the craft canning movement as the first American craft brewery to can their beer with the release of Dale’s Pale Ale in 2002. They have grown to become the largest American craft brewery to package beer exclusively in cans, producing 59,000 barrels of beer in 2011.
Sun King began crafting beer in the summer of 2009 and has grown to become one of Indiana’s largest breweries, producing nearly 10,000 barrels of beer in 2011. Sun King was the first Indiana craft brewery to can their beer and the first brewery ever to create a customizable can for their seasonal and specialty beer releases.
“Unique packaging like the Alumi-Tek bottle provides both Oskar Blues and Sun King the differentiation we need to make our limited-release beers and B.Stiff & Sons Old Fashioned Root Beer (Oskar Blues Brewery) distinct from our core lines.” said Chad Melis, marketing director of Oskar Blues Brewery. “Craft beer in aluminum bottles is another step forward in the evolution of craft beer.”
CHAKA will be available in limited supply at Oskar Blues locations and to-go via The Tasty Weasel Taproom in $15.99 6-packs. You can get your hands on CHAKA and meet the brewers from both breweries at the below Craft Brewers Conference events in San Diego:
Wednesday May 2nd 9pm – BLIND LADY ALE HOUSE Can Diego Event – Featuring Canned Craft Beer from 6 Industry leading Breweries
Thursday May 3rd 7pm – TIPSY CROW CHAKA After Party – CHAKA plus Barrel Aged offerings from Oskar Blues Brewery.
About Oskar Blues Brewery
Founded by Dale Katechis in 1997 as a brewpub and grill, Oskar Blues Brewery launched their craft-brewed beer canning operations in 2002 in Lyons, Colo. They were the first American craft brewery to can their beer. Today more than 173 craft breweries are canning their beers. The original crew used a hand-canning line on a tabletop machine that sealed one can at a time. Oskar Blues Brewery in Longmont packaged 41,000 barrels in 2010 and grew to 59,000 in 2011. Visit www.oskarblues.com/ for more information.
About Sun King Brewing Company
Sun King Brewing Company is the brainchild of Dave Colt and Clay Robinson. With the help of family and friends – Omar Robinson, Andy Fagg and Steve Koers – the first keg of Sun King beer rolled out the door for delivery in July 2009. Sun King is the first full-scale production brewery in Indianapolis since Indianapolis Brewing Company closed its doors in 1948. Now available on tap and in cans at hundreds of locations around central Indiana, Sun King has grown into the third-largest beer brewer in the state of Indiana. The company’s commitment to handcrafted seasonal and specialty beers has been rewarded with multiple medals at the Indiana Brewers Cup, Great American Beer Festival and World Beer Cup competitions. Visit www.sunkingbrewing.com for more information.