The Canning Process

Step One // Define, Refine, and Re-Define the Can

In May 2013, we designed a can in 2 hours. Sent the design to Chazzam, printed can sticker labels, and drove kegs down to PDX to fill 16ouncers. We drove back and put stickers on the 50 cans by hand. In that time we learned that refining your idea involves refining it even more and then re-defining it. Go big or go big. Going home was not an option, so we researched and found a can company that fit our mission: Local. Simple. Elegant & Clean. As a team, we decided on Crown. Know what you like. Know what you don’t like.

Step Two // Decide on a Beer Style

You don’t get to choose the pivotal moment that changes everything, but when it happens you'll never forget. In December 2014, Head Brewer Frank Trosset brewed an IPA that stood out. The Batch 15 IPA came from trial and error and it seemed fitting to name it after the amount of batches brewed. It joined the ranks of our Flagship Series and as a team we all agreed that this would be the first beer to go into cans. We had the beer, now we needed the can. 

 Step Three // Can Proof Gauntlet

This is the most grueling and longest part of the process. Who knew? The Anatomy of the Can starts and ends with as much trial and error an Art Director can humanly take. After 64 can proofs, back-and-forth e-mails and a laundry list of minor to major adjustments, we all agreed it was perfect. We couldn’t have done it without the most talented Art Director in the world: Austin Martin.  On May 4th we signed off on the final can proof and 11 days later 204,000 matte black and neon green Aslan Batch 15 IPA cans showed up!  

Step Four // Brew the Beer

There are two types of brewing stories, tragedies & comedies. Whether it’s on a small-scale home brew system or large-scale brewery production line. Anything can happen. The process of brewing a double batch of beer that goes directly into cans for the first time was thankfully, not a tragedy. Everything went as planned with a team effort of milling, mashing, boiling and transferring. By 2PM friends and family started trickling in, loopy and a little tired we realized how far we’ve come with all the funny trials and errors that got us here. After making a double batch of IPA, we ordered 2 more 45bbl fermenters, grabbed a pint and reminisced. We are incredibly thankful to all our supporters, friends, and family that helped along the way.  

Step Five // Can the Beer

We wanted to can our beer from the very beginning and it was a quest that started from the moment we opened the brewery. The desire of taking a can to-go, the ability to compete on a national level, and selling beer in far-to-reach places all had the same common denominator: Adventure. Over the past year we learned that the level of quality control in any craftwork comes down to strategy and preparation. And, like packing for a trip you always remain a little suspended in disbelief that this is really happening. The process of canning was mesmerizing, from empty cans to full, to capped, rinsed, packaged, stacked and counted. We packed over 500 cases and it was no coincidence that the first 15 cases went directly to our in-house cooler where they would start their adventure.