Tuesday, November 18, 2008
New Tap Handles Inspired by New Belgium's Bike Culture
New Belgium Brewing has retooled their tap handles for the first time in seventeen years!
New Belgium, the makers of Fat Tire Amber Ale, have announced that they're replacing their 17-year-old bar tap handles with a svelte, new bike rim-inspired handle. New Belgium will swap out more than 25,000 handles across nineteen states in the next three months. Old handles will be brought back to the brewery and repurposed for retail display and signage. New Belgium believes the new tap handles will better represent their respect for the bike culture.
"The new handle perfectly blends form and function in an environment that is often times more than a little visually assaulting," said Brian Kruger, Sales Co-Pilot at New Belgium Brewing. "We found local sources that could manufacture our vision and bring it life. Now, where wood, enamel and big bulbous heads reign supreme, we will enter a slender, aluminum bike rim that reflects New Belgium – literally."
The handle includes a New Belgium Brewing logo reflector and is made to represent a bike rim, complete with spoke holes and recessed edges. New Belgium wanted to use Colorado companies for the artistic execution and turned to Heritage Die Casting out of Denver and U.S. Precision Mold in Arvada to produce the one-of-a-kind creations.
"I think it's neat to see this whole process taking place right here in Colorado for a Colorado company," said Gregg Bannick, with Heritage Die Casting. "I am incredibly proud of the final product. Creation of this bar handle involved some intricate work with pretty elaborate tools, but we wanted to make New Belgium's vision a reality."
"In the end, a tap handle is primarily meant to inform the consumer what is being poured, while also representing who you are as a company," continued Krueger. "Our new handle is simple, clean, and direct and it's 100 percent a representation of who we are."
Catch the Amazing Race-style, no-holds barred, winner-takes-all battle royale as Team New Belgium rolls out the first new handles in their own hometown in this three minute video.