Re-posted from my blog: Malted Musings.
The great thing about beer is that there are so many ways to enjoy it. There's the look of the beer, the smell, and (of course) the taste. But how often do we ignore perhaps the most obvious part of beer --as in its receptacle? Is it in a can, bottle, or a growler? A 12 oz? 16 oz? A 750 ml? More often then not the size and shape of the receptacle will speak volumes (haha) about what liquid lies within. Despite all of this: the label (or print on a can) is what gives you your first impression of the beer you are about to enjoy. And with that I'm proud to start my look at what I consider to be some of the coolest labels currently out in the Connecticut beer market.
I'm going to start with one brewery whose labels I love across the board: Relic Brewing Co. Though many CT breweries have interesting, understated, or otherwise "cool" labels, I believe that Relic, by far, has some of the most striking and immediately interesting
As Mark Sigman (owner and head brewer of Relic) has an extensive background in advertising it should be no surprise that his labels can seemingly persuade you to purchase his beer even if you have no idea what's in the bottle. He has experience in selling products and (whether we acknowledge it or not) beer is liquid product that we buy stock in every time we pick up some bottles.
So what makes these labels so great anyway? In my opinion what Mark has done excellently with his branding, is that he has struck a fine balance between colorful, witty, and serious. The sharp color is important because these bottles will pop out on shelves, drawing the customer's eye in. What's more, with the fine color and careful composition, one feels like they're purchasing a work of art. These are the types of bottles that people save mostly due to the "coolness" of the label; in other words this is the type of label that looks great in someone's personal beer room, evokes interest, and serves as a conversation starter ('Where'd THAT beer come from?').
Moreso than anything else, Mark has really nailed the wit of a good beer label. Not uproarious laughter or deadly serious, but somewhere in the middle: the labels just ooze an intangible hip factor that almost calls out to you from the package store shelves. I have nothing against humorous OR very serious, utilitarian labels, but I feel like Mark has developed a look that could easily be put on canvas and hung on a wall. At least that's what I think, I suppose it could just be that I REALLY like dogs dressed up as humans, which is always a possibility.
Relic always posts their labels (and other goodness) on their Facebook, so go check it out! In other news, Relic's two year's anniversary is also coming up on 2/26 so keep your eyes peeled for future events based around that: here on my blog and over here on Relic's website. Got a CT beer label you think is great, funny, or interesting? Let me know on Twitter, Facebook, and G+ for more local beer events.