Behold - today’s beer course focused on the marketing and branding of Calicraft Brewery, a “small” contract brewery based out of Walnut Creek. This brewery is small…for now. Draft Magazine named Calicraft a “Brewery to Watch” in 2013, just one whopping year after opening its doors in May 2012. They brewed approximately 5k barrels this last year, which is a crazy amount of beer for a two-year start up without a taproom (yet). But, Calicraft thinks outside-the-box. They are not in the business to replicate a style. Rather, they want to put their own spin on everything they produce, keeping in mind their core values. Calicraft’s founder Blaine Landberg’s first brew, Buzzerkeley, didn’t even fit a true beer style when he started brewing 15 years ago in his UC Berkeley dorm room. An ale fermented in Belgian and…wait for it….champagne yeast, Buzzerkeley was already not your normal beer.
As proclaimed by Calicraft themselves, “Buzzerkeley is beer meets wine.” At 7% ABV, this beer goes down smooth. It starts off with your typical fruity Belgian ale flavors but ends with a surprisingly sparkly finish. Well, maybe not so surprising since the beer is actually packaged to look like champagne (#genius). I’d call it a beer lover’s mimosa or at least a dope bottle to bring to a dinner party.