There is a first time for everything, and Firestone Walker Brewing Co. will be proving that adage next month.
The Paso Robles, Calif.-based brewery has announced that it will begin canning three of its most popular beers for the first time: Union Jack IPA (7.5 percent ABV), Easy Jack IPA (4.5 percent ABV) and Pivo pilsner (5.3 percent ABV). The new canning line was made by Dortmund, Germany-based beer packaging company KHS.
“We could have rushed into canning a few years ago, but we wanted the timing to be right,” said Firestone Walker co-proprietor David Walker, in a press release. “The market for canned craft beer is now hitting its stride, and canning technology has come a long way in a short period. Also, cans are a perfect fit for life here on the Central Coast.”
According to the brewery, the canning line was first used last year to produce cans for the brewery’s 805 blonde ale, and are purged with CO2 before being filled. Running at full speed, the canning line can fill 400 12-ounce cans per minute.
“It was the best—and most expensive—solution,” said Matt Brynildson, brewmaster at Firestone Walker. “You can make the best beer in the world, but if you run it through a substandard packaging line, you end up with a beer-wrecking machine.”
All three canned beers will be packaged in six packs of 12-ounce cans, and will be available across Firestone Walker’s entire distribution footprint starting in mid-February.