By: John Koziol
NORTH WOODSTOCK — To keep up with modern times and tastes, the Woodstock Inn Brewery has relaunched its popular and well-known brand with new brews, an edgier look — and cans over bottles.
The rollout will culminate, for folks who are 21 years or age and older, with a free Relaunch Party that will be held at 7 p.m. Friday at the brewery.
Founded in 1996 by Scott and Peggy Rice — who a couple years earlier transformed a former train station on Main Street into the Woodstock Inn — the brewery spent more than a year and $100,000 to come up with the redesign.
“It’s a huge shift for us,” Scott Rice said, which essentially entailed “re-inventing the brewery.”
That said, the brewery will continue making its signature mainstays, Pig’s Ear Brown Ale, Red Rack Ale, 4000 Footer IPA and Woodstock Inn IPA, although the hops additions and yeast strains in them have been changed to reflect the evolving palates of consumers, said brewmaster Frank Heidenreich.
Additionally, the brewery will introduce a dozen new libations, some of which will be available exclusively at the brewery, while others also will be sold at retailers throughout New England.
All of the beers and ales coming out of the brewery will be in aluminum cans whose labels feature new art work and messaging; the brewery will be the only place where the beverages can be purchased in glass bottles.
Rice said the craft-brewing industry has been moving from glass bottles to aluminum cans for several years now. He has previously said that aluminum cans are safer and more convenient to carry by the Woodstock brewery’s active patrons and that, in addition to being readily recyclable, they prevent both light and air from getting inside.
The Woodstock Inn Brewery began the shift to cans in 2014 and shortly thereafter, it was honored for the design of its 4000 Footer IPA can, which was recognized with an Award of Excellence by the International Metal Decorators Association.
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