Beer Radar this week: Mini cans at Workhorse, brewery contests and more

No, your hand is not getting bigger. The beer can is shrinking at Workhorse Brewing.

While many breweries are focusing on 16- and even 32-ounce cans, the King of Prussia brewery announced this week it’ll begin distributing 8-ounce cans. It’ll distribute its core portfolio in a variety pack of stubby cans, called Flights To Go, starting this spring.

Workhorse Brewing CEO Dan Hershberg said in an email, “They’re easy to bring on the road (perhaps on the golf course), and with so many craft beers featuring high ABV or strong, aggressive flavors, we think having a smaller portion of a few styles makes sense.”

He said the company will also promote them as a “Craft City Wide Special” for bars, who can pair them with a shot of liquor.

While BudMillerCoors distribute 8-ouncers, so far it’s not a popular option for smaller craft brewers. Workhorse is the first local craft brewery to give it a try. Nationwide, Flat 12 in Indianapolis claims to be the first craft brewer to use the stubby cans, putting its heavy-duty Pinko Russian Imperial Stout in stubbies in 2016.

Years ago, both Rogue and Anchor packaged high-alcohol brews in so-called pony bottles (7 ounces). They were abandoned because of the hassle of constantly switching over packaging lines from small to large bottles. (Retailers hated them, too, because they fall over easily on refrigerator shelves.)

As for beer drinkers who can finish an entire pounder, don’t worry. Workhorse will begin releasing 16-ouncers in March.

MORE ON THE RADAR

Speaking of cans, Flying Fish has a new 15-can variety pack. Three each of HopFish, XPA, Outside IPA, Onshore Lager and Salt & Sea… Coho Brewing (Cape May Court House) is having fun with its criminal justice theme, including felonious beer names (Splatter Pattern, Hazeas Corpus, Court’s in Session pale ale). Now it’s running a Name the Dead Guy contest, presumably referring to the unfortunate fellow laid out in a tasting room chalk outline. Winner gets a t-shirt, so guess away

Braeloch Brewing (Kennett Square) will open March 1, with grand opening festivities March 8-9… Ambler Beer Co. has begun installing equipment at its under-construction location and says It’s on target for a May opening… Earlier this month, I mentioned the Glove Dropper, the Sly Fox/Rivertowne “confrontation” beer that was brewed for Saturday’s Flyers/Penguins Stadium Series. Now Stickman Brews in Royersford has gotten in on the fun with Eat Your Landlord IPA, illustrated with a wild-eyed Gritty…

Weyerbacher, which was reporting some money problems earlier, has opened a new tap room in the Ferry Market in New Hope (Bucks County). It’s open afternoons, Thursday through Sunday… Levante Brewing (West Chester, Chesco) is hiding 5 Golden Tickets in random four-packs of Jolly By Nature, a New England-style Double IPA. Winners get a tour, samples and other treats. (No, you do not win the brewery, Charlie Bucket)…

Brewers of Pennsylvania, the state’s brewers guild, added John Stemler of Free Will Brewing to its board. Artie Tafoya of Appalachian Brewing, one of the board’s long-termers, stepped down. In other BoP news, the guild announced its annual Meeting of the Malts will move to Hershey on April 25. Previously, it had been held in Bethlehem.

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