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Cheers to a festive beer

Home-grown microbrewery Trouble Brewing teams up with illustrator @feedbeng to design a bottle for the Year of the Dog

Instead of a traditional pair of oranges, how about gifting a festive pair of beer bottles this Chinese New Year?

Home-grown craft beer microbrewery Trouble Brewing has teamed up with local illustrator @feedbeng for a specially designed bottle which contains beer styles such as its Summer Ale, Dutch Pilsner and American Pale Ale.

All the beers are freshly produced at its microbrewery facility in Tuas, which is also home to some of the big boys of the brewing world such as Asia Pacific Breweries.

The bottle labels, which are a nod to the Year of the Dog, come emblazoned with the cheeky design of a dog in a lion dance costume chasing its own tail.

The $18.88 price of the beer pairs includes delivery to the recipients’ doorstep and can be pre-ordered now via campaign.troublebrewing.com/c/CNY. They will be delivered between Feb 12 and 15, just in time for the Chinese New Year celebrations.

The collaboration is among the first few major projects for Trouble Brewing, which was established last November by founder and chief executive officer Joseph Barratt. It offers a service, through troublebrewing.com, which allows customers to personalise and customise everything about their beer, from the beer inside the bottle to the label outside and the colour of the bottle cap.

“The craft beer world has a lot of beer snobs and we’re trying to be the complete opposite of that, so our focus is on drinkability,” says Mr Barratt, 32, who also runs a public relations and content marketing agency.

The New Zealander is a journalist- turned-entrepreneur who moved to Singapore in 2010. He started experimenting with home brewing while he was in university and says he wanted to provide fully customisable yet sessionable lowin- alcohol beers for everything from house parties to special celebrations such as weddings.

Helmed by master brewer Gregg Speirs, their current range of lagers, ales, pilsners and stouts includes everything from a blonde ale to a dry stout.

“You can customise the beer as much as you want and be actively involved in the process, so you can make it super hoppy if you wanted to,” says Mr Barratt. “If you want specific hops and we don’t have them on hand, we can bring them in too.”

The beers are brewed in “a pressurised fermentation system that allows you to do micro-brews in 50-litre batches”, he adds.

Other than the beer style, one can also personalise the label with one’s company logo, an illustration or a quote. There is typically a twoweek turnaround period to deliver the custom beers.

It costs $199 a case for one to three cases of 24 bottles each. The price drops to $100 a case if more than 42 cases are ordered. The greater the quantity ordered, the lower the per-case price.

Trouble Brewing also sells beer by the keg. For larger-scale events, it can provide a “kegerator” or a fridge that can keep your beer cold and dispense it, or even a bar setup. Pricing varies from $220 a keg for one to four kegs, to $175 a keg for more than 100 kegs.

In addition to one-off orders, it also provides a subscription service that will deliver regular batches of beer.

Last month, it worked with urban artist Samantha Lo, or Sticker Lady as she is more widely known, for the launch of her art exhibition Progress – The Game Of Leaders. The customised beer bottles, filled with Trouble Brewing’s pilsner and summer ale, featured custom labels which she had designed.

Already, the company is in talks to bring its model to other markets. “It’s quite an efficient style of brewing, so we’re looking at metropolitan areas such as New York, Canada and Hong Kong,” Mr Barratt says.

“We’ve already secured enough contracts that we’ll have more than a million dollars in sales in our first year.”


More festive beer deals

Here are other Chinese New Year beer deals to snag in time for the festivities.

CARLSBERG

Pick up premiums such as trolley bags and speakers when you buy Carlsberg from supermarkets and convenience stores.

With every purchase of a 24-can pack of Carlsberg, recommended retail price (RRP) of $55.30, at supermarkets until Feb 28, or till stocks last, customers are entitled to a trolley bag in red or a limitededition camouflage print.

Alternatively, the purchase of a 28-can pack (RRP of $59.50) comes with a $5 voucher for Bee Cheng Hiang products.

A six-pack of Carlsberg (RRP of $16.40) at 7-Eleven convenience stores comes with a Carlsberg Smooth Draught cushion, while a 12-pack Carlsberg carton (RRP of $28.25) at Cheers and Caltex comes with a Carlsberg Smooth Draught speaker.

TIGER BEER

Collaborating with Singaporean artist Dawn Ang, also known as Aeropalmics, home-grown Tiger Beer has released a limited-edition 24-can pack (from $53.50) and a 30-can festive pack design (from $66.50).

Layering images and textures of festive symbols such as firecrackers, lanterns and a dog for the Year of the Dog, the packs are available at major supermarkets and convenience stores.

GUINNESS


The 10-can pack of Guinness Foreign Extra Stout is also available in a limited-edition Chinese New Year design (above) in supermarkets and hypermarkets from $33, while stocks last. PHOTO: GUINNESS

Sometimes known by its other moniker Ang Ji Gao, or Red Tongued Dog, Guinness is celebrating the Year of the Dog by releasing three T-shirts designed with local artists Rachele Ho, Larry Peh and Band of Doodlers.

Every purchase of a Guinness CNY Bundle at RedMart at $78.90 comes with a 24-can pack of Guinness Foreign Extra Stout as well as one of the limited-edition T-shirts. All proceeds from the sale of the Tshirts will go to the local animal welfare group, Exclusively Mongrels.

The 10-can pack of Guinness Foreign Extra Stout is also available in a limited-edition Chinese New Year design in supermarkets and hypermarkets from $33, while stocks last.

HEINEKEN

Get Heineken beers and a limitededition, stainless-steel cooler box delivered to up to two locations of your choice from now until Feb 28.

The delivery option comes with every purchase of $150 and above of Heineken products in a single transaction via festive.giv.one. These include six-can packs, 20-can packs and Heineken threefor-$ 25 draughts, which are only redeemable at Heineken at Quay 18 @ Lau Pa Sat till Feb 28, from 4 to 10.30pm daily.


Correction note: In an earlier version of this story, it was stated that Trouble Brewing founder Joseph Barratt is 33, and that the brews were helmed by Barnaby Murdoch. This is incorrect.

A version of this article appeared in the print edition of The Sunday Times on February 04, 2018, with the headline 'Cheers to a festive beer'. Print Edition | Subscribe