Mirror Image Brewing, Wynkoop Brewing, Phantom Canyon Brewing, and Fermly
The ambiance of a brewery can never be underestimated in creating an environment to indulge in craft beer. In the case of Wynkoop Brewing Company, curated exhibits would be set-up on their second floor to give variety, lit mostly by billiard lights and the euphoria of inebriation. The last exhibit commissioned was tin-type photography of local craft brewers including, but not limited to, James Howat of Black Project Spontaneous and Wild Ales, Tim Myers of Strange Craft Beer Co, and Danny Wang of CAUTION: Brewing. For an exhibit that was supposed to be switched out regularly, 2014 seems a long time ago…
The lore of how or why this portrait came to be has been lost as employees are now mildly confused as to why there is a giant framed photo of some guy. No name for artist or subject partnering it, the portrait seems a forgotten relic, an homage to a world and brewery that no longer exist.
Except for the brewer still does! Danny Wang, co-founder of Fermly, a beer quality lab located in Denver, is still a frequent visitor to Wynkoop Brewing. The discovery of the subject of the mystery portrait is always met with amusement, but on Day of Darks, one of Wynkoop's most beloved beer events, the twinge of an idea began for a beer over Mirror Image Brewing’s Nocturnal Black DIPA.
So began the story of “Forgotten Portrait,” a malt liquor with mandarin oranges and kumquats, brewed by sister brewpubs Wynkoop Brewing Co. and Phantom Canyon Brewing Co., GABF medal-winning Mirror Image Brewing, and Fermly.
Inspired by the medium of art and the history of beer, this particular collaboration for Colorado Brewers Guild’s Collaboration Fest is more than just an inside joke amongst brewing friends. Tintype photography was widest used in the 1860s and 1870s but still stuck around over the following century as a novelty. Not causally, but amusingly, consumption of beer doubled in popularity from 1860 to 1870 over the previous decade. Malt liquor became significantly more popular due to the low cost as well as the increasing (German and Irish) immigrant population that had different tastes.
Malt liquor, in more modern times, has taken on a different kind of respect well known to paper bags and duck tape. “Edward Fortyhands” seemed like a good idea last night, right? Well, Collab Fest attendees, get ready for “Edward Tasterhands!” This malt liquor swings in at 9.32% with a tropical citrus vibe that echoes awkward college experiences that result in even more awkward mornings. Clearly, not a sober concept dreamed up by Theresa and Steve Schirner of Mirror Image Brewing, Charles McManus of Phantom Canyon, Todd Bellmyer of Wynkoop, and Danny and Emily Wang of Fermly, this beer will help you forget more things than that blurry selfie the next morning.
“Forgotten Portrait” will be poured on April 2nd at Collaboration Fest, taking place at the Fillmore Auditorium, as well as available on tap at Mirror Image Brewing’s Frederick taproom.