Conflict and creativity produce great beer. At least that’s the philosophy David Walker and Adam Firestone put into practice at their miniature, state-of-the-art, experimental brewery called the Propagator. It’s also the reason why the label designed for Fortem – an unfiltered New England-style double IPA and the first beer released in the brewery’s Leo v. Ursus Chronology of Beers – features a new rendering of the bear and lion poised for battle.
Firestone Walker is best known for Union Jack IPA, Pivo Pils and Luponic Distortion. Fans of these and other FW beers know that the lion and the bear represent the brewery’s founders. Firestone, a native Californian, is the bear. (There’s a bear on California’s state flag.) And Walker, who hails from the United Kingdom, is the lion. (The lion is a cherished symbol of England.)
“Adam and David are brothers-in-law. They are close and get along, but our brewery culture is founded upon a healthy tension that has always existed between them,” says Firestone Walker spokesperson Jamie C. Smith. “The imagery of the lion and the bear captures the beneficial conflict that exists between these two. David and Adam are always in pursuit of the perfect beer. They each have strong opinions and are willing to experiment and revise beer recipes until they have made the best beer possible. The Propagator is the perfect incubator for them to make exciting, innovative beers.”
Fortem, Latin for The Strong, is the first release in a chronology of beers developed at the Propagator. “Until the Propagator came along, our ability to experiment and go crazy with tiny batches was limited,” says Firestone Walker’s Brewmaster Matt Brynildson. “Here we can be creative with a host of new hop cultivars. This is a new chapter for us. We will go to our graves wishing we had made the perfect beer – but we will give it our best shot with Leo v. Ursus.”