By Anita Smith
The bright green hue isn’t the only new thing about this label – there are cameos from brewery employees and friends, along with other hidden gems. The Shape of Hops to Come is a beer you want to take the time to truly savor, not just in taste, but in packaging.
The beer pays homage to the Swedish rock band The Refused and its 1988 hit album, The Shape of Punk to Come. That’s why the label sports a band of characters including a neon green hop musician. Neshaminy Creek co-owner Jeremy Myers, label illustrator J.P. Flexner and other Neshaminy Creek employees are all huge fans of the band. Flexner explained, “I think on some level, that record shifted the landscape of the niche music scene in which it was released. Punk rock was pretty rigid in its approach, and when [The] Refused released a record to critical acclaim that used samples and orchestration and all kinds of unconventional tracking and recording techniques, it was a game changer. This beer, in many ways, was a game changer for us.”
Other Neshaminy Creek labels are getting a revamp, too. “The last several years have taught us a lot about what we make and why we make it, and each one of these new designs is a little piece of that story,” noted Flexner. “They are as personal and relevant to us as they are irreverent and colorful to anyone. We want our customers to have fun drinking from these cans! We want them to have something to look at and think about while they enjoy our beers. There are hidden details and all kinds of things for people to see on each label. Heck, I even hid our co-owner Steve Capelli’s actual cell phone number on one of the labels. Someone out there could totally find that and, say, text him weird messages in the middle of the night.” (Lucky him!)
Anita Smith is a freelance writer and editor. In addition to writing for Draught Lines Magazine, she is also an executive editor of Chilled Magazine. Anita grew up in Delaware County and has a Communications degree from West Chester University. She currently lives in Norristown with her husband and three cats.