It’s hard not to judge a book by it’s cover. The same goes for beer. As beer gets infinitely more creative, so has the artwork that goes along with it. Atlanta’s Second Self Beer didn’t just brew a great beer and slap a label on it. Manic Pixie Dream is a “next level” kind of collaboration.
This story starts a bit before the beer was brewed. Brewery co-founder Jason Santamaria has been a fan of Keith P. Rein’s artwork for a while. The guy is best known for the Slaughterhouse Starlets Series. Basically, he takes famous females like Winona Ryder or Taylor Swift and juxtaposes them into a murdery, Dexter-like composition. When Santamaria married his wife Liz, he noticed Keith P. Rein to be the dominant in each other’s art collection.
All Santamaria needed was a good reason to reach out to is favorite artist. As it turns out, Rein has always wanted to do a piece for a beer can. Manic Pixie Dream was born.
The Second Self team went big when it comes to the beer. The base is an 11% alcohol by volume Russian imperial stout, that has been aged in Blis barrels. The mere mention of Blis will make a beer fan salivate. Blis Gourment is a Michigan based company that ages maple syrup in bourbon barrels. After the maple syrup is drained, what you have left is a playground for one hell of an awesome beer. As an added bonus, Second Self infused locally roasted Batdorf & Bronson coffee.
Santamaria and Rein weren’t satisfied with just creating one label. Especially with a beer as complex as this one. Blis barrels are hard to come by, and recipes like this one are expensive. Ultimately, this beer is in short supply. Created simply for your own happiness. A bit like the Manic Pixie Dream Girl movie trope.
Coined in 2005 by film critic Nathan Rabin after watching Kirsten Dunst’s character in Elizabethtown, MPDG is a “bubbly, shallow cinematic creature that exists solely in the fevered imaginations of sensitive writer-directors to teach broodingly soulful young men to embrace life and its infinite mysteries and adventures.” Other examples include Kate Hudson’s character in Almost Famous, Natalie Portman in Garden State, or Marilyn Monroe in Some Like it Hot.
With Manic Pixie Dream in mind, Rein drew four different iterations of Pixie. Each label breaks out a component of the beer – Coffee, Maple Syrup, Bourbon, and Grains. Besides the incredible artwork, the beer is fantastic. Truly a sipper, where the each of the components starts to pop as the beer warms. After the barrel-aging, you’re drinking at near 14% alcohol by volume beer.
Second Self is holding a special release event on February 26th where attendees can purchase all four cans. The brewery is planning on making Manic Pixie Dream a series going forward, with an evolving list of styles (including a sour/wild ale).
This is one of the few times we have found ourselves torn between the beer or the artwork that’s more exciting. A few more sips and we might just decide.
Just in time for the Atlanta Falcon’s Super Bowl appearance, Atlanta will get to sip Second Self A.T. aLe for the first time.
In case you haven’t figured it out, Second Self Beer Company calls Atlanta home, just miles from The Georgia Dome. Second Self A.T. aLe is an unfiltered hoppy pale ale, perfect for 4 quarters of big game watching.
Officially launching in March, it’s CRISP, CLEAN, REFRESHING, and something you’ll love to drink in every season.
Fans can catch a sneak peek of Second Self A.T. aLe on February 5th at the brewery. 12 ounce cans will be available starting in March, 2017.
Style: Pale Ale
Availability: 12oz Cans, Draft. Year-round.
Debut: March, 2017
5.7% ABV, 42 IBUS
Heartbroken? Just love chocolate? Second Self Bleeding Heart Red Ale has you covered either way.
Cocoa and vanilla are the stars in Second Self Bleeding Heart, Inspired by southern-style red velvet cake. 2017 is the first time this beer has been canned.
Red malts and cocoa lend the beer a festive pink color, and the vanilla is the icing on top, rounding out each sip at the end of the taste. Co-founders Jason and Chris have been developing the recipe for over eight years.
Bleeding Heart is actuall part of series of “Hearts” series. Other releases have included:
- Bitter Heart – Red Ale, extensively dry hopped. Extra hoppy, extra bitter. The real Valentine’s Day beer.
- Wild Heart – Red Ale, gone sour.
Second Self Bleeding Heart is available in 12 ounce cans and draft through February, 2017.
6.9% ABV, 27 IBUs
PIC: Beer Street Journal
Second Self Maverick & Gose is a new canned offering, coming May 1st.
The Atlanta based brewery has been using Toucan Mobile Canning service for their first can beers. Now the brewery has purchased a canning line, and will bring the operation in-house.
Second Self Maverick & Gose will be one of the first beers off that new line. A traditional gose brewed with fresh coriander, and a Top Gun theme.
…a traditional Gose includes fresh CORIANDER and DRY HOPPED with Wakatu hops to balance out the slightly TART and SALTY nature of this fun beer.
Second Self Maverick & Gose will be a 12 ounce can and draft offering, just in time for pool season.
4.4% ABV, 8 IBUS
Second Self Smoked IPA releases on August 1st, 2015.
Perfect for grilling season and designed to tap into the “7th taste” – smoke, balanced by the hoppiness of IPA.
Article will be updated closer to launch.
Second Self Gose releases July 1st, 2015.
a refreshing beer made for the beach. Traditional Gose flavors: sea salt, coriander, tartness from natural lactic acid, and ginger for balance.
Article will be updated prior to launch.
Second Self Xmas in July. a “Christmas-style” Belgian beer designed for summer days. This light and citrusy brew is made with coriander, orange peel, cloves, ginger, and pink peppercorns.
Arrives July 1st, 2015.
Article will be updated prior to launch.