Without any prior knowledge, it would have been easy for me to imagine this sort of affair would have been staffed by spokes-models in tight shorts and revealing tops with double-entendre slogans about lemons. After all this is a lifestyle beer* and we do live in the age of Breastaurants.
You're with me on this, right? Hypothetically this could have been a private event at a Dos Gringo Trailer Park, with beer chicas handing out free bottle openers, pouring us up a coldie and a nudging us over to the lime wedge station for an education on "rimology". Perhaps there would be a green screen surfing video booth with up-link to facebook. That certainly would have been by the book.
It wasn't that. And thank you, Pacifico for not falling into that trap.
It was low-key. I don't think you would have guessed it was a promotion for anything other than a good time featuring live local artitsts, a DJ and freshly prepared food. I counted perhaps 3 people wearing any Pacifico gear. This was a house party BBQ on Roosevelt.
Adventures on Tap team travelling through the 5 cities where Pacifico on tap will be introduced. Music, food, art and exploring the local community were all critical pieces in the series of events. Each city will be chronicled by an artist using a Sankey keg as their canvas.
Brooke Grucella will be working on the keg representing Phoenix. She is a craft beer aficionado based in Tucson who enjoys a Mexican beer now and again. She's experimented with the kegs and is really excited about the project and using stainless steel as a medium. Look for a possible project from her in conjunction with ASH in the not too distant future. We'll let you know when her keg is completed.
Unfortunately, almost all of the video we shot was dark. But you can see the group mural painted with Lalo Cota and Joshua Rhodes. Watching these artists work, listening to the DJ and the outstanding street tacos held our attention and kept us out late on a school night.
For some beer value, I sought out Steve from Crown Importers based in Chicago. We discussed the duopoly that is Mexican Beer and what Pacifico on tap hopes to accomplish. Essentially every major brand out of Mexico has been subsumed by either FEMSA (Dos Equis, Tecate) or Grupo Modelo (Corona, Pacifico, Modelo). He didn't see Pacifico vying for any craft or local beer handles in Phoenix, but we did talk about recent craft entrants into the Mexican import market space like Ska Mexican Logger and Big Sky Mexican Lager.
Overall, it was a great event that probably wasn't a budget breaker. I hope to see other breweries take note on how they can better work more people into the beer community. I suspect that since craft competes on flavor, they often ignore other aspects of the experience of enjoying beer. This is really a shame, because there is so much more history and tradition that craft breweries can pass along.
*Lifestyle beer- a beer that doesn't compete on flavor. These beers compete on image, association with sports, exotic locale, gimmicky packaging (vortex, blue mountains), or other non-flavor components (cold).