It got a few Rhinegeist fans (and Castle Island fans) pretty excited when the Cincinnati powerhouse teamed up to brew a beer with the young, Boston-based Castle Island. The excitement only continued to build momentum when we heard that the collaboration was going to be a 8.5%, 50 IBU juice bomb of a NE IPA that they ended up calling ‘Feeling Good’. The beer is obviously the subject of this label approval that just slid it’s way across my desk this week – and I thought you’d be happy to know that we just might be seeing a bit more of it on shelves and in fridges across Cincy soon.
Let’s talk about the beer first…
About Feeling Good
Feeling Good used a light malty base of 2-Row, Pilsner and Wheat to build up the soft body that fans of the style have come to love, while they hit it with a massive dosage of Amarillo, Idaho 7 and Citra hops to give it not just the fruity face smash, but a nice piney bite as well. Think of tropical fruit in the middle of a pine forest, with a really nice full, but soft mouthfeel.
The beer is dead on for what you want out of a NE IPA, except for one little thing – they used the “wrong” packaging. Hang in there with me for a second:
The Great Packaging Debate
I can’t really explain this fully. I don’t really know why NE IPAs are almost always packaged in 16oz pint cans, other than it’s just how it’s been done. It started when Heady Topper first set the trend, before NE IPAs were even a thing – and was solidified when Trillium moved all their packaging into 16oz cans too. Now, you’ll catch some crap if you do anything besides a 16oz can or draft only. I don’t know why.
We saw it with Rhinegeist, though. Their first few forays into the world of NE IPAs were packaged in 12oz cans or in the case of ‘Feeling Good’ a 22oz bomber. Both of these make perfect sense for Rhinegeist… most of their core or seasonal beers get 12oz cans, and their rarity series usually gets the 22oz treatment. It wasn’t like the artwork on the bomber didn’t fit the beer – it was beautiful, summery, fresh, tropical… but I still heard the grumbles.
Grumble no more, grumps… it looks like they’re changing things up for you.
This New Approval
The label approval that I’m looking at is a new one for this Castle Island Collaboration, Feeling Good – but it’s most definitely for a 16oz can, and not a new bomber. The label takes the topical feeling of the first release, and turns it into a blue wave abstract design. The bottom features just the Rhinegeist “ghost head logo” and the name and style of the beer. The only other text you’ll find is the size of the package, the abv and the hops used. It’s bold, bright and fits the personality of what 16oz cans of NE IPAs typically are.
I’m digging this.
Surprisingly, one thing that I’m not seeing on this packaging at all is the collaborating brewery – Castle Island. I’m not sure if that means that the recipe was changed up enough that Rhinegeist feels it’s a new beer, or if it is just an agreement between the breweries – but I wish it was still on there.
As for when you might see these hit the streets, as they like to say – You know the label approval drill by now… there’s not only no guarantee that we’ll see it, but there is no indication of when that will be if we do. Keep your eyes peeled to social media (and right here) for more information as it becomes available!