It’s always tough to come up with unique gift ideas, whether you’re looking to provide a keepsake for a wedding party, a gift for clients, or surprise a friend with something that’s totally their own – made just for them. Sigil & Growler is a local company in Vancouver that creates custom, laser engraved growlers for exactly those occasions, and more.
I’ve seen the Miss604 logo in many places over the years, but etched on the bottom of a custom growler was a new and exciting sight to behold. The good folks at Sigil & Growler invited me to browse their pre-made designs, then they added my logo to the creation:
When I picked up my growler from the studio on Industrial Ave I also got to meet passionate co-founders Tarlan & Addel, and browse some beautiful original designs from their artist Tom van der Lee.
They offer 64oz growlers, 32oz mini growlers, or 32oz Boston rounds. They’re the perfect vessel for your favourite craft beer, or your custom home brew, and even if you don’t drink alcohol I would think they make pretty slick water bottles too.
Get to Know Growlers
So what’s the deal with growlers? The short answer is that they are glass bottles that you can fill up at a brewery. For a better answer, with some clout and expertise backing it up, I asked Chris Bjerrisgaard for some tips. He’s the Co-Founder of Vancouver Craft Beer Week and Marketing Director for Vancouver Island Brewery.
“There are a number of benefits,” Chris told me when I asked about the advantages of bringing your own growler to a brewery.
“I would say the thing that attracts most people is the environmental aspect. Both in the fact that they are going to the brewery environment to get the growler filled, so there’s that experience, and that they are lowering the environmental impact their beer consumption has by bringing their own reusable vessel for filling.”
If you’re not sure if a craft brewery does growler fills, just give them a shout before you arrive. If you’ve been to their tap room before, and seen growlers on display, that’s always a good sign too. When you’re ready to fill up, there are a few key growler etiquette points to remember. Chris says the number one thing is to give your growler a hot water rinse after you’ve used it.
“If you do not do this it’s going to get stinky. Once it’s stinky you’re going to need to not only hit it with super hot water, but also some bleach or PBW from a home-brew shop to kill the bacteria / mould that will have started to grow by leaving beer residue in the growler. If you don’t do this some breweries will refuse to fill your growler because it could easily make the beer they put in the growler taste bad, or even worse, make you sick if you have a weaker stomach. Both of those things they clearly wouldn’t want you blaming on them.”
To get the very best tasting, fresh from the brewery beer out of your nice, clean, custom growler, the key is also to consume it ASAP.
“It will depend on the technology the brewery uses to fill a growler. For those using a c02 purging system like Parallel 49, Brassneck, they can last two weeks in the fridge as long as they have not been opened.” Chris advises that for those filling off the taps with no c02 purge, the oxygen pickup will mean the beer will only be good for a few days unopened. “In either case you’ve only got a day, maybe two from when you crack it as the c02 will then start to leech out of the beer, similar to opening a 2L pop bottle. Expect it to last about as long as that.”
Start Shopping for Custom Growlers
If you would like to try out Sigil & Growler, use promo code MISS604 when you check out to receive a discount. Follow them on Instagram for all of their posts and start feeling that #GrowlerEnvy until you get your hands on your own.