In the fall of 2002, the five-year-old Oskar Blues Brewery out of tiny Lyons, Colo., decided to can rather than bottle its beers for retail sale. It became, then, America’s first independently owned, smaller-scale brewery to can its beers in-house. (Others had done it under contract at other breweries, starting as far back as the early 1990s.)
Shortly before Christmas that same year, Denver-based Frontier Airlines, itself dating from the mid-1990s (1994, to be exact), announced that it would be selling Oskar Blues on its flights, particularly the brewery’s beloved Dale’s Pale Ale, which founder Dale Katechis had devised in part through homebrewed batches in his bathtub.
This partnership opened up an ongoing trend of choice for consumers, something to be grateful for this vacation season.