Although contrary to the name, The Backyard Brewing Society actually started in a garage at Drew's house. Drew and I had a mutual love of drinking and making beer. So, we got together to brew beer. Period. Sometime there after, like rabbits in a high school science class, our group started to multiply. We moved to my backyard, Drew's backyard, Dave's front yard, our local's bier garden and once, a church's parking lot. We added in more brewers and tackled the art of home brewing in every season and under every condition. Things grew.
When Drew and I first got together to brew I think we may have had one beer...that we shared. Well that changed too and so has the food. We quickly realized our brewing sessions with "periodic" beer "tastings" on empty stomachs was a bad thing, so we added a BBQ feast to the end of the day. After someone lost an iPhone in a toilet and we about burned my garage down, we added food to the start of the day, too.
These beer making food adventures also earned a name: Brew Day. They were more than marks on a calendar, they were social events. As the frequency of our events started to increase and our numbers grew, we also added a name. In fact, it wasn't just a name, it was a society, The Backyard Brewing Society. We had full members, those who brew, and associate members, those who helped brew. In full disclosure, when we talked about having a group name, Eric joked about calling us "The Butterflies". He wasn't serious…well, let me rephrase that. He was serious, but just thought it was extremely funny to call a group of guys who get together to brew beer, grill meat and socialize, butterflies. It's been a running joke ever since…and an uphill battle to keep him from introducing butterflies into everything we do.
For the last few years we've had the name, we have talked about getting an emblem, crest or logo. It just seemed the proper thing to do. We are a society after all. Last year, my friend Simon gave me a shout out through a post at Spoke Magazine. Simon is a Christchurch, New Zealand based bicycle builder, mountain biker, Weber griller, designer and 1/4 of the homebrew collective known as Crafternoon. He's basically my kiwi counterpart, but with loads more talent. Simon's full-time job is with the advertising and design firm Deflux.
If Simon's interests don't spell out the kind of amazing work he is capable of producing, check out the Deflux website. It's phenomenal. For an understanding of why I can't wait to share a beer with Simon and the rest of his Deflux/Crafternoon crew, check out their Careers page. I believe our humor is in the same orbit, or toilet bowl, as the case may be.
Without turning this into War & Peace, I sent Simon an email asking about putting together an idea for a Backyard Brewing Society Logo. He immediately took me up on the idea and created this, the official logo of The Backyard Brewing Society:
Words cannot begin to describe how amazed/excited/stoked we are about Simon's work. It's stellar. I think we all had ideas on what it would be, but needless to say Simon torched them all in a charcoal chimney. The emblem is all there: the backyard, the fermenters, the grill…even the motto, which is really what we are: Beer, BBQ & Brothers. It's a special group and a special society and thankfully, not a butterfly is to be seen. I think. I need to zoom in a little. In this regard, Eric and Simon could have hatched a plan...
Yes, I know this post is a lot of sentimental dribble, but there are several things to understand. First, I have an amazing group of talented friends who enjoy getting together to do something…to learn something. None of us, well none except maybe Drew, are "great" brewers. We continually improve, we learn from our mistakes and more importantly, we brew beer we enjoy. We also grill food we enjoy, too. Remember, we have to eat. Second, the Internet makes a lot of cool shit happen. I know my "Internet Friends" is a running joke, but in reality, it's no joke. Thanks to this blog, I have had the amazing fortune of making and meeting new friends I would have never met before I decided taking pictures of food was cool. In reality, Simon and his New Zealand crew are really a spitting image of ourselves. Just watching their Instagram photos makes me long for when I can actually raise a glass with them, instead of a virtual glass thousands of miles away. The killer logo Simon designed for a bunch of guys he has never met, but completely understands, is a testimony to what this Society is, and more.
So, if you have any design work that needs carried out, please seek out Deflux. Yes, they are half way around the world, but Simons' work is second to none. Unless of course he has included a hidden butterfly I've yet to discover.
Coming soon, t-shirts, stickers…and maybe, lab coats. The Backyard Brewing Society is now even more official. After all, we have a logo.