Boulevard Retires Twist-Off Caps

A local tradition is ending.  Over ten years ago, I twisted the cap off a bottle of Boulevard Unfiltered Wheat and tasted my first craft beer.  Many things have changed since then, but the ritual of opening a bottle of Boulevard Wheat or Pale Ale has remained the same.  Until now.  Boulevard has switched from twist-off to pry-off caps and while it may take some time for this change to work its way through Boulevard's distribution system, some day soon all Boulevard beer will require a bottle opener.

In addition to the bottle cap design change, consumers will initially see stickers on six, twelve and twenty-pack cartons of all Boulevard heritage brands, informing them to use a bottle opener. Prior to this change, only Boulevard Pilsner and the brewery’s Smokestack Series 12-ounce beers were sealed with a pry-off crown. Now, the only bottles not capped with this type of top are the 750mL bottles in the Smokestack Series, which continue to be corked and caged.

Why pry-off caps?  Here's what Boulevard Founder John McDonald has to say:

"We’re constantly evaluating ways to ensure the quality of our beers. Pry-off caps are more effective at keeping out oxygen, one of the main enemies of maintaining excellent beer flavor. They also assist with maintaining correct carbonation levels throughout the recommended beer shelf life.”

I know that pry-off caps are a superior way to seal beer bottles and this change is probably long overdue.  But I can't say a part of me won't miss the twist-offs.  Maybe I'm just being nostalgic, but twisting off the cap of a Boulevard beer is something ingrained in my soul.  Despite the stickers telling me to use an opener, I know I'm going to look right past them and muscle memory is going to take over.  Something tells me I won't be the only one tearing up my fingers as I twist in vain.

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