AMAZING TAP HANDLES!!!

About This Site

Welcome to Amazing Tap Handles - The Tap Handle Museum. Here you will find photos of the Museum's collection of beer taps, along with brewery info. Have a look around the Museum, and use the contact form in sidebar to leave me feedback about the site, talk about taps, or if you have a rare tap handle you'd like to sell to the Museum. I'd love to hear from you! Please, no inquires about buying taps - they're not for sale.

Copyright Legalities

Photos or tap descriptions used in this blog may not be misrepresented as your own. Photos may not be used for financial gain whatsoever, as the uniqueness of the photo would unfairly associate a seller's product and reputation with this site. Tap descriptions may be used word for word as long as this blog is cited as the source, and a link is provided to this site.

Brewery history may not be used for any reason without citing the blog post or original source from which it was taken, and providing a link to such.

Failure to follow the guidelines above is a violation of Copyright Law, which protects original works of ownership.

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Monday, December 2, 2019

Tap Giveaway #15 - Results

This contest closed without any entries. I will have another contest sometime next year. For now, it's back to more tap profiles...

Thursday, November 28, 2019

Tap Giveaway #15 Announcement

It's time for another tap giveaway! This will be the 15th contest that the Museum has sponsored. Previous tap contest entries and winners were:

#1 - East Coast Taps nautical theme - won by Denis G. (out of 3 entries received for trivia contest)
#2 - Florida Keys mermaid - won by Sean W. (out of 6 entries received)
#3 - Big Dawg - won by Charlie W. (out of 4 entries received)
#4 - Beer Army - won by Ariel N. (out of 15 entries received)
#5 - Beer Army #2 - won by Larry C. (out of 14 entries received)
#6 - Red Hook Seedy Blonde - won by Bill S. (out of 13 entries received)
#7 - Leinenkugal IPL - won by John P. (out of 12 entries received)
#8 - Shiner Smokehaus - won by Graham B. (out of 12 entries received)
#9 - Haacht Rince Cochon - won by Blair B. (out of 15 entries received)
#10 - Hobgoblin (new style) x 2 - won by Patrick M. and Doug K. (out of 22 entries received)
#11 - Celt Thirsty Warrior - won by Jeff H. (out of 16 entries)
#12 - Leinenkugal IPL - won by Ken M. (out of 5 entries received)
#13 - Small Town Brewery Not Your Father's Root Beer - won by Al L. (out of 13 entries)
#14 - Small Town Brewery Not Your Father's Root Beer - won by Martin A. (out of 13 entries)

Market value of taps given away to date: approximately $770

I'm giving the winner their choice of one of the following three taps:


Tap #1: Leinenkugal IPL - The tap is new and unused in its original box. This is the same tap given away in contests #7 and #12. It is made to look like a wooden post with signs nailed to it.












Tap #2: Rivertown Pumpkin - The tap is new and unused in its original box. This is the same tap you'll find in profile# 586.













Tap #3: Pabst Old Tankard Ale - The tap is new and unused in its original box.












To enter the contest, you need only submit your name through the "Contact Me" feature in the sidebar, or email me if we've been in contact previously. In a bit of a change from previous contests (since I'm on a time constraint) I will choose one winner at random on Monday, December 2nd, so you have until Sunday, December 1st, 11:59 pm PST to enter. Once I announce the winner they will have 48 hours to respond to my email or I will choose a new winner. The two taps which are not chosen will be used for future giveaways. Good luck!

Friday, November 22, 2019

The Museum Turns 8 Years Old, Part 4: Upcoming Tap Profiles

A couple of years ago I added a new feature that was essentially a sneak peak of upcoming profiles. Although some of those profiles still haven't made an appearance due to various reasons, I felt that the topic was worth revisiting. Last year I was only able to profile 5 of the 10 taps I had chosen. Click through to find out which additional 5 taps I hope to profile over the next year...

Saturday, November 16, 2019

The Museum Turns 8 Years Old, Part 3: Top 10 Taps Acquired This Year

"Top 10 Taps Acquired This Year" is a feature I debuted last year, and it turned out to be one of my most popular posts, so I thought I'd bring it back again this year. It's an opportunity to share some of my favorite acquisitions with my readers when you wouldn't see them otherwise for years. I've already profiled many great new acquisitions from partnerships with breweries this past year, such as Mission Springs, Labyrinth, Freigeist Bierkultur, Lake Monster, True Vine, Departed Souls, Karbach, Ghostface, South Beach, and Moon Under Water. Since those taps have already appeared on the site, in this post I'm going to focus on other taps I acquired that have not been profiled yet. Click through to see the taps, which have been presented in no particular order...

Tuesday, November 12, 2019

The Museum Turns 8 Years Old, Part 2: Individual Tap Statistics



In Part 2 of my series of anniversary posts, it's time to take a look at individual tap statistics. To revisit the concept, I'm listing which taps generate the most page views on the site. I've divided the rankings based on the year that I profiled the tap, so I've listed the 20 taps with the most views for Year 1, Year 2, Year 3, Year 4, Year 5, and Year 7. Since fewer taps were profiled in Year 6 and Year 8, only the top 10 will be ranked for those years. The number in parenthesis is the previous year's ranking if different than the current year; "NR" means the tap was not on the list last year. The first tap on the list has the most views, and the other taps follow in descending order.

There was a bit of movement for each year, although only a little at the top spots. Year 5 had a new #1, while Year 6 was unchanged. As expected, Year 7 saw a lot of movement, with 4 new taps on the list, and an octopus and kraken in the top 2 spots.

Click through to see the lists..

Monday, November 11, 2019

The Museum Turns 8 Years Old, Part 1: Summary and Statistics

Another year, another set of anniversary posts to celebrate the founding of the Museum and this blog. This first post takes a brief look at the past year and what I hope to accomplish over the next year, plus site statistics.

Click through to read more...

Thursday, November 7, 2019

Tap Handle #734: Wildrose

Tap size:  11.25"
Rarity:  less than 10 seen
Mounting:  internal 3/8" nut

I purchased this tap from a friend and fellow club member who gave me a great deal on it, and I wanted it badly. The detail on this tap is incredible...it is basically a three sided tap, with a skull on each side. Underneath each skull is a pink colored rose. A sign on the front top has the name of the brewery, while another sign under the rose says "Brewing". The skulls, roses and signs are attached to a rust-colored, leather-clad post in the center that has barb wire wrapped around it. The tap has so much character, and the skulls definitely lend a morbid, creepy factor - but in a cool way, of course - this is a highly desirable collectible! No beer variety is found on the tap; instead it is used for all of the brewery's varieties (I'll be profiling their Mad Cow Milk Stout). This was one of the ten taps I was looking forward to profiling in my anniversary post from last year, so I'm happy to finally get it done. This tap has certainly been pretty scarce, with only perhaps a half dozen appearing on the secondary market at premium prices.

Note: Wildrose Brewing is not to be confused with Wild Rose Brewery, which was a Canadian brewer that was eventually consumed by Sleeman.

Click through to read more about Wildrose Brewing, their Mad Cow Milk Stout, and to see more photos of this incredible tap...

Monday, November 4, 2019

Tap Handle #733: Snowshoe - Weizen (Snoweizen)

Tap size:  10"
Rarity:  none
Mounting:  3/8" ferrule on 5/16" anchor bolt

I'm taking a brief respite from recent brewery acquisitions to return to posting a couple of older taps. This tap is a classic from Snowshoe Brewing. To my knowledge it first appeared around 2007 or 2008, and their are several variations depending on variety. Featuring a snowshoe, appropriately enough, what differentiates the tap varieties are the names of the individual beers in raised, sculpted letters on banner that appears in a few different colors such as red, blue and green. There is also a variety that simply says "Snowshoe" with no beer name. Weizen is an older beer name that is now referred to as Snoweizen. Since the front and back are nearly identical (there are very minor differences), I've reduced the number of photos taken. It's a great tap to display next to Snowshoe's Grizzly tap, which I posted about in profile #511. They do pop up on the secondary market from time to time but the price has been wildly unpredictable.

For more about Snowshoe Brewing, see this post.

Click through to read more about Snowshoe Brewing's Snoweizen and to see more photos of this chill tap...

Friday, November 1, 2019

Tap Handle #732: Moon Under Water - Tranquility IPA

Tap size:  10.25"
Rarity:  less than 10 seen
Mounting:  3/8" ferrule on 5/16" anchor bolt

I was able to acquire this tap thanks to one of my club members and Anne Farmer, one of the owners of Moon Under Water Pub and Brewery. Produced to commemorate the 50th anniversary (July 2019) of NASA's Apollo 11 mission which resulted in Neil Armstrong and Buzz Aldrin walking on the moon, it's very impressive, not only in design but also in stability...this tap has some serious weight to it. An astronaut holds a large sign where a label can be placed (I have taken a photo of the 2 labels I received, to the right). This feature allows the tap to be used for all their beer varieties. The name of the brewery appears as a decal on a raised section on the base of the tap. On the astronaut's backpack are the words: "One small step for man One great beer for mankind". Below the backpack are some moon rocks that add a nice finishing touch. The bluish color scheme is pretty striking and I had to use a special filter on my camera to capture it properly. I've only seen a few of these hit the secondary market.

On July 16, 1969, astronauts Neil Armstrong, Buzz Aldrin and Michael Collins lifted off from Launch Pad 39A at NASA’s Kennedy Space Center in Florida on a journey to the Moon and into history. Four days later, while Collins orbited the Moon in the command module, Armstrong and Aldrin landed Apollo 11’s lunar module, Eagle, on the Moon’s Sea of Tranquility, becoming the first humans to set foot on the lunar surface. In July 2019, NASA commemorated the 50th anniversary of the Apollo 11 mission with a series of activities that included interviews with Buzz Aldrin and Michael Collins; hosting the Apollo 50 Festival, a free three-day event on the National Mall in Washington; dedication of Postal Service commemorative stamps; TV broadcasts; ringing the closing bell on Wall Street; a concert at the Kennedy Center for the Performing Arts in Washington; and several other events.

Click through to read more about Moon Under Water Pub and Brewery, their Tranquility IPA, and to see more photos of this out-of-this-world tap...

Saturday, October 19, 2019

Tap Handle #731: South Beach - Sail Ale

Tap size:  13.25"
Rarity:  less than 10 seen, nanobrewery
Mounting:  internal 3/8" nut

This is the fourth and final tap from South Beach Brewing that I will be profiling. I can't really tell you much about about it, because I can't find a reference to it or a corresponding beer on South Beach's website...the box that it came in calls it "Sail Ale" but that name isn't found on the tap anywhere. I suspect that it might be used for the brewery's experimental beers brewed in-house at the nanobrewery, as opposed to their core beers which are brewed by a contract brewer. I wanted it because it's nautical and completes the set of South Beach taps. It features a wooden sailboat with what I assume is an artistic rendering of the sun near the top of the sails. The boat sits on waves, which in turn are on top of the brewery logo (Frank Sunatra). The word "ALE" appears as raised letters on both the front and back of the sails, as well as on a banner that appears at the top of the sail on the back side. The boat has port holes that only appear on the front side. It's a great nautical themed tap, and if I learn more about it in the future I will provide an update. As of the time of this post, I have not seen this tap on the secondary market.

Click through to see more photos of this intrepid tap...

Wednesday, October 16, 2019

Tap Handle #730: South Beach - Sunset Blood Orange IPA

Tap size:  13.25"
Rarity:  less than 10 seen, nanobrewery, contract brewed
Mounting:  internal 3/8" nut

Sunset Blood Orange IPA is the third tap from South Beach Brewing that I'm profiling, and it's a great one! Just like the other South Beach taps, it is very colorful and features a unique character that South Beach refers to as Conchy Astaire, The Flamingo. Per the brewery's website:

"Conchy is our Blood Orange IPA Mascot. Created with brilliant bright feathers and a dapper feathered hat, Conchy is always the talk of South Beach. He loves sipping fresh Florida OJ during brunch and eating local Florida shrimp. Although he’s an enormous celebrity in South Beach, you hardly see him out in public anymore. Nobody knows why."

Conchy, like Fred Pestaire in the previous post, is pretty chill with a stylish hat that has a feather stuck in it. Also like Fred, the name of the beer appears as raised letters, but on Conchy it is on his neck and wing. The stylish flamongo stands on top of the brewery logo (Frank Sunatra), in front of a piece of a blood orange. Unlike Fred, a Conchy sold on the secondary market for well over $100.

For more about South Beach Brewing, see this post.

Click through to read more about South Beach Brewing's Sunset Blood Orange IPA and to see more photos of this brilliant tap...

Saturday, October 12, 2019

Tap Handle #729: South Beach - Strawberry Orange Mimosa

Tap size:  12.5" tall by 4" wide
Rarity:  less than 10 seen, nanobrewery, contract brewed
Mounting:  internal 3/8" nut

This next tap from South Beach is probably my favorite of the 4. The character's name is Fred Pestaire, The Pelican, South Beach's Strawberry Orange Mimosa Mascot. Per the brewery's website:

"He’s a true gentleman always dressed in a tuxedo with a top hat and a cigar. He loves his fans and thanks God each day for his wings and blue feet. Although he’s extremely friendly, if he were to wink at you it’s a secret sign that you’re part of his secret circle. Consider yourself very lucky."

Fred Pestaire is quite a dapper fellow in his top hat, bow tie and tuxedo. He is perched on an orange and a strawberry, which in turn is sitting on top of the brewery logo (Frank Sunatra). The cigar in his mouth is visible from either side. The name of the beer appears as raised letters on both sides of the beak. This is just an amazing tap and you have to see it in person to appreciate it. I listed the 4" depth from the back of the pelican's head to the tip of the beak, as it is wider than a normal tap, although if the tap is oriented correctly the wider depth won't be an issue. A couple of these have appeared on the secondary market, but to my knowledge have not sold.

For more information about South Beach Brewing, see this post.

Click through to read more about South Beach's Strawberry Orange Mimosa and to see more photos of this stylish hat...

Thursday, October 10, 2019

Tap Handle #728: South Beach - South Peach Shandy (Venus)

Tap size:  13"
Rarity:  less than 10 seen, fragile, nanobrewery, contract brewed
Mounting:  internal 3/8" nut

Many thanks to one of my club members and Devon of South Beach Brewing Company for their assistance in obtaining not just one South Beach tap, but 4! This tap, referred to as "Venus" by the brewery, is their standard tap that is used for most beers, as it has a sign in the center in which a magnetic label can be placed. The overall design involves an abstract woman made out of pieces of fruit, ocean waves, normal body parts, and a strategically placed palm tree; although I don't know the origin of the character, the fruit is obviously a reference to the various Florida fruits used in South Beach beers. What I do know is that the character that appears in their logo (and which you will see on all the taps) is "Frank Sunatra", their mascot and the face of the brewery. In the brewery's words:

"Always smiling, you can find him sunning on the beach surrounded by coconut palm trees, blue skies and the beautiful blue colored ocean water. In case you need to find him, his GPS coordinates are always with him and if those don’t work, just follow his compass. When you greet him just remember to smile and buy him a beer."

Here, Frank Sunatra appears in the brewery logo at the top of the tap. At the bottom of the tap is a small sign that I believe reads "S 28.1 W 80.7". It's a little tough to be sure that what I've written is correct due to the artistic styling of the numbers. I also can't make any sense out of what the numbers mean; I originally thought it might be latitude and longitude values, but that would be located off the west coast of South America and is far from the brewery. For now it's a mystery, and if I find out more I will update this post. In summary, the tap is fantastic, truly a work of art based on the color and composition. A few have hit the secondary market but the price has been all over the place. The tap is a bit fragile, as all the exposed edges are prone to chipping.

Click through to read more about South Beach Brewing Company, their South Peach Shandy, and to see more photos of this fruitful tap...

Friday, September 13, 2019

Tap Handle #727: Ghostface

Tap size:  11"
Rarity:  less than 10 seen
Mounting:  internal 3/8" nut

This tap is so cool! A big thanks to one of my club members and Mike Cuddy of Ghostface Brewing for hooking me up with this tap and adding it to the Museum. It features a skeletal arm that holds a round disc (which resembles a hockey puck a bit), which in turn bears the name and logo of the brewery (and the words "spooky good"). The tap is not variety specific and is used for all of the brewery's beers (I have chosen to profile their Tempted Angel Belgian Dubbel). The spotty bronze/metallic coloration of the bones are a really unique touch and enhances the cool factor. I have not seen these on the secondary market.

Click through to read more about Ghostface Brewing, their Tempted Angel Belgian Dubbel, and to see more photos of this scary good tap...

Tuesday, August 20, 2019

Tap Handle #726: Karbach - Hopadillo IPA

Tap size:  11"
Rarity:  less than 10 seen
Mounting:  3/8" ferrule on 5/16" anchor bolt

This is the second Karbach tap that I obtained from the brewery, and I really like the character who sits at the top of the tap: the Hopadillo. It's a fierce-looking armadillo made of hops. According to the brewery, he lurks in the shadows, waiting in bold anticipation. He's surprisingly bitter. Bitter about something. Legend has it that he feasts on those with fresh hops coursing through their veins. About a half dozen of these taps have appeared on the secondary market at very reasonable prices, although it's been a few months since one appeared.

For more about Karbach Brewing, see this post.

Click through to read more about Karbach Brewing's Hopadillo IPA and to see more photos of this monstrous tap...

Tuesday, August 13, 2019

Update 8-13-19

I have a few more breweries for whom I promised an immediate profile about them and their tap handles. As a result, next up will be another tap from Karbach, followed by one from Ghostface Brewing, 4 taps from South Beach Brewing, and one from Moon Under Water Brewing.

Once those are complete, I'll resume creating profiles for older pieces in the collection...

Monday, August 12, 2019

Tap Handle #725: Karbach (Anheuser-Busch) - Yule Shoot Your Eye Out Red Ale

Tap size:  11"
Rarity:  less than 10 seen
Mounting:  3/8" ferrule on 5/16" anchor bolt

Many thanks to Rachel of Karbach Brewing for helping me to add this tap to the Museum! I'll be the first to admit that while I do enjoy the movie "A Christmas Story", after repeated viewings some of the humor has worn thin. I will also admit that some of it never gets old, no matter how many times it's watched, and some of its catch phrases and imagery are deeply ingrained in pop culture. The hideous yet hilarious "leg lamp" is certainly one of those pop culture icons that is instantly recognizable as having come from the movie. That lamp appears here, with both leg base and lampshade included. It stands on a crate adorned in red and green holiday colors, with the name of the brewery on two faces of the crate and the name of the beer on the other two faces. The name of the beer evokes a sequence in the movie where young Ralphie is not allowed to own a BB gun, as his mother tells him it's because, "you'll shoot your eye out." In a clever play on words, the brewery has tied this phrase even more strongly to the Christmas holiday through the beer's name. While a half dozen or so of these taps have appeared on the secondary market, they have commanded a price around $100 apiece or more.

Click through to read more about Karbach Brewing, their Yule Shoot Your Eye Out Red Ale, and to see more photos of this iconic tap...

Saturday, July 27, 2019

Tap Handle #724: Departed Soles

Tap size:  11.5"
Rarity:  less than 10 seen
Mounting:  3/8" ferrule on 5/16" anchor bolt

I received this tap back in March from Brian Kulbacki, the owner of Departed Soles Brewing. I wish I could have finished this post sooner, as I really wanted to get Brian's story out there, but better late than never I guess! At the top of the tap is a sign bearing the brewery's name, and a pedestal at the base of the tap allows a place to put a label for the beer variety (I'm going to profile A Dark Night Black IPA). The main feature of the tap is the Statue of Liberty holding a mug of beer and wearing sneakers. The iconic statue is resting against a brick wall that has "graffiti" written on it, including the words "New Jersey". The statue and the graffiti reflect the fact that the brewery is located in Jersey City, and the sneakers are a passion of Brian's. In small letters above the graffiti art you will see "RIP CW".  This refers to Brian's friend Chris Ward, and when you read the rest of the post, the meaning of this will become very clear. I've seen maybe a half dozen hit the secondary market at prices over $100. The brewery shows some different, plainer taps on their social media accounts, so I'm not sure if the tap is still being produced.

Click through to read more about Departed Soles Brewing and to see more photos of this symbolic tap...

Friday, July 5, 2019

Tap Handle #723: Moddy Brew - Deep Troubles Blonde Ale

Tap size:  12"
Rarity:  limited to 100 made
Mounting:  3/8" ferrule on 5/16" anchor bolt

It is extremely rare for me to acquire a tap that is not associated with an actual brewery (or cidery or meadery). I had decided early on in my collecting to focus on brewery taps because there was a story to tell, either about the brewery, the tap, or both. For most generic, homemade, or artistic taps (like those belonging to Ron Lee) that are not associated with a brewery, there isn't a story to tell.

This one, however, is a bit different.

After I was first contacted by Moddy Brewing (they wanted to know how to get their tap in the Museum) and I learned about the story behind the tap, I decided to acquire one when they became available. When I saw the photos they sent me of the design, the first thing that struck me was not the monstrous tentacles, which are pretty cool, or the girl, who is finely sculpted - it is instead the fact that you cannot see the girl's face. Since I thought this feature (or should I say lack of one) was probably significant, I reached out to Moddy Brew and asked them about it, and you can find out what I learned as you read more of the write up. The tap is very impressive in person, and the labels (pictured, right) match the tap perfectly (they are meant to be applied over the oval "M B" section of the tap). "Moddy Brew" appears at the very base of the tap, just above the ferrule, in gold lettering. Only 100 of these taps have been made, and each comes with a certificate of authenticity. To date, more than half of the Deep Troubles taps produced have been sold, so at some point they will no longer be available and could become hard to find. You can order this tap through Moddy Brew's Facebook page (link provided at the end of the post), and it can also be found on eBay, while supplies last. This is a great conversation piece and an excellent addition to the collection.

Click through to read about Moddy Brew and to see more photos of this symbolic tap...

Wednesday, June 12, 2019

Tap Handle #722: True Vine - Mermaids and Unicorns

Tap size:  11"
Rarity:  less than 10 seen
Mounting: large 3/8" ferrule on 5/16" anchor bolt

A big thank you to the wonderful people at True Vine Brewing who helped me obtain this beautiful tap! It features, appropriately enough, a stylistic mermaid and a unicorn (they remind me of Maurice Sendak's "Where The Wild Things Are" artistic style) on top of foamy bubbles, with the name of the beer appearing on a ribbon just below them. Under that is a shield-like sign that bears the logo of the brewery. The shaft of the tap has the appearance of a purple-colored treasure map that shows the outline of the state of Texas. At the bottom are some sculpted waves and a large ferrule. The beer and the tap were inspired by all the fairytale worlds that the brewery owners and employees experience as daddies of daughters within the True Vine Brewing Company family. The tap is scarce on the secondary market, with only a half dozen available since they first appeared earlier this year.

Click through to read more about True Vine Brewing, their Mermaids and Unicorns Blonde Ale, and to see more photos of this whimsical tap...

Friday, May 17, 2019

Tap Handle #721: Crying Eagle - Louisiana Lager

Tap size:  11.75"
Rarity:  less than 10 seen
Mounting:  internal 3/8" nut

This is the third and final Crying Eagle entry, and once again it is a tap supplied by friend of the museum Morgan C. It features an image of the state of Louisiana at the top, with a water scene - complete with cattails and a dock - on the base of the tap, sculpted in bas relief. The purple, blue, and pastel color scheme is gorgeous and vivid. Unlike the previous two taps from Crying Eagle that I have profiled, I have actually seen one of these appear on the secondary market for a very reasonable price.

For more about Crying Eagle, see this post.

Click through to read more about Crying Eagle's Louisiana Lager and to see more photos of this beautiful tap...

Sunday, May 12, 2019

Tap Handle #720: Crying Eagle - Hop Blooded IPA

Size:  12"
Rarity:  less than 10 seen
Mounting:  internal 3/8" nut

Here comes another tap from friend of the Museum Morgan C. and Crying Eagle. This one represents a collaboration between the brewery and the legendary rock band Foreigner, with the name being a play on the title of one of the bands songs, "Hot Blooded". It features a large hop at the top of the tap, with blood vessels sticking out of it as if the hop were a heart. Those blood vessels extend into the lower part of the tap, where hops and hop leaves are sculpted in bas relief. A sign in the middle of the tap bears the name of the brewery and the beer variety. Like the previous Crying Eagle tap I profiled, Pistol Bridge, this tap is also fairly new and I haven't seen another.

Foreigner is an English-American rock band, originally formed in New York City in 1976 by veteran English musician and ex-Spooky Tooth member Mick Jones, and fellow Briton and ex-King Crimson member Ian McDonald along with American vocalist Lou Gramm. Jones came up with the band's name as he, McDonald and Dennis Elliott were British, while Gramm, Al Greenwood and Ed Gagliardi were American. They are one of the world's best-selling bands of all time with worldwide sales of more than 80 million records, including 37.5 million records in the US. The band's debut, Foreigner, was released in February 1977 and sold more than four million copies in the United States, staying in the Top 20 for a year with such hits as "Feels Like the First Time", "Cold as Ice" and "Long, Long Way from Home". Their second album, Double Vision (released in June 1978), co-produced by Keith Olsen, topped their previous, selling five million records and spawned hits in "Hot Blooded", the title track "Double Vision" and "Blue Morning, Blue Day". Album number three, Head Games (September 1979), co-produced by Roy Thomas Baker, which was referred to by Gramm as their "grainiest" album, was also successful because of the thunderous "Dirty White Boy" and another title track hit "Head Games". The next album was recorded at Electric Lady Studios in New York City with producer Robert John "Mutt" Lange, engineered by Dave Wittman (currently with Trans-Siberian Orchestra). 4 (released in July 1981) contained the hits "Urgent" (which includes the famous Junior Walker sax solo), "Waiting for a Girl Like You", "Juke Box Hero" and "Break it Up". Before releasing albums of his own, Thomas Dolby played synthesizers on 4 (he contributed the signature synth sound on "Urgent" and played the intro to "Waiting for a Girl Like You"). Their next album, Agent Provocateur, co-produced by Alex Sadkin, was released successfully in December 1984 and gave them their first and only No. 1 hit in 1985 (in the US, UK, Australia, Norway, Sweden, etc.), "I Want to Know What Love Is", a ballad backed by Jennifer Holliday and the New Jersey Mass Choir. The song was their biggest U.S. hit.

Foreigner information courtesy of Wikipedia.

For more about Crying Eagle Brewing, see this post.

Click through to read more about Crying Eagle's Hop Blooded IPA and to see more photos of this hot blooded tap...

Saturday, May 4, 2019

Tap Handle #719: Crying Eagle - Pistol Bridge Porter

Tap size:  12"
Rarity:  less than 10 seen
Mounting:  internal 3/8" nut

This is the second tap that was supplied by friend of the Museum Morgan C., and features another Louisiana brewery, Crying Eagle. I will be featuring 3 Crying Eagle taps, and this is probably my favorite of the 3 due to the theme and colors. The tap is done in bas relief, with pistols at the top, the Calcasieu River Bridge below that, a sign featuring the brewery's name and the beer variety, and a sunset scene at the bottom with reeds and metal girders. The front and back of the tap are identical to each other, so I have reduced the number of photos taken. This tap represents one of the new core brews that the company rolled out during their rebranding in 2018, so it is very recent and I have not yet seen another.

The Calcasieu River Bridge was built between 1948 and 1952 in Lake Charles, Lousiana. Officials had planned to call it the Lafitte Bridge, after the infamous pirate Jean Lafitte, who was rumored to have buried some of his treasure in the area. About 10,572 decorative crossed pistols were originally placed as part of the bridge rail as a symbol of Southwest Louisiana's pirate history. It brings I-10/US 90 west from Lake Charles into Westlake. In the 50s, it was US 90, and was later grandfathered into an I-10 bridge. When that process took place, the federal government promised to replace the bridge, since it was not designed originally to be an interstate bridge, but that never happened. Decades later, the bridge has been rated structurally deficient by the DOT; in 2016, Travel and Leisure magazine put the bridge on the list of “America’s Most Dangerous Bridges”, coming in at number 7.


Bridge photos courtesy of SnarkyBytes.

Click through to read more about Crying Eagle Brewing, their Pistol Bridge Porter, and to see more photos of this iconic tap...

Sunday, April 21, 2019

Tap Handle #718 - Flying Tiger

Tap size:  12.25"
Rarity:  less than 10 seen
Mounting:  3/8" ferrule on 5/16" anchor bolt

This incredible tap was supplied by a friend of the Museum, Morgan C., a Louisiana resident who was eager to get this (and a few other Louisiana taps) into my hands so that he could one day see them profiled here. I was thrilled to get the taps, so I decided Morgan should be able to see them here right away instead of waiting for years. Of the taps Morgan offered me, this Flying Tiger tap is probably my favorite, due to my personal ties to the military and aviation. It features a profile of a P40 Warhawk Flying Tiger airplane, which became the identity of the brewery due to its local ties to General Chennault, who was the commander of the Flying Tigers and lived in Monroe (where the brewery is located) for a time. The detail of the tap is impressive, from the nose art and cockpit decals to all the tiny rivets that have been sculpted across the surface. At the top of the airplane is a round sign that bears the brewery's name and logo. The tap is not variety-specific but is instead used for all beer varieties; I've chosen to profile their WarHawk Kolsch. This tap is definitely one of my favorite recent acquisitions. It's also pretty scarce since I have never seen another.


The First American Volunteer Group (AVG) of the Chinese Air Force in 1941–1942, nicknamed the Flying Tigers, was composed of pilots from the United States Army Air Corps (USAAC), Navy (USN), and Marine Corps (USMC), recruited under President Franklin Roosevelt's authority before Pearl Harbor and commanded by Claire Lee Chennault. The aircraft were to fly with Chinese colors but be under American control. The mission was to bomb Japan and defend China but many delays meant they flew in combat after the US and Japan declared war. The AVG was largely the creation of Chennault, a retired U.S. Army Air Corps officer who had worked in China since August 1937, first as military aviation advisor to Generalissimo Chiang Kai-shek in the early months of the Sino-Japanese War, then as director of a Chinese Air Force flight school centered in Kunming. Meanwhile, the Soviet Union supplied fighter and bomber squadrons to China, but these units were mostly withdrawn by the summer of 1940. Chiang then asked for American combat aircraft and pilots, sending Chennault to Washington as an adviser to China's ambassador and Chiang's brother-in-law, T. V. Soong.
Chennault spent the winter of 1940–1941 in Washington, supervising the purchase of 100 Curtiss P-40 fighters and the recruiting of 100 pilots and some 200 ground crew and administrative personnel that would constitute the 1st AVG. The fighters were purchased without "government-furnished equipment" such as reflector gunsights, radios and wing guns; the lack of these items caused continual difficulties for the AVG in Burma and China. The 100 P-40 aircraft were crated and sent to Burma on third country freighters during spring 1941. At Rangoon, they were unloaded, assembled and test flown by personnel of Central Aircraft Manufacturing Company (CAMCO) before being delivered to the AVG training unit at Toungoo. One crate was dropped into the water and a wing assembly was ruined by salt water immersion, so CAMCO was able to deliver only 99 Tomahawks before war broke out. Shortages in equipment with spare parts almost impossible to obtain in Burma along with the slow introduction of replacement fighter aircraft were continual impediments although the AVG did receive 50 replacement P-40E fighters from USAAF stocks toward the end of its combat tour. AVG fighter aircraft were painted with a large shark face on the front of the aircraft. This was done after pilots saw a photograph of a P-40 of No. 112 Squadron RAF in North Africa, which in turn had adopted the shark face from German pilots of the Luftwaffe's ZG 76 heavy fighter wing, flying Messerschmitt Bf 110 fighters in Crete. The P-40's good qualities included pilot armor, self-sealing fuel tanks, sturdy construction, heavy armament, and a higher diving speed than most Japanese aircraft – qualities that could be used to advantage in accordance with Chennault's combat tactics.

The group consisted of three fighter squadrons of around 30 aircraft each. It trained in Burma before the American entry into World War II to defend China against Japanese forces. The group of volunteers were officially members of the Chinese Air Force. The group first saw combat on 20 December 1941, 12 days after Pearl Harbor (local time). It demonstrated innovative tactical victories when the news in the U.S. was filled with little more than stories of defeat at the hands of the Japanese forces and achieved such notable success during the lowest period of the war for both the U.S. and the Allied Forces as to give hope to America that it might eventually defeat Japan. AVG pilots earned official credit and received combat bonuses for destroying 296 enemy aircraft, while losing only 14 pilots in combat. The combat records of the AVG still exist and researchers have found them credible. On 4 July 1942 the AVG was disbanded and replaced by the 23rd Fighter Group of the United States Army Air Forces, which was later absorbed into the U.S. Fourteenth Air Force with General Chennault as commander. The 23rd FG went on to achieve similar combat success, while retaining the nose art on the left-over P-40s.

Some of the more notable members of the Flying Tigers were:

  • Gregory "Pappy" Boyington, who broke his contract with the AVG in the spring of 1942 and returned to active duty with the U.S. Marine Corps. He went on to command the "Black Sheep" Squadron and was one of two AVG veterans (the other being James H. Howard of the USAAF) to be awarded the Medal of Honor.
  • David Lee "Tex" Hill later commanded the USAAF 23rd Fighter Group.
  • Charles Older earned a law degree postwar, became a California Superior Court judge, and presided at the murder trial of Charles Manson.
  • Kenneth Jernstedt was a long-time Oregon legislator and mayor of his home town of Hood River.
  • Robert William Prescott, founder of the first scheduled cargo airline in America named Flying Tiger Line.

Flying Tiger AVG info and photo courtesy of Wikipedia.

Click through to read more about Flying Tiger Brewing, their WarHawk Kolsch, and to see more photos of this decorated tap...

Sunday, April 7, 2019

Tap Handle #717: Switchback - IPA

Tap size:  13.5"
Rarity:  less than 10 seen
Mounting:  internal 3/8" nut

This tap comes to the Museum courtesy of Collectors Club member Jason C. I'll let Jason describe his contribution to the Museum in his own words:

"This tap represents Switchback's Connector IPA and it is based on the world's tallest filing cabinet. It's kind of a funny story around here and represents the fact that one of our interstates was never completed due to the amount of paperwork that blocked it. Apparently it would take filing cabinets 38 feet tall to store all the paper. It still stands near the Switchback Brewery and is visited quite often by folks traveling to the area. I've always thought it was a funny story and it made me appreciate the tap handle that Switchback created for this beer."

Many thanks to Jason for this background on the tap. I'll admit I thought this tap was a strange one, and now that I know the story behind it, it adds so much more to its character and history. It definitely represents the stack of filing cabinets that Jason mentioned (see photo below). There are drawers popped out on each side, just like they do on the real-life sculpture. The beer name appears all over the tap, but the brewery name only appears in fine print on the very bottom file cabinet, on both sides. It's a great addition to the Museum, as I have only ever seen one or two on the secondary market.



In 2002, Bren Alvarez, a 45-year-old Burlington architect (who also co-owned an art gallery), created "File Under So. Co., Waiting for...," a satirical sculpture commenting on the bureaucracy of urban planning. Over 40 feet tall, the monument sits on a vacant lot, and is essentially a stack of 11 metal filing cabinets in brown, beige, black, gray and green, with a total of 38 drawers, one drawer for every year the project had been in existence at the time of the sculpting. The drawers, some left partially open, are actually now facades that were reattached. The sculpture symbolizes the paperwork that has accumulated since 1965, when the controversial Southern Connector was first proposed to link downtown Burlington (Vermont) with Interstate 89. The purpose of the stalled beltway, which would have stretched about 2.5 miles, was to relieve traffic congestion. The cabinets are welded together and stabilized by an interior steel post. On one side, Alvarez used a blow torch to emblazon a map of the area, along with a timeline in Roman numerals that reflects the phantom road's history from 1965 to the present. Over the decades, as the project experienced one delay after another, the corridor's route and design were changed, often as a result of heated debate.

After the sculpture was completed, a 30-minute play, "Paper Highway", was developed by a local poet, and was performed at the monument's site by a cast of eight, along with the Burlington Taiko drummers. The plot of "Paper Highway" involved people in the year 2552, who find the sculpture and believe it to be an exciting archaeological discovery and an ancient shrine to the gods.

A local politician, when interviewed about the newly completed sculpture, made a bold proclamation that the Connector project would move forward in 2003, and exclaimed that the sculpture would have to be moved. As of 2019, the Connector project is dead, and the sculpture still stands. Adding another 17 file cabinets to the structure (to represent the years 2003-2019) would be incredible, but is entirely unfeasible.


Sculpture article courtesy of Seven Days.

Click through to read more about Switchback Brewing, their Connector IPA, and to see more photos of this iconic tap...

Monday, April 1, 2019

Collector Club Member Spotlight #1: Isaac and Isabelle

Welcome to my first Amazing Tap Handles Collectors Club Member Spotlight post. Here I let club members share their "origin story" about how they got into tap handle collecting. First up are Isaac and Isabelle...click through to read more about their collecting experience, in their own words, and to see photos of their collection...

Monday, March 11, 2019

Tap Handle #716: Dry Dock - Apricot Blonde (original version)

Tap size: 9.25"
Rarity:  less than 10 seen
Mounting:  3/8" ferrule on 5/16" anchor bolt

Back in post #329 I profiled a Dry Dock tap and also the brewery. That tap was initially released around 2012 and continues to be active to present day. Prior to that, however, the brewery used the tap you see here, which dates back to 2006. This version is well constructed and less fragile than the later one. It features a large sailing ship in bas relief, riding on sculpted waves, with an orange-colored backdrop, and is quite beautiful. The name of the brewery appears at the top of the tap as raised letters on a sculpted banner, while the variety appears on a label attached to a square signage area at the bottom front. The back is smooth, with the letters "SC" and a copyright date of '06 appearing on one side. Being an older tap with a far smaller run, this tap is much harder to find than the newer one, but typically sells for about half the cost.

For more about Dry Dock Brewing, see this post.

Click through to see more photos of this rugged tap...

Sunday, February 24, 2019

Tap Handle # 715: Lake Monster - Murmur Milk Stout

Tap size:  11"
Rarity:  less than 10 seen, fragile
Mounting:  internal 3/8" nut

This Lake Monster profile is well overdue, as I had misplaced my original that I picked up a few years ago and have not been able to locate it. Fortunately I was able to pick up another copy and give the tap (and the brewery) its due. At the top of the tap is a large square signage area with the name of the brewery on both sides. The artwork bearing the brewery's name has to be some of the coolest art ever put on a tap. I'm not sure what the shaft of the tap is supposed to be...perhaps a wooden pier? An oval sign on each side allows a label to be placed for the beer variety. But perhaps the most striking feature is the tentacle that wraps around the shaft of the tap. All the little suckers on the tentacle are a great piece of detailing. All the edges of signs and tentacles on the tap protrude out enough to make damage a possibility, usually in the form of chips. The tap has come up on the secondary market occasionally, and although the earlier ones were affordable, a well-used tap now commands a price of around $100 (or even more for a pristine copy).

Click through to read more about Lake Monster Brewing, their Murmur Milk Stout, and to see more photos of this monstrous tap...

Wednesday, February 13, 2019

Tap Handle #714: Freigeist Bierkultur

Tap size:  9"
Rarity:  Less than 10 seen, import, brewed by contract brewer
Mounting:  internal 3/8" nut

This tap comes to the Museum all the way from Germany. Freigeist translates to "Free Spirit" in English, and a ghost coming out of a snifter glass certainly seems like a free spirit. In my mind, the tap has two meanings; first, the free spirit emerging from the glass represents the brewery's craft beer style freeing German beer drinkers from the rigidity and strictness of the Reinheitsgebot, also known as the German Purity Law; and second, that this represents the brewery resurrecting recipes "long dead", those that have been forgotten due to the Reinheitsgebot or for other reasons. It's a very simple design but quite striking. I'm going to be profiling the brewery's Abraxxxas beer, one of the first they ever made. Since the front and back of the tap are a reverse image of each other, I have taken a full amount of photos. I have never seen one on the secondary market, and it should be considered quite scarce, since it is from Germany, and the brewery not only contracts their beer to made by other breweries, it doesn't even have its own website.

Click through to read more about Freigeist Bierkultur, their Abraxxxas beer, and to see more photos of this spirited tap...

Friday, February 8, 2019

Tap Handle #713: Labyrinth

Tap size:  10.5"
Rarity:  less than 10 seen
Mounting:  large 3/8" ferrule on 5/16" anchor bolt

Many thanks to Labyrinth co-founder Sean Gaura for hooking me up with this incredible tap. I will admit to being a history/mythology buff, and played my share of Dungeons and Dragons in my youth, so this one definitely hits a sweet spot for me. The Labyrinth tap depicts the Minotaur (of Greek mythology) gripping a mash paddle while kneeling on a large block. The block has patterns carved in it that represent the Labyrinth (a maze built to contain the Minotaur). A sign on the front and back bears the name and logo of the brewery. I can't tell whether the sign is metal or is made of something else and metal-plated, but it does an amazing job of catching the light and reflecting it back thanks to the metallic sheen. In a very neat twist, the brewery's logo, which also bears an image of the Labyrinth, has a hop in the center. Why is that significant? Because from Classical times through the Renaissance, the Minotaur appears at the center of many depictions of the Labyrinth, so replacing the Minotaur with a hop in the center adds a great beer-related touch to a classical art form. There is no label; instead, the beer variety is written in the empty rectangular box under the sign, similar to a chalkboard. I'm going to profile the brewery's Pan's IPA. A large ferrule at the bottom rounds out the tap. I have to say that the amount of detail is fantastic, as is the marble appearance, and this has to be one of the top taps I've added to the collection recently. It can currently be found on the secondary market, directly from the brewery, and though it is costly, in my opinion it's worth every penny!

In Greek mythology, the Minotaur is a mythical creature portrayed in Classical times with the head and tail of a bull and the body of a man, or, as described by Roman poet Ovid, a being "part man and part bull". He dwelt at the center of the Labyrinth, which was an elaborate maze-like construction designed by the architect Daedalus and his son Icarus, on the command of King Minos of Crete. In Crete, the Minotaur was known by the name Asterion. Minos required that seven Athenian youths and seven maidens, drawn by lots, be sent every seventh or ninth year (some accounts say every year) to be devoured by the Minotaur. When the third sacrifice approached, Theseus volunteered to slay the monster. In Crete, Minos' daughter Ariadne fell madly in love with Theseus and helped him navigate the Labyrinth. In most accounts she gave him a ball of thread, allowing him to retrace his path. Theseus killed the Minotaur with the sword of Aegeus and led the other Athenians back out of the Labyrinth.

Click through to read more about Labyrinth Brewing, their Pan's IPA, and to see more photos of this epic tap...

Tuesday, January 22, 2019

Tap Handle #712: Funky Buddha (Constellation Brands) - Hop Gun IPA

Tap size:  11.25"
Rarity:  none
Mounting:  3/8" ferrule on 5/16" anchor bolt

I wasn't actively pursuing this tap, but when it showed up as part of a group of taps I purchased, I was happy to add it to the collection. It features a profile of Buddha, based on the Spring Temple Buddha statue, with a large round area front and center, that allows a label to be attached with the brewery name and beer variety. There are no markings on the tap itself to indicate that it belongs to Funky Buddha. These were made in a variety of colors, and none of them are rare, although some of the labels can be hard to find. There are actually two versions of the tap, but the differences are in the sculpting and color...they are very minor and hard to detect. You can in fact find many of these on the secondary market at very affordable prices.


The Spring Temple Buddha is a statue depicting Vairocana Buddha located in the Zhaocun township of Lushan County, Henan, China. Construction began in 1997 and was completed in 2008. At 420 feet, including an 82 foot lotus throne, it is the tallest Buddha statue and the second-tallest statue in the world as of 2018. Taking into account the 82 foot pedestal/building atop which it is placed, the monument has a total height of 502 feet. The designer of this giant Buddha statue is Lin Shengbiao, who is a Chinese arts and crafts master. The project as a whole was estimated to cost around $55 million, $18 million of which was to be spent on the statue. It was originally estimated to consist of 1,100 pieces of copper cast, with a total weight of 1,000 tons. Beneath the statue is a Buddhist monastery. The Spring Temple Buddha derives its name from the nearby Tianrui hot spring, whose water, at 140 °F, is renowned in the area for its curative properties.

Spring Temple Buddha information courtesy of Wikipedia.


Click through to read more about Funky Buddha Brewing, their Hop Gun IPA, and to see more photos of this venerable tap...

Saturday, January 12, 2019

Tap Handle #711: Mission Springs - Fat Guy Oatmeal Stout

Tap size:  11.25"
Rarity:  less than 10 seen
Mounting:  internal 3/8" nut

Once again my dad has made a great contribution to the Museum, this time for Christmas. Using his people skills and some local contacts, he managed to secure this fantastic tap. As I've mentioned in previous posts, gas pumps make great mancave taps and this one is no different. It's got a classic look, capturing the glass dome, tall profile, hose and nozzle on the side, and the price reels of an old pump. A sign on the dome that looks almost like a license plate has the name of the brewery on it. Lower is a round area where decals can be applied for the beer variety. The label itself is under a thick, clear bubble. I've seen only one on the secondary market and it sold for well over $100.

Click through to read more about Mission Springs Brewing, their Fat Guy Oatmeal Stout, and to see more photos of this nostalgic tap...

Sunday, January 6, 2019

Tap Handle #710: Hatuey (Santiago Brewing/Bacardi)

Tap size:  12.25" tall by 4.25" deep
Rarity:  less than 10 seen
Mounting:  large 3/8" ferrule

In my recent anniversary post regarding upcoming profiles, this tap is one that made the list. This is mostly due to the great history of the beer, as well as the scarcity of the tap. The top of the tap depicts a likeness of Hatuey, a native of Hispaniola that fought against the Spanish Conquest and for whom the beer is named after. Below that is a four-sided sign featuring the name of the beer. The base is sculpted to make it appear as if it has ceramic and leather elements, and the ferrule is of a larger size. Overall, the tap is quite striking and very heavy. I included a depth measurement because the feathers make the tap a little deeper than other taps, and might be important to a collector with space restrictions. Mine has a few paint chips here and there but no real damage. These date to 2011 when the brewery resumed U.S. operations...not many were produced and they have become very hard to find. When they do appear on the secondary market, they typically sell for close to $200 or even double that amount.


Hatuey was a Taíno cacique (chief) originally from the island of Hispaniola (present day Haiti and Dominican Republic), who lived in the early sixteenth century and fled to Cuba during the Spanish conquest. He has attained legendary status for leading a group of natives in a fight against the invading Spaniards, and thus becoming one of the first fighters against colonialism in the New World. He is celebrated as "Cuba's First National Hero". In 1511, Diego Velázquez set out from Hispaniola to conquer the island of Cuba (Taino as it was named by Columbus). However, Hatuey had already fled Hispaniola with a party of four hundred in canoes, and warned some of the Native people of eastern Cuba about what to expect from the Spaniards. The Taino chiefs in Cuba did not respond to Hatuey's message, and few joined him to fight. Hatuey resorted to guerrilla tactics against the Spaniards, and was able to confine them for a time. He and his fighters were able to kill at least eight Spanish soldiers, which was an impressive feat given the primitive weapons of Hatuey and his fighters and the armor of the Spaniards. Eventually, using mastiffs and torturing the Native people for information, the Spaniards succeeded in capturing Hatuey. On February 2, 1512, he was tied to a stake and burned alive at Yara, near the present-day city of Bayamo.


Information on Hatuey the Taíno cacique and photo courtesy of Wikipedia.

Click through to read more about Hatuey Beer and to see more photos of this legendary tap. Note that although Hatuey is supposed to be all caps, I chose not to write it up this way due to the internet etiquette of "yelling"...

Tuesday, December 18, 2018

Tap Handle #709: Original Joe's - Light

Tap size:  11"
Rarity:  less than 10 seen, contract beer
Mounting:  3/8" ferrule on 5/16" anchor bolt

This beautiful tap was featured in one of my recent anniversary posts about upcoming profiles, and as I mentioned in that post, it is my second favorite tap that Original Joe's has produced. Featuring a blond woman in a red polka dot bikini, there is a blue and white surfboard in front of her that has the symbol and name of the brewery in raised letters, and under that is the word "Light", also in raised letters. Despite the number of Original Joe's in existence, the brewery keeps tight control over all of their taps, and as a result the taps can be extremely difficult to obtain. I've seen a couple of these hit the secondary market, and they both went for over $300. Wow!

Click through to read more about Original Joe's, their Light lager, and to see more photos of this fun-loving tap...

Wednesday, December 12, 2018

Tap Handle #708: J.T. Whitney's - Badger Red Ale

Tap size:  10"
Rarity:  less than 10 seen, brewery closed
Mounting:  3/8" ferrule on 5/16" anchor bolt

This is another tap in the Bill Gibson wing (thanks Bill!), and was also mentioned in Part 4 of the "Museum Turns 7 Years Old" anniversary posts, as I was very much looking forward to telling this brewery's story. It is a tragic tale, which you can read about after the jump, in which the owner tried something illegal to save the brewery, at a great personal cost. Sometimes when we drink beer we don't think about the lives behind the scenes that are impacted by the ups and downs of the business, and this story offers a sobering perspective. As for the tap, I really love the red-eyed badger hanging over the wooden sign. Badger mascots are big in Wisconsin, where the brewery was located. The letters on the sign are sculpted for a slightly 3-D look, and they indicate the name of the beer, with the name of the brewery in smaller letters. The base is pretty plain, so I reduced the number of photos taken for some angles of the base. Since the brewery has been gone for 9 years, the tap, as you can imagine, is quite scarce - I don't think I've ever seen another.

Click through to read more about J.T. Whitney's Brewing, their award-winning Badger Red Ale, and to see more photos of this fierce tap...

Tuesday, December 11, 2018

Tap Giveaway #14 Results - UPDATE

Martin has claimed his prize, so this contest is officially over.

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Thank you to the 13 participants who entered the contest in order to win a free tap. The winner of this contest, chosen at random is:

Martin A.

Martin has 48 hours to claim his prize. If he does not respond within that time frame, I will choose another winner.

If you didn't win, don't be discouraged, I'll be giving away more taps early next year!

Saturday, December 8, 2018

Tap Giveaway #14 Announcement

It's time for another tap giveaway! This will be the 14th contest that the Museum has sponsored. Previous tap contest entries and winners were:

#1 - East Coast Taps nautical theme - won by Denis G. (out of 3 entries received for trivia contest)
#2 - Florida Keys mermaid - won by Sean W. (out of 6 entries received)
#3 - Big Dawg - won by Charlie W. (out of 4 entries received)
#4 - Beer Army - won by Ariel N. (out of 15 entries received)
#5 - Beer Army #2 - won by Larry C. (out of 14 entries received)
#6 - Red Hook Seedy Blonde - won by Bill S. (out of 13 entries received)
#7 - Leinenkugal IPL - won by John P. (out of 12 entries received)
#8 - Shiner Smokehaus - won by Graham B. (out of 12 entries received)
#9 - Haacht Rince Cochon - won by Blair B. (out of 15 entries received)
#10 - Hobgoblin (new style) x 2 - won by Patrick M. and Doug K. (out of 22 entries received)
#11 - Celt Thirsty Warrior - won by Jeff H. (out of 16 entries)
#12 - Leinenkugal IPL - won by Ken M. (out of 5 entries received)
#13 - Small Town Brewery Not Your Father's Root Beer - won by Al L. (out of 13 entries)

Market value of taps given away to date: approximately $740


This contest will be the same as the previous one...I'm giving the winner their choice of one of the following three taps:

Tap #1: Leinenkugal IPL - The tap is new and unused in its original box. This is the same tap given away in contests #7 and #12. It is made to look like a wooden post with signs nailed to it.











Tap #2: Small Town Brewery Not Your Father's Root Beer - The tap is new and unused in the box. A small ship sits on top of a barrel. The base is copper colored with a beautiful extra large copper colored ferrule. This is tap that was chosen by the winner in contest #13.











Tap #3: Exile torch - The tap is used but in excellent condition in the original box. It looks like a torch that you might see on the Statue of Liberty except it's black with a gold flame, gold lettering and an extra large gold colored ferrule. There is no label and the sticker has been removed from the bottom of the ferrule; otherwise it's in great condition.









All entries for the previous tap will automatically be entered into this contest. For those who didn't enter last time, you need only submit your name through the "Contact Me" feature in the sidebar, or email me if we've been in contact previously. I'm running this contest for a shorter period due to the upcoming holidays, so I will choose one winner at random on Tuesday, December 11th, so you have until Monday, December 10th, 11:59 pm PST to enter. Once I announce the winner they will have 48 hours to respond to my email or I will choose a new winner. The two taps which are not chosen will be used for future giveaways. Good luck!

Monday, December 3, 2018

Tap Giveaway #13 Results

UPDATE

Al has claimed his prize. This contest is officially over.

--------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------

Thank you to the 13 participants who entered the contest in order to win a free tap. The winner of this contest, chosen at random is:

Al L.

Al has 48 hours to claim his prize. If he does not respond within that time frame, I will choose another winner.

If you didn't win, don't be discouraged...I'm giving away another tap next week! Everyone in this contest that didn't win will automatically be entered in the next one. Stay tuned right here for more details!

Thursday, November 29, 2018

Tap Handle #707: Newfoundland (Molson) - Moose Pale Ale

Tap size:  10.5" by 4" wide
Rarity:  less than 10 seen, beer retired, fragile
Mounting:  3/8" ferrule on 5/16" anchor bolt

Back in tap profile #657, I mentioned the "Bill Gibson Wing", and how much Bill had contributed to the Museum. I'm now working through the portion of the collection that contains many of the taps that he supplied me with. Several of these are early examples of resin taps that have historical value. Moose Pale Ale is one such example, with a bas relief of the head of a moose and lots of fragile antler points attached to the tap base. There are also antler points sticking out away from the tap, creating a very unique-looking piece. The words "Moose Pale Ale" are on a decal running vertically down the base. The back of the tap is flat, with no markings indicating artist or date. There are a couple of drips of clear coat that have run down and pooled on the back, but don't affect the appearance of the front. The tap is a little wider than most at 4". It is very scarce...information was very tough to come by, since the brewery was absorbed by Molson in the 1960s, and the Moose Pale Ale brand was discontinued in the late 1990s or early 2000s, not long after this tap was made. I have only ever seen one other.

Click though to read more about Newfoundland Brewing, their Moose Pale Ale, and to see more photos of this tap...

Saturday, November 24, 2018

Tap Giveaway #13 Announcement and Details

It's time for another tap giveaway! This will be the 13th contest that the Museum has sponsored. Previous tap contest entries and winners were:

#1 - East Coast Taps nautical theme - won by Denis G. (out of 3 entries received for trivia contest)
#2 - Florida Keys mermaid - won by Sean W. (out of 6 entries received)
#3 - Big Dawg - won by Charlie W. (out of 4 entries received)
#4 - Beer Army - won by Ariel N. (out of 15 entries received)
#5 - Beer Army #2 - won by Larry C. (out of 14 entries received)
#6 - Red Hook Seedy Blonde - won by Bill S. (out of 13 entries received)
#7 - Leinenkugal IPL - won by John P. (out of 12 entries received)
#8 - Shiner Smokehaus - won by Graham B. (out of 12 entries received)
#9 - Haacht Rince Cochon - won by Blair B. (out of 15 entries received)
#10 - Hobgoblin (new style) x 2 - won by Patrick M. and Doug K. (out of 22 entries received)
#11 - Celt Thirsty Warrior - won by Jeff H. (out of 16 entries)
#12 - Leinenkugal IPL - won by Ken M. (out of 5 entries received)


For this contest I'm giving the winner their choice of one of the following three taps:

Tap #1: Leinenkugal IPL - The tap is new and unused in its original box. This is the same tap given away in contests #7 and #12. It is made to look like a wooden post with signs nailed to it.











Tap #2: Small Town Brewery Not Your Father's Root Beer - The tap is new and unused in the box. A small ship sits on top of a barrel. The base is copper colored with a beautiful extra large copper colored ferrule.










Tap #3: Exile torch - The tap is used but in excellent condition in the original box. It looks like a torch that you might see on the Statue of Liberty except it's black with a gold flame, gold lettering and an extra large gold colored ferrule. There is no label and the sticker has been removed from the bottom of the ferrule; otherwise it's in great condition.









To enter the contest, you need only submit your name through the "Contact Me" feature in the sidebar, or email me if we've been in contact previously. I will choose one winner at random on Saturday, December 1st, so you have until Friday, November 30th, 11:59 pm PST to enter. Once I announce the winner they will have 48 hours to respond to my email or I will choose a new winner. The two taps which are not chosen will be used for future giveaways. Good luck!

Wednesday, November 21, 2018

The Museum Turns 7 Years Old, Part 4: Upcoming Tap Profiles

A couple of years ago I added a new feature that was essentially a sneak peak of upcoming profiles. Although some of those profiles still haven't made an appearance due to various reasons, I felt that the topic was worth revisiting. So click through to find out the top 10 profiles I hope to get on the site over the next year...

Wednesday, November 14, 2018

The Museum Turns 7 Years Old, Part 3: Top 10 Taps Acquired This Year

Although my number of acquisitions were at an all-time low for the Museum this year, I loved the quality of the taps I acquired, and I thought it would be great to share these taps with my readers when you wouldn't see them otherwise for years. I've already profiled many great new acquisitions this past year, such as River Mile 38, Down the Road, Narrows, Sterling Pig, Swilled Dog, Eastern Shore, Snake Bite, Outer Light, Queen City, Andrews, Next Level, and multiple Parallel 49 taps. Since those taps have already appeared on the site, in this post I'm going to focus on taps that have not been profiled yet. Click through to see the taps, which have been presented in no particular order...

Saturday, November 10, 2018

The Museum Turns 7 Years Old, Part 2: Individual Tap Statistics

It's time to take a look at the individual tap statistics. To revisit the concept, I'm listing which taps generate the most page views on the site. I've divided the rankings based on the year that I profiled the tap, so I've listed the 20 taps with the most views for Year 1, Year 2, Year 3, Year 4, Year 5, and Year 7. Since fewer taps were profiled in Year 6, only the top 10 will be ranked for that year. The number in parenthesis is the previous year's ranking if different; "NR" means the tap was not on the list last year. The first tap on the list has the most views, and the other taps follow in descending order.

For this go-around, there was quite a bit of movement, even for the early years, that I found surprising, although some taps are only separated by 2-3 page views. Also, one of the top taps from a previous year, Mellow Mushroom's Bogart, lost its spot, which was very surprising given that the collector's club recently selected that tap as their choice for the #1 tap.

Click through to see the lists..