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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.

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Friday, April 1, 2016

Tap Handle #588: Anthem - Uroboros Stout

Tap size:  11.5"
Rarity:  Scarce
Mounting:  internal 3/8" nut

Anthem's tap handle is one of my favorite new additions to the collection, because if you follow this site, you know I love industrial and steampunk themed taps. It features a curious-looking black orb on top of a long cylindrical shaft that is loaded with intricate details like pipes, hoses, vents, and buttons. The copper color is gorgeous, and is highlighted in various places with red tones. In what is a unique feature, the labels are actually printed on rigid plastic, and a slot is provided in the front of the tap that allows the label to simply slide in. It gives a durability to the labels, and makes changing them out a is so innovative I'm surprised we don't see more of this type of label design. I received two labels, Uroboros Stout and Golden One. The Golden One label is more colorful (see photo to right), but I like the fantasy-like lettering and the small skull and crossbones on the top and bottom of the Uroboros label a little better, and so have chosen to profile the beer sounds delicious! You may be curious about the black orb on top, as was I, so I was able to dig up some information provided by Anthem founder Matt Anthony:

"The Anthem logo was created by my very talented designer and friend, Marc Bostian. I started working with Marc early on in the planning stages. One day we met for him to show me several different ideas and designs he had. From the instant I saw it I fell in love and knew that was going to be the logo. The hand drawn organic figure balanced with the clean lines of the text were a perfect example of what I was shooting for with the beer: handmade  sophistication...I can certainly appreciate everyone’s interpretation. That said, it is a person. The misshapen eyes, star mouth and giant star on his forehead, all make me think of some imaginary place where he came from. Where everyone was “perfect,” symmetrical and identical. A place where everyone was expected to follow the same path in life. But this little guy knew he wanted something different. He knew he wanted to strike out and follow his own path, no matter the risk. What I see in him is a person, perfect in his imperfection. A true individual. He has no name, at least not yet. Marc and I have just been calling him The Imp. Maybe one day he’ll get a name. Until then, I think people will have an easier time seeing what he is when they see our tap handles next month."

Currently this tap is scarce - I have only seen a few others - and this scarcity, when combined with the industrial/steampunk design, suggests the tap will command a hefty price on the secondary market.

Click through to read more about Anthem Brewing, their Uroboros Stout, and to see more photos of this imaginative tap...

Anthem Brewing was founded in Oklahoma City, Oklahoma in 2012 by Matt Anthony. Originally from Tulsa, Oklahoma, Anthony starting working as a motion graphics artist, video editor and photographer at Save the Children when his girlfriend (now his wife) gave him a Mr. Beer kit for Christmas in 2000. At the time, he thought that the beer he brewed with it was the best beer he’d ever had. Later a coworker invited him over to help him brew an extract batch using a kit he bought from The Brew Shop, which led to Anthony purchasing his own kit. His homebrewing was sporadic until 2004 when he began brewing more regularly. In 2005, something clicked while he was bottling beer and he knew he wanted to start a brewery. To learn as much as he could, he started reading trade magazines and books and listened to podcasts.

In 2006 he made the move to all grain brewing, after buying an old all-grain system. Originally he was going to name the brewery "The Brothers Stout", but his wife and others convinced him to change it so that people wouldn't think that he only made stouts. He finally decided on the name Anthem. From 2009 to 2011, he started traveling to beer events and breweries across the U.S. and Europe, in an effort to get a feel for the industry. After jotting down copious amounts of notes and ideas, he developed his business plan around beers that he felt were an expression of individualism rather than standard, rigid recipes. In 2012 he left his job with Feed the Children to start Anthem Brewing full time. He experienced a few setbacks as he began brewing at the OK City Brewing Cooperative, which allowed some doubt to creep in as to whether he had made the right decision, but he persevered through his reservations. Golden One, a Belgian blonde ale that Anthony chose to brew as his first beer, debuted at the Oklahoma Craft Beer Festival, and was also Anthem’s first production beer. However, Anthem suffered a serious setback when OK City Brewing was destroyed by a tornado in 2013.

Anthem survived without a place to brew for several months, thanks in large part to Anthony's wife, who supported them during the difficult time, and his partners and investors. In 2014 he found a location in the Farmers Market District just southwest of downtown Oklahoma City and once again began producing Golden One for draft sales. Later that year he released Golden One in cans and introduced Arjuna, a belgian-style white ale, and Uroboros, a stout. Due to the number of beers in the world that made it hard to find an original name, Anthony chose his beer names from books he was reading,, thinking that they would be obscure enough to be unique. By the end of 2014, Anthem had produced around 930 barrels that year and was focusing heavily on beers aged in barrels that previously held whiskey, tequila, rum, brandy and wine. However, in a sudden and unexplained development, Anthony decided to call it quits and return to film production and motion graphics, selling his ownership in the brewery to Patrick Lively, who had joined Anthem after coming from COOP Ale Works. Anthony still provides the brewery support with recipes and label artwork.

In 2015 Anthem formed a partnership with Energy FC, Oklahoma City's professional soccer team. Energy FC named Anthem as its official craft beer; Anthem's beers were served at home games, and the two companies collaborated on Upper 90 Pale Ale, a co-branded beer, with the name chosen by fans in a contest. Anthem also began distribution into the Dallas, Texas market. The brewery’s current core lineup includes Anthem IPA, Arjuna, Golden One, and Uroboros, with a couple of seasonal varieties and several special release beers.

Uroboros (pronounced OR-OH-BOR-US) is a stout reborn as a Belgian-inspired creation. Roasted and chocolate malts, dark candi sugar, oak spirals, and Belgian yeast circle in harmonious union. Recommended food pairings are hummus, grass-fed beef, aged cheddar, and dark chocolate.

Ratebeer weighted average:  3.54 out of 5
Beer Advocate:  87 out of 100 (very good)

Anthem Brewing Company
908 SW 4th St
Oklahoma City, Oklahoma 73109

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