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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Scarcity Guide

Multiple people (including my dad) have asked what the definitions are for the terms that I use for scarcity descriptions. I have used the terms "scarce", "very rare", "rare", "uncommon", and "common", but what does that really mean?  This is more difficult to explain than it appears, because the rarity has been my subjective definition. In my "Welcome to Amazing Tap Handles" post, I describe some of the factors that can make a tap scarce, but there aren't really any hard and fast rules - it's more of a kind of "feeling" I have, based on 20 years of collecting. In a few cases I have some clues or second hand information about production run numbers, and much of it is based on secondary market data, but it's really an arbitrary system.

I've decided to remove the previous rarity ratings of common through scarce, and in place of those vague one word categories, I'm going to use more descriptive terms that allow the reader to decide how rare the tap is. Price will not be a factor in determining rarity. The descriptive terms are defined as follows...

10 or less: I've seen 10 or less of the tap on the secondary market. Taps with chips, breaks, or missing labels (where labels would add to the value) are typically not counted. Examples would be Charleston Lagerhead Lager or Chameleon Fire Light.

50 or less: same description as 10 or less, except I've seen more than 10 but less than 50 on the secondary market. Examples would be Harbor Barrel or Coors rattlesnake.

Readily available:  the tap appears regularly on the secondary market (on average), or it is available through other means. Examples would be Newcastle Bombshell or Sea Dog.

Brewery closed:  the brewery that the tap belongs to is no longer in business. Examples would be Catamount or Panther Brewing.

Small scale:  a very small brewery that would order only a few taps, or might not even have a physical location and use contract brewing to produce their beer. Or the tap could be for a beer contract brewed for a restaurant or brewpub. Examples would be Jonas Bronck's or Roadhouse peanut.

Beer retired:  the beer that the tap belongs to is no longer produced by the brewery. Examples would be Hussong's Dark or Weinhard's Red.

Limited release: the beer that the tap belongs to, or the tap itself, was only made for a limited time. Examples would be CB Craft Brewers Caged Alpha Monkey or Samuel Adams Grumpy Monk.

Seasonal:  the beer that the tap belongs to is a seasonal release that is served once a year. Examples would be Widmer Brrr Winter Ale or Blue Point Blueberry Ale.

Special event:  the beer that the tap belongs to was brewed for a special event. It might mean that the tap was created for a special event, but once the event is over the tap is no longer used, even if the beer is still in production. Examples would be Yards Franklin or Mule Kick.

Import: the beer the tap belongs to is imported into the U.S. from another country. Examples would be Cucapa Chupacabra or Lederer Premium Pils.

Hand-made:  the tap is molded and painted by hand, carved from wood, or crafted from metal. This naturally limits the number that can be produced. Examples would be Steam Whistle or Roots.

Fragile:  the tap has parts that can break off easily. It may also use materials that are be more easily damaged than standard tap materials, such as glass or thin acrylic. Examples would be Moose Drool and Jose Cuervo Margarita.

Prototype: the tap was created to conceptualize an idea or to give a client some options to choose from, but was never put into production. Usually only one or a few are made. No current examples.

I'm calling this my "Scarcity Guide", which appears as a separate page on the site. There will be a link in the sidebar that opens up this page.

It will take me some time to update my previous posts. I'll start with current taps and work my way backwards...

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