So, what does a craft beer company do when Covid-19 restrictions prevent brewers from making beer at a brewery?
7 Bridges Brewing Company in Danang, Vietnam, is no stranger to coping with Covid-19 related challenges – it was the first craft beer brewery in Vietnam to deal with Covid-19 when its entire team went into quarantine in March 2020 following exposure to tourists who tested positive to the virus.
The pandemic has forced the company to think ahead, respond quickly to threats and adapt to a new reality.
As a craft beer company, we love innovation, but we hate gimmicksStanley Boots, co-founder, 7 Bridges Brewing Co.
“Covid has been bad for the numbers, of course, but it’s been a powerful catalyst for our innovation,” says Stanley Boots, co-founder of 7 Bridges Brewing Co. “It might turn out to be a blessing in disguise.”
During this lost summer of rolling local and national lockdowns, the 7 Bridges Brewing Co. team refused to be thwarted by restrictions and so turned its creative energy to “brewing for the Metaverse” – a newly-emerging digital world that is becoming a reality.
The results are spectacular.
Partnership with Trace Network Labs
7 Bridges Brewing Co. has partnered with Trace Network Labs to announce the largest craft beer NFT (non-fungible token) drop on the planet and the Metaverse with \iNFTy – a Grand Cru Ale that brings craft beer into the digital world.
Only 99 bottles of the brew will be released in a sequential countdown on Trace’s new Bling NFT marketplace.
Each \iNFTy stands as a unique NFT digital work with its counterpart physical bottle cellared in the real world until February 29, 2024.
Stanley explains the background and philosophy behind the move.
“After a year of facing Covid related barriers, we decided in February that 7 Bridges needed a digital strategy, and that of course it should include a move into the Metaverse with NFTs.
“We launched our \iNFTy project with a goal for a May release to allow
us to claim to be the first NFT brewery in the world to do so, but we wanted to do this right.
“As a craft beer company, we love innovation, but we hate gimmicks. We therefore set the goal for our first NFT to actually be backed by a physical brew.
“Both the NFT and the brew have to align and represent our brand’s commitment to quality and innovation. This led to our idea of a limited edition NFT with its “reverse avatar” being a limited edition strong beer that cellars well so that the NFT buyer actually has a chance to claim the physical beer in the future.
“With \iNFTy, we got to where we wanted to be. The NFT artwork is truly unique. The beer is great and getting better as it cellars.
“Our timeline slipped and we were beaten on releasing the first beer NFT, but our NFT drop of 99 bottles is quality and worth being deemed a first of its kind.
“We think a lot of breweries will look more closely at NFTs as a part of telling their story and rewarding customers. \iNFTy is our first step. Watch this space.”
Each \iNFTy bottle is a unique beautiful NFT artwork reflected by its cellared physical incarnation.
The NFT auction on Bling will start with \iNFTy 99, the first NFT beer in the world with a claimable physical incarnation – a reverse avatar.
\iNFTy thrills the mouth and nose with deep and complex cacao, toffee raisin and candied plum notes, finishing off with just a hint of bourbon and caramelized sugar.
It’s so rich and smooth without harsh alcohol notes, despite its robust 12% ABV and 35 IBU. Savor \iNFTy with a friend, like a fine wine.
Pairs well with grilled lamb, roasted fennel, chocolate and a billionaire’s trip to space.