The Beer Buckle gets Twisted

The Beer Clothing Company, the Central City firm that graced the world with its (patent-pending) Beer Buckle, has landed a contract with Boston Beer (the maker of Sam Adams) to manufacture Beer Buckles branded with the Twisted Tea logo.

The Beer Buckle is a genius creation: a belt buckle that folds down to reveal a retractable, spring-loaded brass ring that can safely cradle a bottle or a can. The company was founded in the fall of 1998 by Jay Kriner, a former Texan who now calls Colorado home, and has sold hundreds of buckles in more than twenty states.

Twisted Tea, which is iced tea spiked with 5 percent alcohol, has purchased a limited quantity of buckles to use in its marketing campaign, with the intention of ordering a few thousand, Kriner says in an e-mail. "Boston Beer Company thought our product best fit the Twisted consumer," he explains.

Kriner says he's talking with several other breweries about custom buckles, including Oskar Blues Brewery in Lyons, Louisville-based Rock Bottom, Alaskan Brewing and Shiner Brewing Company.

Up next? Kriner will be at the Great American Beer Festival this September for the second year in a row, selling buckles, clothing and possibly a new product: a toilet paper dispenser that also holds a beer - a product that has been waiting for its day in the sun. He would also like to open stores in Colorado and Texas.

"Sham-WOW and the Snuggie will never be so cool!" he promises.

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