A common theme flowing through the lips of everyone now that Covid 19 has taken over our attention and changed every aspect of our daily life is how we are all in this together. You see it everywhere, from cities turned blue with appreciation of those in the health care industry, to movements like supporting the local economy in your daily life via breweries and pubs (see our recent post “Make Tomorrow Happy with Beer” for more information). In addition to being early supporters of this locally spurred initiative, participating in All Together, a project hosted by Other Half Brewing of New York, was another one that immediately had the three of us on board from the outset.
The idea is simple in concept but novel in its execution. One common recipe is shared between every participating brewery, as are all of the promotional materials associated with label design. Each brewery brews the recipe, making adjustments based upon their system constraints, personal tastes, or ingredients available. The proceeds of which go to two causes: supporting hospitality professionals and staying in business during this tumultuous time.
What is in it for the brewery? At its simplest, as a brewery that has placed a significant amount of value on the learning and friendship embodied in collaborative brewing, it is pretty cool to say we are making a beer with 558 breweries across 39 countries (as of the time of posting)! What is more, the realization that the product that we all craft not only plays an essential role in bringing happiness and joy to the social gatherings where they are enjoyed, but also helps provide a livelihood for the people involved in making that happen.
What is in it for the consumer? In addition to great beer, you also get to support great causes! We highly recommend trying the All Together brew from each participating brewery (see below) to see how the same recipe comes out entirely different depending on where and how it is made. Each brewery is selecting a different organization to donate to, so by supporting all of us, you also support a myriad of great initiatives.
What is in it for all of us? First, the realisation that we are all connected not only within this industry, but also as we struggle through the difficult times that this virus has created for everyone. While seemingly obvious, this fact is easily overlooked in the hustle and bustle of everyday life, and it has taken a global pandemic for us to reaffirm this simple truth. Finally, we hope that this project serves as a reminder that there are little things we can do every day to reach out and help others who are struggling.
We here at Kyoto Brewing Co. will be supporting Kyoto Lockdown, a crowdfunding campaign initiated by bars and restaurants in Kyoto City. Despite a State of Emergency being declared for many of Japan’s larger cities, Kyoto was left off the list. Realizing the severity of the situation, the organizers of the campaign self-imposed a “lockdown” on their businesses, selflessly closing them in order to prevent further spreading of Covid 19. This decision imposes obvious risks to the survival of the establishment, so the campaign was started to raise funds that could be distributed in hopes of easing the economic pain surrounding the closure. The extreme locality of the project in addition to the selfless action on behalf of its organizers felt like the perfect way to further the ideals of the All Together movement.
We are extremely happy to see that we are not the only ones believing in the All Together project, and at the time of posting Derailleur Brew Works (Osaka), Kyoto Beer Lab (Kyoto), Matsumoto Brewing (Nagano), NOMCRAFT Brewing (Wakayama), Two Rabbits Brewing Company (Shiga), Uchu Brewing (Yamanashi), Ushitora Brewing (Tochigi), VERTERE (Tokyo), West Coast Brewing (Shizuoka) have also signed up. We are hoping that the collaborative spirit of this project can carry through with its implementation and rollout here in Japan and seeing if something creative can be done between all of the participants. Stay tuned for details!