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Local Brewing Brush Strokes

Photo courtesy of Palmetto Brewing

Art is everywhere in Charleston, South Carolina, in both familiar and unexpected places. It hangs in galleries, is painted on walls of buildings, and can even be found on the label of our local beers.

Palmetto Brewery (PB), Charleston’s oldest existing brewery has created entirely new labels for their beers (with contemporary Charleston art in mind). “As beer culture in Charleston evolves and as we evolve, our packing symbolizes that the beer in those bottles is not the same, and [we’re] not the same,” says Chris Winn, marketing manager.

Designed by PB’s biggest-fan and typeface-junkie Gil Shuler, each new bottle of will feature a palmetto tree painted by a local artist. The first artist commissioned was Louis Bruce, a retiring co-owner of PB and a visual artist. Other artists such as David Boatwright and Mickey Williams will also contribute custom painted palmettos to one of the four year-round PB brews, as well as to small batches in limited release. But as the Palmetto Brewery grows and evolves, it doesn’t forget its Charleston roots. The team also looked to the very beginnings of their brewery in the 1850s for artistic inspiration, too, and have includes images of historic Charleston maps and vintage sale bills on their beer’s packaging.

Winn says, “The process of making beer and growing a homegrown brewery is an artistic endeavor in and of itself—in constant flux and change.” Here’s to the new labels, a little art you can pour into a glass.

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