Hercules is a bald eagle, born and raised at the Raptor centre in Duncan, BC, on Vancouver Island. He is only four years old, but he has already become a big celebrity and movie star. Even before his snowy white feathers have fully developed, Hercules has started a career as an ambassador for bald eagles and birds of prey everywhere. He has even starred onscreen alongside another local celebrity, David Suzuki.
Recently, Hercules was assigned his most awe-inspiring assignment yet: delivering precious golden cargo – specifically Phillips’ Brewing & Malting Co.’s new Pilsner – to two lucky contest winners. For the past six weeks, hopeful beer-and-eagle lovers entered online at beerfromabird.com to win a beer delivery from Hercules. The winners’ names were beak-chosen by Hercules himself.
Unfortunately for Hercules, an intervention from the Ministry has prevented him from becoming the first eagle to deliver beer – he is underage, after all. Rather than disappoint his chosen winners, Hercules and Phillips’ partnered to find a new way to deliver beer from above. On June 5, a drone decorated like a bald eagle successfully delivered the new pilsner to the chosen winners. Hercules, not satisfied with being written out of his own contest, was actually at the controls of the drone.
If you’ve tried Phillips’ beer before, you’re likely aware that they like to do things a bit differently. Where some breweries find something that works and stick with it, Phillips constantly pushes the envelope, never afraid to get a little bit weird.
“When we consider why we should do something, we often find the best answer to be ‘why not,'” Matt Phillips, founder of Phillips Brewing, said. “That’s why we transformed a 53-foot tractor trailer into the ultimate mobile pub, and why we’re the only brewery in Canada to malt our own barley in-house. Plus, eagles are majestic, bold, and beautiful; beer is often the same.”
Although the contest is over, you can still visit the site to watch footage of Hercules training for his big flight, selecting his recipients, and starring in a new Mark Gormley music video.
Phillips’ flagship beer, Blue Buck Ale, is a staple at bars and restaurants around the city. Their full repertoire includes the hoppier Bottle Rocket ISA , Amnesiac IPA and Hop Circle IPA, and flavoured beers like the Longboat chocolate porter, Ginger Beer ale, and summer favourite Electric Unicorn IPA – a “mono-horned laser beast” flavoured with banana and citrus fruits that is only sold during the summer months.
Hercules has been prevented from continuing his serving career with Phillips’ Brewing, but you can pick up your own case of their new pilsner by hand at your local liquor store.