When you think of Belgian beers, you think of great tasting and highly rated beers, however, you might also think of the rather old-fashioned beer labels. Achel, one of the 6 trappist breweries noticed this as well and wanted to explore a new label for the trappist beers.
The brewery at the Achel Abbey, commonly known as “the Achelse Kluis” brewed it’s first beer in 1852. Unfortunately, at the start of World War I, the monks brewing the beer left the monastery and the brewery was dismantled by the German troops to salvage any copper. In 1998 the brewery starting brewing again and became the a fully functioning trappist brewery.
The label has remained unchanged since 1998 when the monks started brewing beer again. After 20 years of brewing and selling the beers, the monks wanted to explore other alternative options for the label.
Maarten Elens, at It’s Me, has taken on the difficult task to rebrand the now historic Achel trappist beers, including the label, the packaging, bottle cap as well as the logo.
“After presenting the proposals to the wider team at Achel, it was decided to keep the old (current) label. The current label is very recognizable and sombre, a force that we wish to keep for the time being. Today a makeover of label and bottle cap is no longer on the agenda.” Robrecht Ulenaers, marketing manager at Achel, confirmed.
The sombre labels are also in line with the sombre lifestyle of the monks who brew the trappist beers. While the new labels aren’t over the top craft beer-like like some of the other labels we have seen for Belgian beers, another important factor of course is having a recognizable brand.
At the end of the day, the monks aren’t brewing the beer for profit, but they are brewing the beer to maintain their lifestyle and upkeep of the monastery so any changes in branding need to be carefully considered.
While the Achel Trappist labels won’t be changing anytime soon, we do want to share them with you and highlight the work which Maarten has produced. What do you think, should brewery stick with the recognizable and sombre labels or the new modern labels from Maarten?
Let us know what you think of these Achel Trappist beer labels! Also check out Maarten Elens other work on his website.