Goose Island is a brewery that is based out of Chicago and has been making craft beer since 1988, well before craft beer became the huge business that it is today. They make a range of tasty beverages and over the years have expanded their footprint and they are no longer just a local Midwest micro brewery, but a national brand with huge distribution.
We had the chance to meet some of the crew from Goose Island 2 years ago at the first Fyxation Open fixed gear street crit that we hosted in the heart of Chicago. The race was held in downtown Chicago right outside the Goose Island brewery in an industrial part of the city. While hanging out with one of their new brewers, we arranged an exchange of some Goose Island beer for some of our made in Milwaukee leather goods. Little did we know at the time, that we just sowed the seeds of a much larger project with our new friends at Goose Island.
Late in 2015, the guys from Goose Island reached out to us to see if we'd be able to help them make a run of 1 year anniversary bikes for their employees. Here at Fyxation, we do both large and small batches of custom bicycles for companies looking for their own bike for a variety of reasons. Whether they're looking to offer an employee incentive, unique marketing vehicle, offering hotel guests a way to get out and see their city or to promote employee wellness, our custom bike program has really taken off the last few years.
Goose Island was looking for a custom branded bike that was well styled, included some minimal corporate branding and one that also represented the city of Chicago. After getting some initial feedback from the crew at Goose, our creative team got to work. The end result is an amazing bike that was one of our best custom bikes to date. The little details that were added from the Goose headbadge to the Chicago flag stars on the seat tube, really made this bike a stunner.
Rather than simply shipping a container of bikes down to Chicago, we loaded up a gigantic U-haul truck of partially assembled bikes and brought them down to the Goose Island Barrel Warehouse. This facility is pretty amazing and was the perfect venue for a new bike party. At over 143,000 square feet, the Goose Island Barrel Warehouse is the largest facility of it's kind in the US. The warehouse was full of row after row of oak barrels stacked to the ceiling that were aging beers for up to 18 months. The building smelled like a winery due to the oak barrels and it was the perfect location for giving the employees at Goose their new bikes.
We brought a few mechanics and a mini bike shop down to the warehouse so as employees picked up their new bikes we could get them fitted with helmets, lights, locks and fenders to get them on the road safe and secure. Each employee was fitted for their new bike and everyone got what they wanted. Goose Island of course provided beers for the group and we all enjoyed a night of music, pizza, beer and bikes.
A ton of work went into getting these bikes to the crew at Goose Island but it was worth every minute of it. As we loaded up our gear into a now empty U-haul and got ready to head back to Milwaukee we took one last whiff of the warehouse and already started thinking about our next custom Goose Island/Fyxation bike.