It's not uncommon for brewers to honor their favorite athletes in liquid tributes. For Brett Favre's induction to the Packers Hall of Fame this fall, Wisconsin's Badger State Brewing created an IPA called Legendary Pass with Cajun spices and Warrior hops. And over the summer, Duquesne Brewing in Pennsylvania made a lager to honor Joe Paterno's legacy at Penn State.
Now Peyton Manning is getting his own beer, Tow Yard Brewing's Oatmaha, named after the quarterback's affinity for shouting "Omaha" before a snap. It's impressive that Manning is receiving the sudsy honor while still in uniform, but what's even more striking is that the ale is a collaboration between brewers in Denver and Indianapolis.
The idea for Oatmaha was hatched at Colorado's Factotum Brewing. Siblings and owners Laura and Christopher Bruns originally hail from Indiana and wanted to partner with an Indianapolis brewer to make the beer. Their friends at Tow Yard were game, and the two breweries wrote up an oatmeal pale ale recipe that honored Manning, as well as both towns. The oats recognize that both the cities have teams named for horses — oats are feed, after all. Then Indiana corn is added with the barley, and Colorado sage brings a spicy touch to the finish.
"We brewed it to say thanks for all he's done to make our cities' respective teams something to be excited about," says Tow Yard head brewer Tony Fleming. "The tagline for the beer is actually, 'tastes like a touchdown in your mouth.' "
Tow Yard brewed Oatmaha first, and currently has it on tap at the brewery and for sale by the six-pack. Factotum recently sent its batch to the fermenters, though it won't be ready for the Broncos' second-round playoff game against the Steelers. The optimistic Bruns siblings point out, however, that the easy-drinking pale ale should be tapped in time for the Super Bowl.