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Specially Drawn Beer: Proclamation brew honors RI ComicCon 2022

What beer goes best with the comics, entertainment, and art extravaganza that makes up Rhode Island Comic Con (RICC)? For the past four years, Proclamation Ale Company has answered the call of nerds across New England with their exclusive releases – and they’re thrilled to do it again for RICC’s 10th anniversary!

Every year, when Proclamation starts the process of developing the official beer of RICC, Lori Witham, President and Creative Director of Proclamation Ale Company, makes a point to tie the theme of the custom brew to the event’s featured celebrities. Last year’s exclusive brew, the I Assure You; We’re Open IPA, was created with a nod to the 1994 movie Clerks. In 2022, Proclamation is all about Cobra Kai, the acclaimed streaming series that continued the story of Ralph Macchio and William Zabka’s characters from the 1984 classic film The Karate Kid. The RI community is already abuzz over their attendance as featured guests at RICC, along with celebrated actress Elisabeth Shue.

But while Cobra Kai has garnered acclaim and awards, the only beer that the actual show seems to know about is Coors Banquet, with bottles making regular appearances, usually sharing scenes with Zapka’s Johnny. That’s all about to change thanks to Lori, a self-described big fan of the series. “Johnny (William Zabka) is the hero in this series,” she explains. “He’s pulled through so much and become such a great character. So, for this year’s beer, I decided to tie in a scene in Season Four when Johnny pulls out a cassette tape mix labeled Johnny’s Badass Mixtape Four for his Rocky-inspired workout montage.”

Comic Con Playlist is a 6.5% APV IPA that’s perfect for sipping while still maintaining the wits to walk around the convention. While this beer will be primarily sold during RICC in November (you’ll find it in cans at all the bars!), the brewery also plans to do a smaller release at its Warwick location and some local distribution until the batch is sold out. 

One interesting fact about this exclusive release is the retro artwork – done by Lori herself! “I’ve done all of Proclamation’s label art since we started in 2007,” she shares. “It’s funny, I went to Providence College for their swim team, but I always had an interest in art. At first, I went into marketing, thinking I would do something in advertising, but I ended up in the art department, where I eventually taught myself design.” Now Lori serves as Proclamation’s lead graphic designer, along with her self-described roles as “social media collaborator, brewery aesthetic guide, un-educated photographer, very part-time production hand, and the one employee with no facial hair.”

Along with their award-winning beers, Proclamation is known for their robust community involvement, having worked with several local and national organizations to provide monetary or food donations. So, how did Proclamation come to partner with Rhode Island Comic Con four years ago?  “Altered Reality (RICC showrunners) made the connection,” Lori says. “Bryan Colton [RICC food and beverage consultant] was a big fan of Proc, and we were big fans of ‘Stranger Things’ and ‘Lost’ and all sorts of other things in the comic world. We loved the idea of being a part of a big local event and reaching new customers through these exclusive beers.”

“Doing this collaboration is such a fun break from our everyday operations, a chance to get to play with new themes,” Lori explains at the end of our call. “We’ve really enjoyed working with the team and look forward to November!”

Not attending Comic Con?! You can still get a hold of Comic Con Playlist at Proclamation’stheir location! Grab a beer and say cheers to Lori and the crew at 298 Kilvert Street in Warwick. Or visit their social media handles (@proclaimationale on Facebook, Twitter, and Instagram) for updates on what’s on tap and what’s coming up next!

RICC runs Nov 4 – 6, 2022, at the Amica Mutual Pavilion (where the Dunk usedabe) and RI Convention Center. ‘The Biggest Show in the Smallest State’ hosts three days of panel programming, including Q&As with celebrities and guest artists; tickets are now on sale, and more information can be found on their website, ricomiccom.com

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