Bradford Whicker's Beer Museum
|A sampling of what's inside the Scottsdale Beer Museum.|
Whicker, who works behind the scenes at US Airways Center, began accumulating his astounding assortment of beer cans, brew memorabilia, and ale ephemera back in 1983 while living in Nuremberg, Germany.
Bradford Whicker, however, does things a bit differently. If the brew is a rare import, microbrew, or of the exotic variety, its can will be gently rinsed out and placed in the garage of his south Scottsdale home. The 41-year-old isn't hoping to get some cash in exchange for the aluminum, mind you, but is simply adding to his growing collection, what he calls the Scottsdale Beer Museum.
It started with a can of EKU Dunkel Hefeweizen and kept on building from there.
|Bradford Whicker shows off his collection of cans, as well as other beer-related objects.|
Whicker's garage is ringed with shelves holding growlers from Arizona breweries like Four Peaks in Tempe and Gentle Ben's in Tucson, as well as mini-kegs, glassware, neon signs, tap handles, and even some homespun beer art (including a snake made from a string of bottle caps).
His collection includes such domestic swill as Coors and Mickey's, imports like Sapporo from Japan and Królewskie from Poland, and regional beers like Pittsburgh's Iron City brand. He also has plenty the same vintage beers including Hamm's, Olympia, and Lowenbrau. The tipsy time-machine goes back even further with rusty antique cone-top cans made by Frankenmuth and Grain Belt, two Midwestern brands.
Whicker says he's scoured thrift stores, antique boutiques, and other secondhand joints to help his hoarding. In fact, shops such as those are where he's found most of the items in the pride and joy of the museum: his collection of Pabst Blue Ribbon memorabilia.
|This kinda PBR shwag is likely to make hipsters everywhere drool all over their v-necks.|
Unlike most museums, Whicker doesn't allow the general public into for a visit to peruse his sudsy stash, only his nearest and dearest, as well as select visitors and even the occasional hack.
"I caught a cab home from the bar the other night and showed the Vietnamese taxi driver," he jokes.