2bar Spirits | Designing Whiskey Labels

2bar Distillery: Excellence in Branding

Companies love to talk about their brand but few take it as literally as Nathan Kaiser of 2bar Spirits.


Kaiser’s family started ranching cattle over one hundred years ago as the 2bar Ranch in Yokum, Texas, and his grandfather still works there every day. Tall tales profess that Kaiser’s progenitors brewed moonshine during prohibition and this rebellious spirit lives on in this deeply authentic Seattle distillery.


2bar Spirits opened their business with a craft take on moonshine.


True moonshine (we’re talking illegal bathtub swill) has a little corn for flavor but the booze is mostly sugar, which turns to alcohol quickly and cheaply but lends no taste.


2bar’s moonshine is distilled from pure corn with no other additives. Kaiser, seeking to distinguish 2bar on quality, not price, decided on this uncompromising method long before opening shop. “I like the flavor profile better,” says Kaiser, “it tastes a lot better but it takes a lot longer.”


2bar Spirits is an entirely “grain to glass distillery” where all alcohol is created on-site. Many distilleries choose to purchase alcohol or other additives from large industrial sources.


The Denver Post wrote about this issue last year:


 “That local liquor from the distillery down the road might not be so local. Chances are the brown liquor comes from industrial factories in Indiana, Kentucky or Tennessee and the vodka comes from large ethanol producers.


Those factories churn out millions of gallons of hooch every year, and they feed the nation’s exploding craft distilling industry. Ever wonder how a brand-new distiller is offering 8-year-old whiskey? It is buying it.”


Kaiser’s advice? Take a look at the label. If it says “produced and bottled by,” than it’s most likely purchased. If it says “distilled by” then you’re buying the real deal.


2bar’s commitment to excellence won high praise from SIP Northwest:


“The latest release of Kaiser’s claim to fame is the Bourbon Whiskey Batch 11, his oldest (longest aged) batch yet. Aromas of butterscotch, vanilla, honey, dark candied chocolate and cocoa nibs lead to similar warm and buttery flavors, smooth and complex with a structure only oak can provide.”

Here at Trysk, we have a great time working on their labels because the nod to Kaiser’s family history gives the package a feeling of “modern rustic”.




Designer Jay Mollet worked for months to create something with truly iconic potential. It was a difficult balance to keep the history and authenticity while still creating an eye-catching that will “pop” amidst a grocery store shelf crammed with liquor bottles.


We love the art, and we love drinking 2bar. Check them out in Sodo next time you’re in town!

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