Annual Free Retro Bottle Opener from Steam Whistle

Steam Whistle’s MAGEE CHURCHKEY Retro Opener celebrates Ontario’s craft brewing revolution. Now available in 6 packs and 12 packs

(15 June, 2015) – Steam Whistle Brewing, maker of Canada’s Premium Pilsner, is celebrating the craft beer revival across Canada with their 2015 edition in-case Retro Opener, aptly named The Magee Churchkey. This collectible opener is now available in both 6 and 12 packs of Steam Whistle Pilsner at Ontario LCBO and Beer Stores, while quantities last.

Retro openers from Steam Whistle now available

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“We reached into the past and revived a forgotten opener design from Canada’s craft brewing boom at the turn of the 20th century,” explains Cam Heaps, co-founder of Steam Whistle Brewing. “This piece of history honours brewing heritage while also celebrating today’s craft beer revolution and the returned pride for Canada’s world-class brewing.”

The inspiration behind The Magee Churchkey Retro Opener goes back over a century when Canada was home to mostly European immigrants who brought with them traditional brewing craftsmanship and an unbridled optimism for their new homeland. An abundance of beer styles and breweries sprang up across the nation while Canada built its brewing reputation around the globe.

A prominent brewery of this era was owned by Charles Magee, and it was a “churchkey”-style opener issued by this brewery, found by Steam Whistle co-founder Greg from a beer memorabilia collector, that inspired the 2015 Retro Opener design. [A “churchkey” referred to the original bottle openers which resembled the large, old-fashion keys used by monks to open the church, and keep their precious brew safe.] Magee’s brewery marked a special place in Canada’s brewing history, as after this, Magee’s grandson, E.P. Taylor inherited the brewery and changed the national brewing landscape. E.P. Taylor – one of Canada’s renowned business tycoons – went on to acquire 30 more breweries, sparking a massive consolidation of the beer industry that saw the number of breweries in Canada shrink from over 150 to only 5 in the 1950’s. Economies of Scale, industrial efficiency and automation pushed authentic methods aside, and fewer, more homogeneous styles of beer were offered for sale across Canada.

Fast forward to today with over 150 operating breweries in Ontario offering hundreds of original styles, Steam Whistle is proud to be part of this century’s craft beer revolution and a return to time-honoured craftsmanship and tradition.

Steam Whistle’s Opener Collection

“For over a decade, we have marked the onset of summer by putting complimentary retro-style bottle openers inside cartons of Steam Whistle Pilsner to get you one step closer to enjoying our refreshing beer,” explains Greg Taylor, co-founder of Steam Whistle Brewing. “The Magee Churchkey opener represents our values of quality, tradition, integrity and loyalty, and is our way of celebrating this craft beer resurgence and to say thank you.”

The brewery packages its Premium Pilsner in non-twist bottles because of the superior seal that the traditional crimped bottle cap provides. While this non-twist bottle helps keep Steam Whistle Pilsner tasting brewery-fresh, it might add some inconvenience to drinkers who have to locate an opener to get at their favourite brew. To answer this need, Steam Whistle launched the free retro opener feature back in 2005 and has continued to release a new design each year. Learn more at

About Steam Whistle

Steam Whistle, an independent brewery housed in Toronto’s historic John St. Roundhouse, has a passion for making just one beer of exceptional quality that Canadians can be proud of. A 2012 Gold Medal winner at the Canadian Brewing Awards and four-time winner at the Ontario Brewing Awards including the 2015 Gold winner in its category, their refreshing Pilsner is crafted with traditional European brewing methods and only four, natural (GMO-free) ingredients under the watchful eye of their Czech Master Brewer.  Offering daily tours, Steam Whistle Pilsner is packaged in signature green glass bottles, cans and draught, and is shipped fresh across Ontario, Manitoba, Saskatchewan, Alberta, BC, PEI, NS and NL to Beer and Liquor Stores as well as licensed bars & restaurants. Highly awarded for its premium beer, environmental practices, business success and community support, Steam Whistle has earned titles for being one of Canada’s Best Managed Companies (2014) for six years running and one of Canada’s Clean 50 Companies (2012). Thanks to their commitment to “Do one thing really, really well” Steam Whistle Pilsner is now one of the top selling craft beer brands in Canada. To learn more about what they do really, really well visit Become their fan on Facebook Twitter   Instagram

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