Can you read this mysteriously coded beer label?

Rick Lingle in Labels on July 05, 2016

A new line of 6 beers from Denmark’s TO ØL Brewery presents a triple mystery: What does the label’s code mean? And what movie does the line draw its inspiration from? And finally, what does the brewer’s name signify?


Do you love a mystery? So do I, which is why this label fascinates me so much because it’s so mysteriously different.

Mr. Blue is an ale made with blueberries by Denmark's TO ØL Brewery brewed and bottled at the De Proef Brouwerij, Lochriste-Hufte, Belgium. The beer is imported into the U.S. by Shelton Brothers Inc., Belchertown, MA, which has a rather interesting website of its own.

I found the beer on a recent visit to a local Binney’s Beverage Depot Store, thanks to a helpful and knowledgeable manager in the beer department, whose name is Mike.

I cut to the chase, asking Mike, “What’s new and interesting in beer?” and he took me immediately to a display that included this Mr. Blue bottle as well as an adjacent Mr. Orange.

I was captivated by the label’s cryptic code of letters and numbers.


I’d never heard of TO ØL, but my beer-enabled tour-guide informed me that the brewer “borrows” another brewery’s operations to produce its own brew. That, too, was new for me, but it makes perfect sense as a hybrid DIY contract packaging (CP) operation that has benefits for both parties beyond the typical CP arrangement.

What I learned online about TO ØL was that it produced an estimated 800,000 liters last year while earning the rating of the world’s 9th best brewery by Ratebeer Best.

Pretty impressive numbers on both counts.

I reached out to the brewer, whose press & communications manager, Louise Norup Hellener, says the 6-product line includes Mr. Blonde, Mr. Blue, Mr. Brown, Mr. Orange, Mr. Pink and Mr. White and a forthcoming Mr. Brown.

Before we go any further let’s go back to the main question: Do you know what the code means?

We offer one more clue on the next page if you need it.

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