VIDEO: Airstream Beer Lodge

Posted In: Airstream, Interviews, People We Meet, RV Products, Video

It’s often said that “more than 70%” of all Airstreams ever built are still in use today. (I don’t know who has the job of running around the world counting Airstreams in use, but it must be exhausting.) While many vintage Airstreams are still being used for camping – as God and Wally intended – others have been converted into business applications. We’ve explored a few such Airstreams here in this space.

We’ve seen juice bars, barbecue restaurants, and ice cream stands all run from vintage Airstream trailers. I find this to be a remarkable endorsement of the Airstream brand and the product’s longevity and durability. What other vintage RV is regularly gutted, refurbished, polished and used as a commercial workhorse? Sure, there are lots of cool vintage RVs, but most are not transformed into commercial space. Airstream is unique in this respect.

In this video, we’re seeing yet another application for a vintage Airstream: promotional vehicle. We just randomly discovered the Leinenkugel Airstream as it was parked outside our local Alabama Walmart, a stop on its current “family road trip.” I was curious to investigate the Airstream (and beer) in question; here’s what we found out.

The Leinenkugel Airstream trailer is unique in a couple of respects. It’s a 1976 31-foot model that has been structurally modified for its mission. In the front of the unit, the original propane storage tanks have been removed, the trailer chassis has been lengthened, and a custom generator box has been installed.

I like the aluminum generator box for a couple of reasons. First, it protects the generator from abuse by the elements (not to mention prying eyes and sticky fingers). Second, the custom box just looks nice – it’s a clean way to hide the generator from sight. In our case, we wouldn’t want to sacrifice our propane tanks. However, I could foresee putting a custom generator box in the bed of our truck SEEMORE. Matthew McConaughey has a fancy custom generator box for one of his Airstreams. I guess we mere mortals can do so, too.

The interior of the Leinenkugel Airstream is mostly Wyoming cedar. The wood is warm and wonderful. Cedar exudes a pleasant aroma, and it’s just as pleasing to the eyes. The Leinenkugel renovation has created an inviting entertainment venue. This is a party Airstream, complete with a bar. There’s no kitchen or shower, so it’s not designed to be a full-time livable unit. But there’s plenty of seating, and a huge leather couch that in theory could serve as a bed.

Another interesting twist to the Leinenkugel Airstream is a second door that’s located opposite the original door. The second door was added to aid with entertainment traffic (so visitors have more than one avenue of entry and egress). I could envision some advantages to a two-door setup. Of course there would be disadvantages also, as anyone who’s ever cleaned an Airstream floor mat can surmise.

Since we’re from the South, and Leinenkugel is a historically regional brewery from Wisconsin, we were not familiar with the beer. We left the Leinenkugel Airstream with some promotional beer goodies (drink koozies and bottle openers) and inside Walmart we bought a six-pack of Sunset Wheat. Sadly, state law prevented the company from shouting “free beer!”

Leinenkugel produces more than a dozen different types of beer. The Sunset Wheat is a white beer in the Belgian tradition. I’m more of a pale ale type of guy, buy Kristy loves this sort of white beer. She had complimentary things to report about the Leinenkugel. The Sunset Wheat is touted as having “a slight creaminess, dry tart finish, and soothing citrus character.” If you are 100% confident in your manhood, you might even try it with an orange slice.

Although we just enjoyed our first “Leinie,” I’m certain that it won’t be our last. If you see the Leinenkugel Airstream on the road, be sure to stop and say hello.

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