Now for a finish, to set the birch apart from the molding , I first tapped off the surface:
A finish I like is called "french polishing" , which is several layers of 3lb shellac cut with denatured alcohol and using a figure eight pattern, it adds depth and clarity to any natural grain patterns. It's a very old style technique for finishing furniture.
To highlight the wood, I painted the molding black:
I added my brewery name from some cut-out letters obtained at a craft store, these are cheap and time saving:
French Polish by itself isn't really waterproof, but adds a great under-finish, I then coated the whole box with PolyU, spilling beer on this box is a given, the poly adds much protection to the project:
Lastly, I added my four taps and finished the box:
Got to use it this past weekend and it worked very well , light , strong and decent looking.