Drink in Local Stories – by Australian Brewery sales manager and craft beer sentient David Ward.
In my mind, people shouldn’t need an excuse to go to the local pub and have a beer. However, as delivery apps and cheap streaming entertainment services become more prevalent, maybe people need more of a reason.
The local pub should be a meeting place for the community; a place for birthdays, family meals, and great beer. In fact, I believe that good local beer should be the focal point of bringing people into a venue. With some people placing the number of craft breweries in Australia at around 500 and a growing number in regional areas, these local stories and products are ready-made to be onboarded into a venue.
Consumers are paying increasing heed to the heritage of coffee and wine. The quality of pub schnitzels and parmas around the country are at an all-time high. It is important that publicans don’t forget these trends also apply to beer. Just because stocking 20 taps of bland lager was ok 20 years’ ago, doesn’t mean it is now.
That is not to say that lager doesn’t have a place in pubs, in fact we make a couple of them at the brewery. Our current favourite, Seis Hermanos Lager, won best NSW beer at the Sydney Royal show in August. However, you should try and find a place for an IPA or two, a pale ale, a sour and somewhat selfishly, a big Saison.
Craft brewers have to focus on small batch beers and the best quality ingredients to cut through in a cluttered market. This, coupled with the marketing benefit of consumers supporting other local businesses, and local beers working together with venues, seems like a no brainer.
Brewers are always looking for ways to market their products, giving great opportunities for cross-pollination. Tap takeovers, brewers’ shouts and speciality collaborations are all great social content, and a great way to bring new people into your venue.
The combining of beer and food, and the concept of beer degustations, are also gaining momentum within the industry and are a great way to draw attention to your food offering. Utilising a brewer’s full range of beers and pairing it with multiple courses draws a lot of eyeballs, and is something that we are going to be expanding upon at the Australian Brewery in the near future.
Convenience is king, and as it gets easier and easier for customers to stay home, venues are going to have to work harder and harder to keep themselves full. Why not work together with local breweries that want to sell their beer on tap even more than you do?
(Article taken from this month’s PubTIC Magazine.)