Tuesday Focus Group: Pint vs Schooner
We petitioned, we wrote letters, we met with weights and measures & HMRC, oh and we campaigned with a dwarf outside the houses of parliament for a whole week. And we changed the law! We forced the coalition government to shake the dust from 300-year-old measures laws, tearing up archaic licensing rules as the 2/3 pint measure was duly legalised.
With the 2/3 pint 'schooner' glasses now available in all BrewDog bars, we wanted to get your feedback on what you think is the perfect serving size for your favourite craft beers.
In our bars we normally offer everything below 4.9% in pint glasses - this is usually our 4.1% Trashy Blonde and 2.8% Blitz with everything over 7.6% usually available in a stemmed half pint glass. Beers between 5% and 7.6% are offered in a choice of pint glass or 2/3 pint glass.
In our Scottish Bars (Glasgow, Edinburgh and Aberdeen) a pint of Punk IPA costs £3.70 and a 2/3 pint costs £2.50. They cost around 20p more at BrewDog Camden due to the higher rents in London.
Punk Pint v Punk Schooner: 2/3 pint on the left and pint on the right in BrewDog Aberdeen.
This is where we want your feedback. What is the ideal size for a mid strength craft beer such as 5am Saint or Punk IPA? Would you prefer to enjoy it in a pint or 2/3 pint?
Are we going to see the death of the pint glass?
- Being an Aussie, I see no problem with beer served in Schooners, nor do I see a problem with calling them Schooners. Like many other people have said, I love tasting lots of different beers in a session and much prefer the size of a schooner rather than a pint. RichardHFish16.02.2012
- I dont mind about 2/3 pints, as long as you can get the beers in 1/3 and 1/2 pints as well Cyburn15.02.2012
- Maybe a better title for you would be...Executive of Level Headed responses to Ridiculous (in your opinion)
- If you think countering ridiculous comments with a more level headed response is "Propaganda" and worthy of a job, I can only hope James agrees! Steve Armstrong15.02.2012
- Steve... you work for brewdog ? If not why not.....You would make a great Executive of Propaganda.... hellboy15.02.2012
- Or Heineken using the change in the law that applies to any bar... Steve Armstrong15.02.2012
Brewdog copying Heineken! Craft!xxx15.02.2012
- I'm a pint man (proper pints) but the 2/3rds would be good as long as the prices were scaled properly and the pints are still available. Skippy15.02.2012
- I always hated pints. You'd have to drink them fast if you want the bottoms still be cold and awesome.
2/3rds for the win.Josh15.02.2012
- Tiger, Cobra,San Miguel et al are also sold in pints in bars, bringing us back on track. Should BrewDog stop serving beer in pints because "lesser" beers are served this way?
No, the choice should be left to the customer, just as you are free to not buy the "lesser" beers in the supermarket.Steve Armstrong15.02.2012
- 500ml bottles would be great.The pissy little 330ml bottles for high alcohol beers. As for the 660ml bottles Tiger, Cobra,San Miguel and all the other pisswaters are sold this size. GBH15.02.2012
- I'm perfectly fine, I just find it pretty funny that someone would tell a company to change their packaging method to match other brewers, with the justification being so prices can be compared. If Tesco put the cost per volume breakdown on the shelves, BOOM, problem solved!
It is also especially funny considering James mentioned 660ml Punk IPA being on the cards on Twitter. I'd rather have 660mls over 500mls.Steve Armstrong15.02.2012
- More to the point ....JAMES what do you think about selling brewbog in 500ml bottles? xxxX15.02.2012
- Steve.....are you ok mate ? What do you think about brewdog in 500ml bottles ? micoo15.02.2012
- Would you shout at Kellogs to package their cereals in the same size box as Weetabix, or would you ask Tesco to put the cost per volume measure on the shelves again? Steve Armstrong15.02.2012
- Steve Armstrong
the £ per volume label thingy for brewdog beers has strangely been omitted at my local tesco.xxxX15.02.2012
- I'm still struggling to see how campaigning several years after the legislation was tabled was "BrewDog changing the law". Pushing at an open door is hardly a laudable trait.
"However, we have the same glassware cost, same pouring cost, same staff time and much less cash margin and revenue."
Glassware, fair enough, but how does pouring 2/3 of a pint take as much time as pouring a pint? Does the flowrate from your taps magically reduce when a smaller glass is held under them?Jonas15.02.2012
- Why not use the £ per volume breakdown that is on every supermarket price ticket? Steve Armstrong15.02.2012
- While your farting about with pub measures. How about putting your brews in proper 500ml bottles, like most other breweries.We can then compare prices accurately at the supermarket. xxxX15.02.2012
- We can't have beer serving measures the same as the Aussies though, seeing as we have a Government that dictates the measures in which beer can be served as a law. Until the draconian, stuffy laws are changed, we are stuck with what we have. The 2/3 pint measure is a bit of a revelation, and it is a welcome halfway house between a pint and a half in my mind.
Maybe now is a good time to push the three thirds paddles as a "get yourself a pint in a different form" angle?Steve Armstrong15.02.2012
- I'm a pint man myself, i've never been a fan a halves (although i do enjoy that holding a half glass makes me feel like a giant)
However i like the idea of 2/3 glasses as they will be quite good when i drag my girlfriend to Brewdog Newcastle (once it opens).
As long as you get a choice i dont see the problemPeleC15.02.2012
- You're a funny mob. We're a craft beer bar in Melbourne & for years have been giving folk the choice of pony, glass, pot or schooner (quarter pint, third, half, 3/4) but no pint. For us & our customers it's about tasting a number of quality beers rather than vast quantities of one. With a tasting paddle you still have your much needed pint on the way home but taste 4 ponies of different beers. Most opt for a pot, the vessel of choice in Melbourne, or a schooner (3/4 Australian standard not 2/3). Who'd have thought Aussies (well, Melbournians) would be the beer drinking sophisticates. Is it too much to say "real men drink ponies"? AtticusFinchBar15.02.2012
- As long as I can still order a pint Id be happy to order a 2/3 pint, give me a chance to order more beers and the for £2.50 nice round number easier to work out how much a round is with my mates. I say 2/3 pint as i dont like the word schooner think brewdog should name it something else. id hate to walk in to the bar and ask for a schooner and asking for a 2/3's doesn't sound right either. Mikeystrac14.02.2012
- Liked the 2/3rd pint option a lot on recent visit to Brewdog Edinburgh. Keep it up! phanson14.02.2012
- Keep offering a range of glass sizes, works for me nxb14.02.2012
- I prefer the smaller measures, I find it allows me to try a wider range of beers in a visit. The 2/3 glass is ideal for this.
But if someone wants a pint they should be able to get onewmurphy14.02.2012
- Perhaps my response was a little bit strong there :)
TBH brewdog bar could serve me beer in a thimble and I'd probably still goBenH14.02.2012
We do offer customers a choice and of course we will continue to do so.
However, as part of the discussion I am also entitled to state my own views on the debate in terms of which glass size I usually drink from.
- It would appear that the people have spoken and a choice is what they're after. What do you care more about, your customers opinion or your own? Do you want to make and sell beer, or just make it?
'The customer is always right'*
*except when James Watt is heading up the companyBenH14.02.2012
- For what it is worth, I am not a huge fans of conventional pint glasses. For me these are a slightly unflattering way to show off an awesome craft beer with the focus more on quantity and effect rather than quality and expereince. There are some instances where a pint of a quaffable, low abv flavoursome session beer hits the spot, but for the most part we prefer our craft ales in smaller measures.
- I think for bars such as the Brewdog ones which have a large amount of choice and pints of some of the best craft beers can cost a lot, 2/3 pint measures are a brilliant idea. You get to try more without breaking the bank. BottleCapper14.02.2012
- Punk and 5am should be served in pint glasses. 2/3 is a good size for beers around 7/8 % A Kenyon14.02.2012
- The 'schooner' and other stemmed glasses feel much more civilised to hold. 'Straight' immediately put you in the 'throw it down your neck' mode; where the schooner, the Teku &c. make you contemplate and savour the beer more. Cinulph14.02.2012
- If I'm in a Brewdog bar, I'm probably going to want to try several different beers. I tend to drink half pints for this reason, so a 2/3 pint option would be great for the less-potent brews.
If I'm just popping in for a Punk, however, it would be nice to have the option of a pint.Andrew Molyneux14.02.2012
- I have been drinking less pints anyway, tend to go for the half pint. I have tried the two third and works fine for the mid strength brews. I like the option to select the size you want. With some of the higher strength beers I find the one third a good size where the half pint would be too much. David Armstrong14.02.2012
- Grrr, wish people wouldn't call it a "schooner" - it's just confusing :(
In most of Australia a schooner is 425ml - 2/3 pint is ~379ml. (In South Australia a schooner is 285ml apparently... they're just odd.)
I do think the 2/3 measure is a good thing though!
- It's always been said the beer get's served so stupidly cold in the bars so you can experience the differences as the temperature changes as you drink down the glass. Surely this will be diminished with less glass? Tony Kiernan14.02.2012
- must admit, since the Schooner arrived I've not really bought pints, but its all relative to what the beer is. 2/3 of Tokyo would be utter madness...
- Tend to agree with you guys on this. Most 7-8% beers & higher are already either in 8oz or 10oz pours here in the NYC area (and most states, I expect), but when possible, I ask for a 1/2 pour 10oz glass.
I prefer to enjoy tasting multiple different beers, and rarely get the same beer in a session. Flites just aren't enough to enjoy the taste of a good brew, and a 4-5oz shot glass doesn't present most beers properly. (I'd love to see beer flite mini-sized proper glassware!)
For me, pint glasses (US 16oz or Imperial 20oz) are fine for my run-of-the-mill dive bar or sports bar, where you're unlikely to find a tap list of the better quality craft beers. Pint glasses are fine for the more commonly found IPA, Brown Ales & Lagers.
For me, it's less about ABV, and more about lower fluid volume, so I can enjoy exploring more fully flavored beers in a session. Even if they're low ABV.Craft Beers & Brews14.02.2012
- Just on the finances, we actually make less money by selling 2/3rd than pints.
Per ml, the 2/3 pint works out more expensive by 3p. However, we have the same glassware cost, same pouring cost, same staff time and much less cash margin and revenue.
So overall we are better financially to sell pints. But it is not about that, it is about providing an awesome experience for the customer.James, BrewDog14.02.2012
- If I'm remembering correctly the 2/3 glasses are lined so you always get full measure if not a wee slurp more. If anything these glasses will be costing them money as you get what you pay for and not slightly under a pint which is usually the case with pint glasses. Ian Prise14.02.2012
- The price difference is 3 pence. You'd think people would much rather pay 3 pence more than end up with a pocket of smush? The pocket full of change is the only drawback of Equity Punk discount. Steve Armstrong14.02.2012
- Choice. That's what craft beer, real ale or whatever it is that gets you excited should be all about. Offer all three and phase one out if the demand drops as a result.
On quantities, my former home of Dusseldorf has the right idea by serving small quantities (200-250ml) but replenishing efficiently, ensuring the beer looks, smells and tastes as fresh as possible.
Personally I drink halves in craft beer bars but come the summer a larger serving of Blitz or Punk might be required.Ben_brg14.02.2012
- Come on folks, £2.50 is just a nice round number. They're not trying to make more money at all. They can charge £2.46 and start cutting up pennies if you'd like?! But you'd all end up with wallets bursting with coins.
- Offer the punter all the sizes and let them choose, but don't overcharge on the smaller sizes - same price per unit volume. The 2/3 is a good size to offer, as is the 1/3, but it's not going to spell the end of the pint by any stretch of the imagination. GC14.02.2012
- I think the choice is good. Especially when introducing new people to craft beer. A pint might be too intimidating, a half might look too 'girly' so 2/3 is kind of the middle ground.
As BenH said I also had a Simcoe and a Libertine porter last week. The 2/3 was a perfect size for these. Where as if I have any of the core range Punk, 5am etc I will always prefer those in a pint.
It also depends on circumstances, I was in Australia a couple of months back and the "schooner" is the standard measure over there. I struggled to find a bar that sold pints.
At first I thought that this was because the Australians where whimps and could handle a pint but someone explained to me that because it's so hot, when your sat outside with a beer it warms up really quickly, if your not paying attention you'll have a warm pint of beer in no time. The schooner allows them to still drink a decent amount of beer, yet still keep it cold as you drink it quicker than you would a pint.
As long as the 2/3 are priced equally to buying a pint then I have no issue. If you start charing more for two thirds then I'll just stick to halves or pints. You shouldn't be charging more for less volume.
- For most Brewdog beers I prefer a half myself. The only problem I've had is with staff charging for 2/3 when I only order my half. Gary14.02.2012
- I can no longer drink huge amounts of alcohol, so I would rather have more choice in smaller glasses rather than being stuck with fewer choice in larger glasses.
Besides, if it ever gets hot in the UK a pint warms up more quickly.Charles May14.02.2012
- Surely the perfect size is what the customer wants to drink it in? Why not just have all sizes on offer and let the punter decide? Rick Ogden14.02.2012
- I like to enjoy the flavour of Punk developing as it warms up a bit as you drink it - and a pint glass is best for this.
That said, if I was popping in for lunch I'd prefer 2/3 of a pint.Tim14.02.2012
- Keep the pint of punk! It' alliteratively the perfect measure, and totally the right size! Todd_philips14.02.2012
- I'm all for more customer choice. I've drank 1/3 pints, 1/2 pints, 3/4 pints and 1/1 pints. (almost) Every time it was MY choice. It feels good to be able to control what goes into your body. dogbomb14.02.2012
- 2/3 pints is a great way to get free attention for the business. Well done. However, if you want me to actually use the new size you'll have to do better than "we think it's the perfect size". Why? It seems to mean more trips to the bar and the ability to charge more per volume. The former is a pain and the latter is a sly way of taking more money from us, which reflects badly on Brewdog.
I'm an investor, so I have to support this nonsense, but as you can tell this puts me at odds with my beer philosophy of "if it works then don't fix it" and "everyone deserves a good affordable beer".redpola14.02.2012
- 2/3s are awesome. I pretty much just drink halves in the bar now anyway, so the extra "bitty" is good for some beers. The 2/3 glasses look cool as hell also! Steve Armstrong14.02.2012
- As long as the price is representative it makes no odds to me mr j14.02.2012
- I was drinking 5am saint in 2/3rd measures only a couple of weeks ago, for me it's a much better size. Matt C14.02.2012
- You make 5p more a pint by selling 2/3 which is good for business. I find that the smaller the glass the quicker I drink as in if I have a half I'll drink it in 5 mins where as if I have a pint I might take 20 mins. I'm getting used to drinking 2/3 from having bottles. But I would always choose a pint even as high as tokyo*, hardcore I'd certainly buy in pints, I did have a bit of an argument in a bar where they would only give me it in a half. HystrixCristata14.02.2012
- I think keeping the choice for the mid strength beers is the best way. If I was popping in for a quick punk on the way back from work I would be most displeased if I could only get it in a 2/3rd glass. Finn14.02.2012
- I drink all beer by 1 liter. If it's not drinkable bei maß, it's hardly drinkable at all.
Oh, these youngsters. They'll do anything just to stay sober. Even drink beer by teaspoons.zgoda14.02.2012
- I had 2/3 of simcoe and of libertine last week, it was the ideal size. Reckon I'd prefer a pint for punk or 5am though. I suppose a choice is what I'd be after BenH14.02.2012
- I'm all for the choice to drink out of any size glass, but some of us like drinking pints of Hardcore IPA. Bigfoot14.02.2012
- I think there's a time and a place for both, depends on whetehr you're popping in for a quick one or want to try a few in an evening Stephanos14.02.2012
- I've got no problem with 2/3 measures, it's just the name.
Asking someone if they fancy a "schooner" or a "2/3" after work just doesn't have the same ring to it as going for a pint.
- I live in New Zealand so I'd happy drink BrewDog out of an old boot if I could get it on tap! Kevin14.02.2012
- I'd be heartbroken if 5am went schooner-only (although the schooner is a GRATE idea!) for the sake of 0.1%. Alan Fudge14.02.2012