BREWDOG BARS IN 2018
Taking a look at our temples of craft beer
A couple of weeks ago we ran down the list of our upcoming beers for 2018 and filled you all in on everything we are planning to release from our brewhouse this year. We figured the natural progression from that is to do the same for the places where much of that craft beer ends up – our amazing (and growing) network of BrewDog bars. So buckle up for the mother of all bar crawls.
And we begin with a few things we are focusing on – starting with the most important of all.
In our bars we have a single commitment – to serve amazing beer better than anyone else on the planet. In 2018 we are continuing this quest with more investment in direct-draw cellar systems as well as other unseen but vital pieces of dispense technology. So for instance, more of these self-contained systems that remove the need for long beer lines with their variable temperature and resultant knock on beer quality.
Temperature really is key to getting a great beer, so alongside direct-draw we are rolling out installations of glycol-cooled Micro Matic dispense kit as well as insulated cold boxes for beer storage and much more. Our mantra is Store Cold, Serve Fresh and 2018 is another leap in that direction. Stay tuned for more announcements as we ramp up our focus on beer freshness.
We love it when our bars are busy and a crowd of likeminded beery souls are having a great time – and our Cicerone-trained bar crews are always on hand to chat, offer advice or generally make everyone feel welcome at the bar. If it’s pretty busy though we are currently trialling a new series of tech options to help out, thanks to the new (and currently in beta) BrewDog app.
For a start, we are looking at integrating Pay at Table technology into the app so that you can settle up without having to head back to the bar one final time. This should really help out if that last train has come around sooner than expected! In 2018 we are also looking at adding Order at Table options to the app as well – stand by for further updates on how the app progresses!
BrewDog Bars in Airports
Our bars team are a travel-hardened bunch, used to life on the road looking for new sites or checking up on existing ones. Airports are a second home to them, as they are for many of you guys. For years we have wondered why airport bars can’t be done better – we’ve all passed through them on the way to our gate and been greeted with old beer, strange carpets and stale atmospheres.
So in 2018 we are going to do something about it. We have our first airport location agreed and ready to get to work at, with a second in the pipeline too. We hope more will follow after that. We love the fact that many US airports have small-scale brewery taps from local breweries for those who love craft beer – this coming year is when we give UK travellers a taste of what beer on the go should be like.
Last year we took our takeaway beer offering to another level with the appearance of more integrated BottleDogs in our bars – and this is something we are continuing with in 2018. However we took an objective look at these temples of takeout and decided bulky, closed door fridges are more of a barrier than anything. So this year we are trialling open dairy deck fridges (in DogHouse Merchant City and Castlegate at the moment).
The idea in rolling these out is to give you a much better view of the chilled beers we have on offer, with more beer at eye level. Also they have another major advantage in that they have a greater capacity than the closed fridges, so we can move to get all of our BottleDog stock - every ounce of packaged beer we sell – stored cold to keep those flavours exactly where they should be.
So, those are some of the ways in which our bars are changing next year – but what about the locations? Here’s a quick update on the BrewDog bars ongoing. This coming year is going to see 20 amazing new BrewDog locations including (but not limited to):-
- Edinburgh Lothian Road – Scotland’s capital will very soon be a two-dog town. Our latest UK Bar is scheduled to open in Edinburgh on January 26th.
- Reading – We have located and started work on a site bang in the middle of Reading town centre and are hiring staff – we will be open in late February/early March!
- Tower Hill – The month after that we are going to be opening the doors to our first UK BrewPub, located a stone’s throw from Tower Bridge on the banks of the River Thames.
- Glasgow Hopworks – In May we’ll be opening our bar near the Barrowlands in Glasgow where you can take a pilot kit for a spin and unleash that brewing creativity.
- Sweden #5 – No country has taken us to heart quite like the Swedes so we have a location earmarked for the fifth BrewDog bar in that extremely thirsty country!
- Short North Columbus – The downtown entertainment area of our adopted US home city is ready for BrewDog, and we are ready for it. BrewDog Short North opens in March.
- Franklinton Columbus – And following closely behind it in April, an epic two-storey building just over the river in the equally cool Franklinton area of Columbus.
- Paris – Our trials and tribulations in the French capital have been worthy of a work of fiction but we have another site firmed up and no more fingers left to cross. BrewDog Paris will happen.
- BrewDog Seoul – The Korean capital is a mind-melting fusion of old and new; and from May we are going to plant our flag there too. And we’re coming with a BrewPub.
- BrewDog Overworks – Finally, closer to home, in the spring we are going to give the Overworks a chance to fully shine with its own bar at our Ellon HQ. Sour to the people!
Elsewhere across our bars we are still working on other cool projects – we had an incredible twelve months for food so in 2018 we are raising our game yet further, for instance we are installing a full kitchen at DogTap Ellon for burgers and wings! Plus we are working hard to bring back many more favourite beers from our catalogue as part of #ReBrewDog. We’ll also be rocking our increased pilot kit and Tower Hill BrewPub to get even more small-batch beers out there and have several other global cities in mind for International BrewDog bars and BrewPubs.
Everyone in our bars team worked incredibly hard throughout 2017 to source great beer, keep it the right way and serve it the way it should be – and we will endeavour to get even better over the next twelve months. Let us know in the comments below your thoughts on our plans for 2018, and if you have anywhere you’d like to see us open up in, just leave us a note. You never know where it might lead…