BrewDog Team Stories [Part 2]
More tales from the team
Here's the second instalment of our back stories for some of the kickass craft beer crusaders working in our company who started off their BrewDog journey in our bars. Check out how they came to be where they are today:
Name: Neil Taylor
Then: Bar Manager at BrewDog Aberdeen
Now: Mr World
The Story: "I started off my BrewDog journey at BrewDog Aberdeen. I then got shipped down to the Big Smoke to become BrewDog Camden's Manager, levelled up to UK Area Manager and I'm now known as Mr World. It's been a pretty epic journey, and my current role is something I don't think I ever even imagined I'd be doing. I oversee the expansion of our bar division outside of the UK, ensuring that our international bars hit the peaks that we expect from our UK bars. I bring the passion, knowledge and enthusiasm that BrewDog employees bring to their jobs to new and exciting places!
Aside from the excitement of knowing that in the next few months I'll be travelling the world visiting India, Germany, Brazil and Belgium to name a few, I think my most rewarding moment at BrewDog was in the early months of the Camden bar opening when the bar was full, there was a queue of 20 folk outside, Appetite for Destruction by Guns n Roses was playing, we were serving amazing beer and I was in charge of it all. Oh and being so rock n roll I attempted to crowd surf off the Aberdeen bar and broke a table. The tank rolling in at the launch of BrewDog Camden was also pretty epic. And appearing on a live TV debate with two MSPs wasn't too bad either...!"
Back in the day: Say Hi to Neil
Name: Stephen Allerston
Then: Bar staff at BrewDog Newcastle
Now: Junior Brewer
The Story: "My BrewDog adventure started in bars where I sold craft beer to the people of Newcastle and answered many questions as I was a avid home brewer before taking my current job. I was only there 3 months before I was given the opportunity to fulfil my dream and head to Fraserburgh to join the brewing team.
My current job is to brew awesome beer at the new BrewDog brewery using our state of the art brewhouse. It is very different from Fraserburgh due to the amount we are brewing and the speed we can produce exceptionally fine beers. I also have to keep an eye on the cold block of the brewery, which involves watching tanks as they go through fermentation, removing yeast and getting it ready to be pitched into a new fermentation and cleaning empty tanks so they are ready for a new brew.
All the guys I work with are amazing and every day at the brewery we work very hard to produce the best beer possible. It's a really close knit team, and even when we're all pretty knackered after night shifts, we all keep each other going by keeping morale up with a smile and that makes it an awesome place to work."
Name: Kerry Allison
Then: Part time bar staff at BrewDog Aberdeen
Now: Captain of the Northern Fleet
The story: "When I started working at BrewDog Aberdeen, I had previous bar management experience, but my beer knowledge wasn’t up to scratch – I soon changed that!! Since this time, I have been promoted six times, to eventually end up here, as Captain of the Northern Fleet. During the last three years I have found myself doing all kinds of crazy things. I have appeared on STV and BBC News, I have worked at Beer Festivals in Catalonia, France, Norway and Sweden, and conducted a televised beer tasting from a refurbished Viking Ship.
In my latest capacty at BrewDog, I am area manager for Northern Bars. I work from as far North as Aberdeen, right down to Manchester. I oversee daily operations in six of our bars, and will soon be working on opening some ace new bars in the Northern half of the country. I help to organise events, train management teams, ensure the quality of the customer experience is at the highest possible standard, and I am a full time email ninja…
I have known from day one of my career with BrewDog that I wanted to be doing what I am doing now. I wanted to take my experience in the bar industry and apply it to a totally new, exciting and innovative company."
Back in the day: Say Hi to Kerry
Then: Bar staff at BrewDog Edinburgh
Now: Assistant Brewer
The story: "I used to be a barman in Edinburgh. I spent my days talking beer in the UK's best craft beer city, contemplating why my already short name (Dave) had been manipulated into Starky, lugging kegs about the bar and occasionally serving beer.
I was sent from the bar for a bit of brewery training not long after making this decision and after spending time there, instantly knew what the plan was, "Don't be an arse and get the fuck up North"! I emailed Bowman, did a few trial shifts and boom...I now live on the wild streets of Ellon!
I'm in a perma state of learning, I'm currently being trained up on the brewhouse which is the dream along with a million other things. I also do a considerable amount of mungin (moving) malt and hops around the place.
One thing I've learned is don't put CO2 into a hop cannon that’s full of water unless you want to make a hop ballistic missile that Kim Jong Il would have been proud of..."
Then: Full time bar staff at BrewDog Aberdeen
Now: Gaffer (Manager) at BrewDog Edinburgh
The story: "I jumped from bar staff to key holder to duty manager and the big jump to GM Edinburgh all within 9 months...pretty exciting! I've been involved with various painting projects too, including the brewery office block bit, the shark and the tiger on the tanks, indoor and outdoor murals at Shoreditch, the toilets at Aberdeen and various pieces since starting in Edinburgh! Art, design and anything hands on/creative is what I really enjoy. With BrewDog I've been given some awesome projects to work on with a ton of creative freedom.
My initial application at BrewDog was for a marketing role. I didn't have any experience in the field but I have a background in graphic design and thought that I had some cool ideas for the company. This role didn't happen but I was sorted out with a wee job at the Aberdeen bar. I had been working in bars and nightclubs with no passion so joining the team in Aberdeen was a fantastic change of scene! From there it has just been a roller coaster and I'm excited for whatever happens next.
The Shoreditch painting trip with my brother and Calvin was a definite highlight of my job at BrewDog so far. It was also a lot of fun getting weird (not like that...) in the Aberdeen toilet hall with John. The fumes got to us a bit and made us do one of my favourite and scariest murals I've ever done. '