Meet the Brewer...EVERY DAY!
Our HQ staff are pulling pints at BrewDog Aberdeen!
Shortening the distance between us and the people who drink our beers (that's you mighty fine lookin' lot) has always been one of the most important things to us, and that works both ways. We want to respond to you and answer all the questions you have about BrewDog and brewing, but we also want to be able to ask you questions about your opinions and ideas, and see what you think about us, what we do, and how we do it.
With that in mind, we have launched our latest project in Aberdeen, the HQ staff exchange with BrewDog Aberdeen! We already bring all new bar staff up to Ellon to brew with us to give them first-hand experience of how we do what we do at HQ, and now we're flipping it around so the bars are hosting our HQ teams.
Regulars in Aberdeen may have already recognised some unfamiliar faces knocking about behind the bar. These are some of our brewers, packaging team, lab techs and ops folks, and they're all putting some time in behind the bar to get to know you and for you to probe them with questions. Here are some thoughts from some of the guys who've been swapping filling kegs for emptying them:
"The value of doing these shifts is incredibly high. It means staff at HQ can understand what it's like being on the front line helping customers engage with our beer. I had the fortune of working in one of our bars previously but, having worked at HQ for a while now, to be able to go back and speak to customers about our products is fantastic.
I also think it presents a lot of value to customers as they can see a new face behind the bar, someone they know works at HQ and gives them a direct feedback channel to the brewery and then we can bring back any suggestions they have. This creates an in-depth two-way dialogue between HQ and customers which can only allow us to make their experience with BrewDog even better and allow them to feel more connected to the company."
"It was fun to work behind the bar. All the bar staff were very patient with my rubbish pouring, and helpful when I was a bit lost!
It was interesting to get to talk to people about the beer, and discussing things about the beer which maybe people don't get to talk about with the regular bar staff. It was also interesting to learn to talk about the beer in a way to engage with customers. At HQ we tend to be pretty hardcore with our beer geek terminology, so I had to dial that back a bit and adapt how I talk about beer to suit the folks enjoying beers in the bar. Some of the customers definitely wanted that level of beer lingo though, which was cool! It was interesting to learn how to turn my critical eye to also pick out flavours which perhaps other people hadn't noticed before, and then being able to talk about where they come from.
It was also good to get a bit of a change of scenery, and just chat with people in the bar. It's always great when someone enjoys the beer that you put so much of yourself into perfecting, and it makes all the effort worthwhile when people enjoy it."
"I had a great time on Tuesday in the bar! It was really nice working with the guys down there. They all have great beer knowledge, and definitely taught me a thing or two. It was sweet putting parts of my Cicerone Certified Beer Server into practice as well.
One thing I really liked was talking to the regulars and the customers. People are passionate about Brewdog! Up at HQ we rarely get to see the fruits of our labour being enjoyed, except by ourselves, obviously, so watching people sitting down, trying new beers or old favourites was a treat! It makes all that hard work seem that little more worthwhile."
Sara, Assistant Manager at BrewDog Aberdeen, has found it a useful experience too:
"From our side it’s definitely been a new experience. Normally we’re serving these brewery peeps and needless to say it's entertaining to watch them take up behind the bar. Everyone’s first bar shift is nerve-wracking. There’s so much more to it than just pouring a pint and taking money so it’s great for the HQ staff to see behind-the-scenes of bar work.
It is of course intensely valuable as bars are the front-line to our revolution. Customers get to speak with the new bar staff about each individual aspect of the process. From brewing to packaging to making sure the beer gets out to the right places, I think many of our customers have found it surprising to see how much detail is involved.
As for the HQ staff, I love that they’re getting to see their efforts rewarded by the smile on people’s faces as they try something new, or are just drinking an old favourite. Talking to somebody about your work may not seem like the most intriguing past time but people who work in craft beer do it because they love it. Talking about work (read: awesome craft beer) is a bonus. Even if it is terrifying watching somebody approach an open hatch (BE AWARE OF THE HOLE IN THE FLOOR!!)"
You can meet and greet some of our temporary faces between 2pm and 10pm on selected weekdays, alongside our usual pro Aberdeen bar team showing them the ropes behind the bar.
What questions would you pose to our HQ staff?