Monday, 1 July 2013

BrewDog – Trolls or clueless about Sheffield?

From their coming soon page about them taking on the former Starbucks on Division Street:

The people of Sheffield have long been screaming out for a BrewDog bar and we have answered the call. We are excited to be joining a thriving community of awesome, eclectic craft beer bars in the steel city, who are all standing up to the mass marketed industrial beers that dominate the rest of the city.

This has got to be either trolling on a massive scale in order to drive eyeballs to that page, like the Daily Mail but fro brewers, in which case I apologise for helping them. Or it is an indication that they know little about the beer scene in Sheffield. Last time the Sheffield and District branch of Camra did a beer survey (this year’s will be on the 13th of July) in a sample of 138 pubs they found Sheffield had 309 Distinct Beers from 140 breweries at an average price per pint of £2.70 hardly a haven for mass “mass marketed industrial beers”. Even if you could only get beers that meet the LocAle criteria Sheffield would still be a mighty fine place to drink beer. But as it is, add in the rest of the real ales and all the keg and bottled beer from all over the world and some hugely knowledgeable publicans and bar staff and this is about the best place I’ve ever been for drinking beer.

In any case this is another blast of blustery bullshit in the phoney war between cask and keg. Just drink the good stuff, ignore the bad stuff and stop trying too hard to win a battle that doesn’t need to exist, you just look silly trying.

EDIT: Having thought a bit more about this, with a turnover over £10 million, a marketing budget north of £200k and $1,000,000 of supermarket sales they are the mass market brewery opening another pub in their chain in Sheffield. We'll welcome them in, but they are definitely not saving us from anything.

6 comments:

grok-mctanys said...

"The people of Sheffield have long been screaming out for a BrewDog bar and we have answered the call."
That's marketing hyperbole, yes, but not totally unbelievable.

"We are excited to be joining a thriving community of awesome, eclectic craft beer bars in the steel city,"
Maybe I'm just naïve when it comes to advertising, but to me that sounds like them acknowledging the breadth of independent beer in the city, and wanting to be a part of that.

"who are all standing up to the mass marketed industrial beers that dominate the rest of the city."
You don't think the good pubs with real ale are in strong competition with the big chain pubs that only serve Carling, Fosters, Stella, and the like? That those industrial beers don't dominate the bars which don't sell Wood Street Best and the like?

"they are the mass market brewery opening another pub in their chain in Sheffield."
How small, niche, thrifty and exlusive would they have to be for you to embrace them fully, you beer hipster? ;-)

Tony Kennick said...

@Grok
You don't go drinking in the city centre much these days do you?
I don't have exact figures to hand but excluding nightclubs[1] I think pubs and bars that serve at least one small/local brewery real ale or specialist craft keg beer in the city centre outnumber those that don't. Lots of those places have much more then one of each and good collections of bottles as well.
If they are truly on a mission to save drinkers from industrial product they should open at centertainment or medowhall or somewhere else away from the city centre.

[1]Who needs them, when you can drink local real ale in the Harley until 4am?

grok-mctanys said...

"You don't go drinking in the city centre much these days do you?"

Thankfully, no. :-)

I occasionally travel through the city centre during drinking hours, and have decided it is a place best left for those who fit in there.

(Not that I fit in particularly well to many other places, but some feel less exclusive towards outsiders than others.)

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