As I’m sure, many of you that know our team, we are not ones to go about things quietly; we are proud, passionate and dedicated to bringing great American craft beers into the UK. A complete tour of the pop-up Craft Beer maze at the Truman Brewery on Brick Lane clearly demonstrates a mass market love of craft beer from the brewers to the drinkers, but only one tells their story through magic and megaphones – cue the rise of the American Craft Beer Co.
Firstly, to date this had to be one of American Craft Beer Co’s most impressive looking stands as 12 taps glistened in the slightly irritating disco spotlight that circled it’s glow from just above the stand. All the range were there, including Crazy Mountain’s Pale, IPA, Pilsner and 9% Emotional Rescue, Stevens Point’s SPA, Beyond The Pale and Spruce Tip IPA, Lonerider’s Pilsner, Pale Ale and IPA and the brand new to the UK range of Hardywood Pilsner, VIPA and Belgian White. Deep breath. I haven’t even got started on all the packaged ranges.
There are not many jobs in the world where ‘shmoozing’ drinking beer is a necessity rather than an ‘entertainment expense’ (come on, we’ve all been there) so it’s hard not to embrace the culture of the beer industry. There was one real issue that we’d never come across before, and that was the shear choice of keg’d liquid, literately on tap (pun intended). It was a truly enjoyable experience to get good beer into thirsty people – chatter, chatter, chatter.
The days were long – but they were not just bearable, but influential, especially with characters such as David Sule, Vice President of Sales at Crazy Mountain Brewery. No one can replace the passion people like these guys have for their beer – having someone from the brewery is having the story presented to you in person. Also, Hardywood’s team of Virginian *’lovers’ (honestly, that has a genuine, non-related connection to an innuendo meaning) were bright and enthusiastically primed to front their beers, we appreciated your support guys and gals.
Fast-track through the few days and there was no short of magic tricks from our very own Alan Firth – brilliantly gathering fascinated crowds who couldn’t stop starring at his various length rope (and cards). Head to our Facebook page to see one of the live shows.
The event progressively got more random as crowds gathered round the Scotland vs Wales rugby on Saturday afternoon, casted on our two screens. As ever, Saturday night peaked as ex-fireman Alan had to pause his magic trick to help a lady down from standing on the bar, whlist supervising another crowd of females who decided that pouring a perfect pint of foam (put it this way, there wasn’t much beer to note of) would make for a great photo opportunity.
Finally, came the hour (and a few more) of the megaphone. A convenient addition to the team played a big part in the night, as Chloe serenaded empty glasses with a call of “that glass is empty”, and almost like clockwork, shout-quoted the famous Die Hard line by replacing Lonerider’s Hoppy Ki Yay in the title – golden.
As the night came to a close, the ‘sobering’ (again, pun intended) packing up finished at 2pm in the morning.
Jason took photos and washed clothes.
Luke poured a great pint and looked bored at one point.
Ed spoke to a girl and laughed in exactly the same place, on a completely different day.
Mark also laughed and looked at a camera.
*The saying for the Virginia state is “Virginia is for lovers’, which promotes that Virginia is the state where if you are a lover of ‘something’, i.e. trees, history, music etc…then this is the place for you. Rather more appealing than New Hampshire’s slogan, “Live free or die’.
…and here is some of Alan’s wonderful magic:
Article written by Jason Neal