Where's the beerfest brewery representative?

Discussion in 'Beer Talk' started by 19etz55, Feb 10, 2013.

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  1. 19etz55

    19etz55 Disciple (323) Aug 12, 2007 New Jersey

    Question I have is should a brewery at a beerfest have one of their employees at their booth? I was at the Asbury Park BF recently where at least two breweries had people pouring samples that seemed to know nothing about the breweries beers. One guy just said I don't work for the brewery but was just there to pour. A woman at another booth asked if I wanted a 4% or 6% sample. I guess she was talking about the ABV? I'm sure it's hard to send a rep to every beer event but at least hire someone who knows a little about beer. Appreciate your thoughts.
  2. pjeagles

    pjeagles Initiate (164) May 29, 2005 New Mexico
    Beer Trader

    Just wait till you go to GABF. I've had volunteer pourers who were so drunk they could barely get my 1 oz. pour in my glass.
  3. Luv2Brew422

    Luv2Brew422 Initiate (46) Jan 7, 2012 California
    Beer Trader

    I absolutely think that breweries should be represented by brewery employees (especially the brewers themselves) and not by volunteers. I always ask questions about specific beers that they are pouring and even some that they are not pouring. I hate when there is someone who knows nothing about beer behind the tap. This is the one of the reasons that the Firestone Walker Invitational was such a GREAT beer festival. Take note brewfest planners and breweries, bring your brewers!
    Sludgeman, FosterJM and 19etz55 like this.
  4. CharlatanSin

    CharlatanSin Zealot (513) May 28, 2009 Connecticut
    Beer Trader

    I remember a couple of years ago Bell's had an IPA on that I'd never heard of. I asked the pourer for some info, and got the response that "it's beer...from Michigan!"
  5. Seanvino

    Seanvino Aspirant (248) Jan 5, 2009 California

    I have volunteer poured at a festival a couple of times. Both times I was assigned to small breweries that only sent one person. One was represented by the brewer and one by one of the principals of the brewery. Both of them spent the first part of my 2 hour shift with me to educate me on what they had brought and then were off to sample and/or eat for the rest of my shift returning when my shift was over. The brewer was kind enough to let me borrow a brewery pass to get into the brewers tent to sample what was being shared with other brewers/breweries:sunglasses:
    mecummins and Duff27 like this.
  6. FosterJM

    FosterJM Poo-Bah (2,719) Nov 16, 2009 California
    Beer Trader

    Damn, now I have to go!!!

  7. cbeer88

    cbeer88 Crusader (719) Sep 5, 2007 Massachusetts

    IMO, the ideal is that volunteers pour the beer but the representatives are there to answer questions. This keeps the lines moving and gives attendees ample chance to talk to the brewery without making everybody behind them wait.
    guajolote, JrGtr and CharlatanSin like this.
  8. willbm3

    willbm3 Initiate (0) Feb 19, 2010 Massachusetts

    To not have a rep there seems like a poor business decision on the part of the brewery. On a semi-related note, I don't like when a brewery has 5 or 6 beers at a fest that have some name that doesn't indicate what they are. Then you have to ask for a description of each, the lines move slow, etc. I appreciate when there is clear signage indicating the name, the style, and a description so I can make my decision while in line
  9. Sludgeman

    Sludgeman Meyvn (1,481) Aug 17, 2012 District of Columbia
    Beer Trader

    Just like many companies at a trade show each brewer should bring at least one hot chick to explain its beer!
  10. mkorpal

    mkorpal Aspirant (214) Oct 28, 2007 Colorado

    If the brewers spent all of their time working brewfests, who would brew the beer?
  11. stabbingcontest

    stabbingcontest Initiate (0) Aug 26, 2010 Massachusetts

    edited for misread quote.

    if a brewer was sent to every fest a brewery attends (there are a lot of fests out there...) that is a shift that person is not on site performing the primary function they are employed for. and then are they going to be paid their brewer pay rate to stand around and pour beer and schmooze the crowd? if not, good luck getting anyone to happily go work a fest.

    but i agree about reps. one should absolutely be there. i do like getting to run in to brewers at fests, but it is not always possible to have them there.
  12. wisconsinbeer1

    wisconsinbeer1 Aspirant (211) Nov 11, 2004 Wisconsin
    Beer Trader

    Sometimes breweries arent even aware their beer is being poured at beer fests. Not much they can do about that. Its unrealistic to expect someone from the brewery to be there every time their beer is being poured.
    BoneyardBrewer and jesskidden like this.
  13. COBeerBuff

    COBeerBuff Disciple (364) Jan 4, 2009 Kansas
    Beer Trader

    ^This. In an ideal world, all brewers would have the time to not only brew amazing beer, but also spend time pouring it at festivals and speaking with the drinkers of their beer. Unfortunately, many beer fests today are put on by distributors as opposed to individual groups that reach out specifically to each brewery. These distributor-originated fests often have volunteers that pour half the time, so they can get slobbery drunk the remainder.
  14. jesskidden

    jesskidden Meyvn (1,303) Aug 10, 2005 New Jersey

    Pretty obvious from the line-up at the Asbury Park Beer Fest website's BREWS page that all those brands are distributed locally by Shore Point, and the event itself is organized by a hard rock radio station, I wouldn't have expected much brewery participation or even much "beer knowledge" to begin with.
  15. cavedave

    cavedave Poo-Bah (2,284) Mar 12, 2009 New York
    Beer Trader

    I agree with OP. In fact, I think breweries should hire an entire staff of folks to attend all the events at which their beers are poured. True, this would slow the already incredibly slow lines down even more while these hired reps field questions, and, true, this would probably double the cost of beer to the consumer, but I am willing to put up with these things, and I am sure I speak for everyone else in this regard.
    beertunes likes this.
  16. 19etz55

    19etz55 Disciple (323) Aug 12, 2007 New Jersey

    Good point. That would be ideal.
  17. 19etz55

    19etz55 Disciple (323) Aug 12, 2007 New Jersey

    I agree it is tough. But at least have someone there with a little knowledge?
  18. eagles7251

    eagles7251 Initiate (183) Sep 29, 2009 New Jersey
    Beer Trader

    I am pretty sure the Atlantic City Beer and Music Festival will have lots of brewery reps. Been that way the past 6 years I have been going.
    19etz55 likes this.
  19. beertunes

    beertunes Poo-Bah (4,790) Sep 24, 2007 Washington
    Beer Trader

    Honestly, most of the questions people have would be answered by reading the description in the program you're given when you enter. Read while you're in line.
    19etz55 likes this.
  20. mecummins

    mecummins Initiate (0) Nov 16, 2012 Illinois

    I don't necessarily think that the actual brewer has to be at the fest (although I'm always impressed when they take to time to be there) but I do think it's the brewery's responsibility to educate the people who are pouring the beer. When you go to a wine tasting, the pourers can speak reasonably well on what you are tasting. Why shouldn't the beer industry follow suit? Beer drinkers are just as curious as wine drinkers.

    Half the reason I go to beer fests is so I can ask questions. If I wanted to just drink beer, I could go to a bar.
    19etz55 likes this.
  21. Charlie_Hoss

    Charlie_Hoss Initiate (0) Jan 2, 2013 New Jersey
    Beer Trader

    Not to hijack this thread but I was reading about the VIP ticket for this event and it seems like it is very "padded" by schwag...They do say if you buy the ticket you can try limited beer in the "mustache tent" etc but I was wondering if anyone has experienced this in the past because it sounds like it probably is not worth the cost (double the cost of admission).
  22. UCLABrewN84

    UCLABrewN84 Poo-Bah (12,204) Mar 18, 2010 California

    Nothing good ever happens in the mustache tent.
    19etz55, tobelerone and Charlie_Hoss like this.
  23. Charlie_Hoss

    Charlie_Hoss Initiate (0) Jan 2, 2013 New Jersey
    Beer Trader

    thats what i was thinking lol
    19etz55 likes this.
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