Inapub Magazine - Issue 51 - February 2016

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Issue 51 February 2016 ÂŁ3.95

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A King Star shines brightly on the Wych Wood drawing on the expertise and knowledge of our master brewers to hand craft a big and bold 4.8% ABV lager which is laced with flavour. Enjoy a spicy herbal nose and a crisp quaffable elixir.

FACTS Craft keg has the market leading category price point – an average of 36 pence premium over most World lagers.* Consumers are looking for variety, quality and flavour resulting in a greater appetite for the craft category. Craft beer sees a unanimous ROS increase in continuous stockists.* A natural fit with the emerging pop ups, BBQ and gourmet fast food restaurant styles. Supported with premium crafted POS. Available in 50L keg. *CGA Strategy Brand Index May 2014.

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ubs have the privilege of being with customers for the best and worst moments of their lives. While they are on hand to help with the celebrations at weddings, birthdays and anniversaries, they can also play an important role in bidding a final farewell at funeral receptions. These may be at the opposite end of the emotional scale but they are no less significant for those involved. They can also be part of a pub’s business plan and in this issue we explore how you can do this whilst remaining sensitive to the needs of your customers. We also visit the Unruly Pig in Suffolk, a pub that has dealt with trauma of its own in the form of a devastating fire but is now back in business. On top of that we look at trends in drinks for the year ahead and report on the continuing rise of gluten-free menu options.




Cheers, p


this month hosting a wake • bouncing back • products


drink What’s happening in the big drinks categories • RTDs


eat Wholesalers guide • Gluten-free menus • Beer Butt Chicken


play St Patrick’s Day• live music• what’s on this month


back-bar business law • #pubsgetonline • Next Generation


time at the bar saints to celebrate• your work for charity







inapub Editor Matt Eley • Deputy editor Robyn Black • Production editor Ben Thrush • Chief executive Barrie Poulter •






Sales & marketing director Matt Roclawski •


Sales manager Adam Skinner •





Subscriptions •

Printed by Warners Midlands

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No purchase necessary. Download the Blippar App, scan the Pepsi logo using the app, click the “play to win” button and follow the instructions to be in with a chance of winning. Max 1 prize per person. Promotion opens 00:01 11/01/2016, closes 23:59 20/03/2016. 700 prizes to be won: 70 framed items of football memorabilia and 630 Pepsi Max branded footballs. 18+, GB only (excludes NI). Normal restrictions apply. Promoter: Britvic Soft Drinks Limited, Breakspear Park, Breakspear Way, Hemel Hempstead HP2 4TZ. See for full T’s and C’s.

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this month.

BARSTOOL EXPERT The complete guide to THE NEW DRINKING GUIDELINES Fancy a swift half the day after, the day after tomorrow?

Um, I’m not sure. None of the experts can seem to agree.

I’d rather go today.

So, what’s our industry have to say about it?

No can do I’m afraid, I’m following the new recommended drinking guidelines, as released last month.

At the time, not so much. The trade bodies and major drinks companies say they weren’t consulted.

Let me guess, the advice is to drink less?

There’s a surprise. So how dangerous is a tipple then, exactly?

Correct – 14 units per week for men and women is now considered sensible. How many actual drinks is that though?

The new advice keeps the risk of mortality from drinking at below one per cent. Which means what?

It’s the equivalent of five pints of five per cent beer or seven glasses of wine. Well, have one pint tonight, one tomorrow, one the next day…

This latest advice is to have a few days a week off the sauce. That’s going to be great for the pub trade at a time when people are already going out less.

Especially as drinking levels are already falling — consumption is down 19 per cent since 2004. Why the change in guidelines then?

Guidance hasn’t changed in 21 years and the government says new evidence of the dangers of drinking has come to light. Like what? p05 barstool expert.indd 5

According to some scientists an hour of watching TV a day or eating a bacon sarnie a few days a week is more dangerous to your long-term health. This is totally over the top and another example of the nanny state.

That’s exactly what Nigel Farage said. Say what you like about the man’s politics, he loves a pint in a pub.

Worth a punt: Promoting lighter options such as shandies, wine spritzers; and soft drinks, and offering smaller serves to concerned customers. Don’t bother with: Driving a car, which carries the same risk of an early death as drinking any more than the new recommended amount.



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IN THE TRADE THIS MONTH Oxford boffins: local pubs make you happy Going to the pub makes you happier with life and have more friends. A report by Oxford University on behalf of CAMRA found that people who have a local have higher life satisfaction and are more trusting of others than those who do not have a local. For more on the findings see

Pubs celebrate AA rosette haul The Black Swan in Oldstead, Yorkshire, is one of just a handful of pubs and restaurants to be awarded four rosettes this year by the AA. The accolade recognises venues that have shown great improvement in the culinary standards and services they are providing.

TOP STORIES ON TRADE.INAPUB.CO.UK Be Part of the Next Generation 8 of the world’s weirdest ways to drink beer How can we solve the chef shortage crisis? The golden horde: 16 golden beers Where great does not always mean local

Bread beer puts food waste to good use Hackney Brewery has unveiled Toast ale, a beer made from crusts and unsold loaves of bread that would otherwise have been thrown away. Surplus bread is mashed to crumbs, toasted then brewed with malt, hops and yeast to make a pale ale with malty and caramel flavours. The idea came from charity Feedback, which campaigns agains food waste.

Off the tour bus, into the trade

10.1% The average increase in pub prices last year according to agents Christie & co

A chef to the stars is taking centre stage himself by signing a deal for his first pub. Jim Cleaver worked at acclaimed restaurant Le Gavroche before joining catering company Eat To The Beat, where he toured the world with rock stars. Bands who enjoyed his food included The Rolling Stones, Blur, Oasis, Take That and U2. He has now opted for a different pace by taking a tenancy with Shepherd Neame at The Granville in Lower Hadres, near Canterbury. He said: “I had a lovely break after all those years working long hours in kitchens, but recently I began to feel the urge to do something new…The Granville ticked all the boxes.”


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MOVERS & SHAKERS Heineken UK’s managing director for the on-trade, Lawson Mountstevens, will now run its pub division in the newly created role of Star Pubs & Bars managing director. Chris Jowsey, formerly trading director Star Pubs & Bars, has been appointed as director of on-trade. 26/01/2016 12:58

this month.

Should craft brewers be pilloried for selling out to corporates? VIEW FROM THE BAR JACK CARROLL The sale of Camden Town Brewery to AB InBev raised more than a few eyebrows in the beer world. That tends to happen when figures as high as £85m are involved. Here was one of the first of the new generation of London breweries selling out to the corporate big boys. Earlier in the year Meantime went the same way, pocketing an “undisclosed” sum from SAB Miller. Cue much gnashing of teeth, and bitchy asides from the keyboard warriors of Twitter. ‘How could they do such a thing?!’, ‘This is the end of craft beer.’ Blah, blah, blah. What nonsense. The UK beer industry has undergone remarkable changes, certainly since we started HellHound Brewery in 2009. New breweries are popping up every day, and a generation of tech-savvy aficionados follow their every move with an almost religious zeal. I can only speak for myself, but I fell into the world of brewing beer quite by chance, and my plan was, and is, simple. To make and sell beer. See the key word there? “Sell”. Brewing is hard work. You get wet, constantly. Pumps stop working, suddenly. Filthy barrels have to be cleaned again and again. Pubs shut early (and have guard dogs protecting the casks you are hoping to collect). It is hard graft, guv. At HellHound, we do not expect a

large American drinks company to pull up outside and start offering us oodles of cash to sell up. We have spent the last few years, building up the brewery in an area where a pint of Woodforde’s Wherry is seen as the height of sophistication. This has not been easy. But if our friends from across the water do show up, I would have a duty to consider it. I have children who I would like to secure the future of. I have bills that I would like to settle. I have had one holiday in the last few years, another would be rather nice. This is business, pure and simple. We are not all trustafarians. People get very attached to their favourite beer and breweries. They buy into the ethos and, understandably, are hacked off when said brewery takes the corporate dollar. If the beer changes, if the accountants at the global giants slightly adjust the recipe to gain that little big more bang for their buck, and you don’t like it, don’t drink it. Find something else. There is always something else. This wasn’t the case 10 years ago.

Jack Carroll is the owner of artisan Suffolk brewery HellHound. Follow him on Twitter @HellHoundBeer

SECOND OPINION Many years ago when a big regional UK cask operation snapped up a smaller brewer of a much loved beer, local fans inundated its new owner with complaints about the drop in quality and the change in taste. Yet here’s the thing — none of the planned changes had yet been implemented. At the point the complaints came in, the beer was being brewed with the same ingredients, in the same place, by the same people as before. At least two separate brewers have told me similar versions of this story over the years and I predict more to come, given recent events. What it demonstrates is

that sometimes preconceptions and beliefs can cloud the truth about what makes a good beer. Do larger corporations tend to make decisions based on cost-cutting and streamlining operations? Yes. Does that mean a mega-brewer can’t make great beer? No (and if you don’t believe me, go and sample some of the recent Guinness brews or a few of Carlsberg’s Jacobsen range). If you think brewers who sell up are automatically sellouts then fine — but judge the subsequent beers on their own merits.

Robyn Black is Inapub’s deputy editor

What’s your opinion? Email your thoughts toto What’s your opinion? Email your thoughts p6-7 news.indd 7



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Bidvest Own Brand

The foodservice supplier is looking to make shopping easier for customers with the launch of four ranges under its new Own Brand umbrella. Essential Supplies, Everyday Favourites, Premium Selection, and Farmstead cover all the bases from equipment and supplies, ingredients, meat and Craft Guild of Chefs-endorsed products. New products will be launched every month.

Monster Ultra

This Monster is just for pubs. Ultra is a lighter-tasting zero -calorie and zero-sugar product that comes in a new 355ml size. The drink was created in response to criticisms that energy drinks look and taste the same.


What’s new in the pub this month

Jestic Foodservice

The foodservice suppliers are branching out further in the world of dough. A deal with Scandinavian bakery specialists Sveba Dahlen and Glimek means they can now provide the trade with specialist pizza-making and bakery equipment. The new products will be on show at trade fair Hotelympia (February 29 to March 3).

WKD Blush

“An overtly female piece of NPD for WKD,” according to brand owner SHS Drinks, this pink four per cent ABV variant is flavoured with passion fruit. It is designed to add a touch of sophistication to the range better known for bright blue beverages and tasteful turkey hats. 01452 378 500


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this month.

Cleaver & Keg

Two old school friends with a love of beer and charcuterie teamed up to create this range of beer-friendly pub snacks. The four initial variants are matched to specific beer styles: Chorizo Slices for amber ale, Salami Slices for pale ale, Strips O’Beef for porters and Hot Strips O’Beef for hoppy IPAs. Their teachers must be proud.


Pioneering Mexican microbrewer Cerveceria de Baja California is bringing three of its beers to Britain: Cucapa Clasica, Cucapa Honey Amber Ale and Cucapa Chupacabras American Pale Ale. Try saying that last one three times quickly after sinking a few. Available from importer Heathwick.


My Pub Calendar

Cheshire publican John Tribe has a handy second income stream from a design business. One of the products is pub personalised calendars for customers to take home and remember their local. As well as lovely photos the calendars feature offers, vouchers and competitions. Clever, eh?

Done Deal

How was the transfer window for you? Did your team sign this January’s answer to Dele Alli, or have you got the kind of bang for your buck that Liverpool did with Andy Carroll? Football fans can celebrate or commiserate transfer activity with this limited-release beer created by Sky and Molson Coors. The four per cent golden ale will be available until the end of this month.

The latest in a star-studded line of beers brewed by bands, the 4.1 per cent pale ale is a collaboration between Welsh brewer Brains and Welsh rock legends Stereophonics. The beer has a pump clip designed by frontman Kelly Jones and will be available in pubs from March. Have a nice day. p8-9 stuff.indd 9

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The last hurrah by MATT ELEY

Charlie and Carole Edgeler host an average of one wake a month at The Jubilee in Pelynt. The mood at pub wakes is not always sombre, sometimes it feels more like a big celebration of the life of someone who loved having a good time

Around 300 years ago, Benjamin Franklin said ‘nothing is certain in life except death and taxes’. In the intervening years the pub trade has been vociferous about one of those subjects. Less so when it comes to the other.

For while we lobby for levies to be dropped, we still demonstrate the same British sense of awkwardness on the subject of death as we do when it comes to the act that creates us all in the first place. But death is part of life. And it can also be part of your business plan, with pubs being a popular choice for funeral receptions. It should go without saying that while these can be profitable, they have to be treated with sensitivity. Charlie and Carole Edgeler host an average of one wake a month at their St Austell tenancy, The Jubilee Inn in Pelynt, near Looe in Cornwall. As Charlie explains: “They are so important and they are sensitive. It could be a mother, father or a very close friend. The first thing you do if someone walks into the pub is drop everything to speak to them about it. Give them time.” One piece of advice he offers is to get every detail of the day agreed in writing. “It’s really important that they know what we are going to do so, after that meeting we send a detailed letter or email confirming everything we have discussed,” he says. “When people come in they might not be thinking clearly. The letter breaks it down and avoids any confusion or misunderstanding.” Those details could include timings, food and drink options, music and the room to be used for the event. He also advises people they can pay a few days after the event, rather than chasing them on the day. When it comes to food, buffets work well. The Jubilee offers three options on its “Celebration of Life” buffet menu, ranging from £12 to £19.50 per person. However, they add that it is important to be flexible. Carole says: “You can ask them what kind of cake the person who is having the funeral would have liked, you can make it personal p10-11-12 lead feat.indd 10

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this month.

The funeral director’s view

A fitting send-off: a funeral procession passes The Jubilee

We used to go to The Jubilee regularly. It was the natural choice for the funeral reception

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to them. You are helping think for them.” This approach also works for background music and whether or not the family would like to display a photo of their loved one. Much of this type of business comes to The Jubilee from customers or the village but they also provide local funeral directors with information to go in their care packs. Alan Davis, licensee at The Fountain Inn in Lower Gornal, Dudley, the West Midlands, has a similar approach to getting the message out about its services. “We are a popular pub and most wakes are for people who will have used the pub,” he says. “There is a crematorium in the area and some of the funeral directors are locals here, so it’s word of mouth. There’s nothing special about what we do, we are just respectful and professional.” Professionalism and ensuring staff know how to behave is another important consideration. Gareth Leakey, group manager of multiple operator The Distinct Group, says

Mike Owen, chief executive of the National Association of Funeral Directors, says pubs are great places for funeral receptions because “they offer a relaxed environment in which family and friends can share memories of the person they’ve lost.” He advises licensees to speak to local funeral directors for guidance on how to offer services. “They might also perhaps invest in a leaflet designed specifically to set out what they can offer to funeral clients,” he says. “These can be given out within the venue, available on their website and even offered to the funeral directors to give out to clients on their behalf.” And he adds that licensees should be flexible to the differing needs of customers. “Everyone is different and every funeral is different. Some clients may prefer a private room or discrete area of the venue to avoid mixing with regular customers — although as funerals become increasingly viewed as a celebration of life, as well as a farewell you may find that clients become more relaxed about needing privacy.” For more info visit



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Toasting the memories: The Fountain in Dudley picks up business hosting wakes for funeral held at a nearby crematorium, while flags at The Jubilee fly at half-mast as a mark of respect for the departed. Pubs’ role as a space for communities to come together makes them a natural venue for many people looking to celebrate the life of a loved one



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organisation is vital because you generally have less time to prepare and plan a funeral reception than other events at pubs.

Speed and sensitivity

One of its four pubs, The Adam & Eve in Mill Hill, London, hosts up to 50 receptions a year. “It’s still a function but it is a different email or conversation, you have to show empathy,” Gareth says. “You have less time to organise things than you would with a wedding, so you have to be sensitive but speedy.” He adds: “We ensure staff are trained to use appropriate language. You still greet people with a smile when they come in the main entrance but they don’t want to be listening to chart music when they do so.” He also says that each event will have a different feel and it is up to the family and friends to dictate the kind of reception they want. “They are not all sombre, sometimes they are a big celebration of people who loved having a good time and the reception reflects that.” Back at The Jubilee, Charlie adds that your other customers need to be considered as well. “We normally have someone telling customers that we have a

wake on. They know they are coming into a sensitive environment.” The approach they take is working, according to 82-year-old June Libby. Her husband Fred died three years ago and she explains that The Jubilee was the natural choice for the reception. “My husband’s grandparents used to own the Jubilee and we used to go there regularly on Saturdays and on special occasions. It was the obvious place to have the wake,” she tells Inapub. “They are very receptive to people in times of trouble and they are very sensitive in their approach. Nothing was too much trouble. “They got the food I wanted and Fred liked Acker Bilk’s music so that was playing in the background on the day.” June has lived in the village for 55 years and still visits the pub on a regular basis. “Carole has been very good to me since I lost Fred and we meet up once a week for a chat about what’s been going on in the village.” Perhaps that is really the key to this working in your pub, caring for your customers and knowing how you can help them while remaining professional. 26/01/2016 13:27

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RISING FROM THE ASHES Matt Eley reports on a pub that battled back from a blaze

The fire gave us the opportunity to make changes that have been well received

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Imagine having your best day of takings ever and then just hours later the whole thing going up in smoke. Not metaphorically, literally. That’s what happened at The Unruly Pig in the Suffolk village of Bromeswell, just a few weeks after new owner Brendan Padfield took the helm. The retired lawyer had only opened his first pub — previously known as The British Larder — at the end of March last year. The fire, believed to have been caused by an electrical fault in a walk-in freezer, struck on June 23. It came as the pub was starting to establish itself as an informal venue with a high-quality food offering. Brendan tells Inapub: “We were beginning to build up our reputation. We were developing a very healthy trade, the Sunday before was Fathers’ Day and that was our best day ever. People were beginning to recognise it as a different brand. “We had our Michelin inspection, we were going to be listed and as it transpired we got into the Good Food Guide with the best rating in Woodbridge and Ipswich.” The blaze started in the pub’s courtyard in the early hours of the morning, gutting 40 per cent of the building. It took 50 firefighters to get it under control and left Brendan and his team facing months of rebuilding work. So did he ever think his new career just wasn’t meant to be? “I did on more than one occasion. But it is something I’ve always wanted to do and I’m pretty tenacious. Personal trauma in whatever capacity is difficult to deal with in life and even though nobody was injured it was far more traumatic than I imagined. But the truth is you have no choice — you have to get on with it and rise to the challenge.”

So he focused on bringing the Pig back to life. “The machinery starts with the insurance, at the basic level of ‘we have to get this site secure’, then we have to appoint contractors and come up with a plan as to how we get it built. “From my side I have to sit down with my team and say ‘are you still with me?’” They were. He managed to retain 95 per cent of his staff, including the management team. He held regular meetings to keep them involved in the rebuilding process. Between them they came up with new ideas to implement in the pub — seizing the chance to make changes to the layout, such as repositioning the bar. And when it reopened late last year it was well received by locals who were keen to see the 16th-century building back in business. “Structurally and cosmetically it gave us the opportunity to make changes, which have been favourably received,” he adds. The pub is now trading well, with its “Britalian” menu attracting diners from miles around and earning rave reviews. And although the fire was an accident, it has ensured Brendan and his team are now even more focused than before on the safety of the pub. “You learn lessons and the pub is now in a much better state,” Brendan says. “We have rewired and changed our procedures because we never want this to happen again. “We were assidious before but we have certainly upped our game because if you go through this you certainly never want it to happen again. And therefore you go overboard about it but that’s not a bad thing. “ And neither was the decision to ensure The Unruly Pig rose again. 26/01/2016 13:41

this month. Ensure you’re insured When asked what his advice would be to licensees facing the same situation, Brendan does not hesitate. You need to be prepared for this worst-case scenario. “The first thing is to make sure you are well insured,” he explains. “I was well advised with great cover. My loss adjuster told me many people under-insure because they go for the short term remedy. That short-term gain can potentially be longterm loss. “Make sure you are covered for property, contents and business interruption because it has made a difference. If you have that insurance the professionals will take over and take a lot of the hassle away from you.”

The Unruly Pig

Bromeswell, Su


Pic: East Anglian Daily Times

Staff: 17 Ownership: Pu nch lease Wet/dry split: 60/40 Best-selling di sh: The Unruly Bur ger Best GP dish: G razing platter p14-15 famous for.indd 15

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drink The dangers of drinking were predictably back in the spotlight in January (new year, old news). First up, new drinking guidelines were revealed: 14 units per week for men and women (see Barstool Expert, page 5), then the Local Government Authority (LGA) called for the makers of alcoholic drinks to put calorie information on packaging. This is necessary, according to the LGA, because some people are unaware that drinking can contribute to weight gain. For these people, newsflash: it does. For those who already know it, newsflash: it might not be as bad as you think. Research done into female views of beer some years ago, for example, revealed the majority thought a pint of beer was more fattening than a bowl of chips. It is not — a pint of beer contains about 180 calories on average; a bowl of chips is somewhere in the region of 800. Dispelling such myths can only work in our favour. On


top of that, beer has many nutritional benefits, most of which both women and men are unaware of. It is packed with good stuff like potassium, magnesium, selenium and is chock-full of B vitamins, for example, while the benefits of the antioxidants found in red wine have been well documented. We should not be afraid to arm people with such information. If it means they sink fewer bevvies in one sitting, so be it; promoting responsible drinking is a must for all of us in the alcohol trade these days. Some of the big players are already on board — Diageo committed to putting nutritional information, including calories per serving, on brands last March, while brewer AB InBev announced last month it would do the same for its beers. And I think we can be sure (it’s as predictable as a puritanical media storm in January) more drinks companies will follow suit. What’s less predictable, perhaps, is that this could actually do more favours for our industry than damage.

We should not be afraid to arm people with information. If it means they sink fewer bevvies in one sitting, so be it

COMMERCIAL BREAKDOWN PURDEY’S • Thrive On Actor Idris Elba will be the face of health drink Purdey’s in the biggest campaign for the brand to date, which owner Britvic confirmed will launch in April.

COCA-COLA • Taste the Feeling Coca-Cola has announced plans for the first ever single global campaign across all Coke variants. The campaign, called Taste the Feeling, will include 10 new TV ads and a new brand anthem.

CÎROC VODKA • Zoolander To celebrate the return of Derek Zoolander to the big screen, Diageo has created a campaign for its Cîroc Vodka brand. Activity includes a special “Blue Steel” bottle designed by Mario Testino.

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drink. St Austell Brewery Ruck & Roll Glenmorangie Milsean

What would whisky taste like if it were aged in charred red wine barrels? That’s what the chaps at Glenmorangie asked themselves. The result is Glenmorangie Milsean (“Meel-shawn”, Gaelic for sweet things), a complex Scotch with hints of sugar cane, ripe fruits, candy sweetness and buttery coconut.

Kicking off a season of Six Nations-themed beers is St Austell Brewery’s Ruck & Roll pale ale. Available through this month and next, the beer is a four per cent ABV “classic” cask ale with notes of grapefruit and toffee and a good bitter finish.

Patrick Fisher Ten Bells Norwich

Look out for... Krombacher Radler

Germany’s best-selling radler-style beer is to hit the UK this year. Krombacher Radler is a 2.5 per cent ABV blend of Krombacher Pils and a bespoke lemonade, which is also made at the brewery. It will be promoted at a series of UK events to celebrate this year’s 500th anniversary of the German purity law (Reinheitsgebot). 0845 070 4310

Backyard IPA

To meet demand for IPAs you can drink all evening long, US beer importer Heathwick has launched a 4.5 per cent ABV brew from Michigan operation Saugatuck Brewing Company. Backyard IPA is described as “light-bodied, refreshing and well-balanced, with a burst of hoppy flavour,” ideal with Indian food, grilled meats or anything fried.

On the bar

Franklin & Sons’ mixer range

Franklin & Sons, a craft soft drinks brand, is moving into the premium mixer market. The range forms part of the Global Brands portfolio and was launched last May. The four new additions are Natural Indian Tonic Water, Original Ginger Ale, Sicilian Lemon Tonic and Natural Light Tonic Water.

We’re lucky to have a huge amount of space here, so when it came to a refurbishment last year I decided to put in a small distillery. I needed to make some significant changes to the building but luckily our pubco, Greene King, could see the potential in the idea and was very supportive. I’ve got one small still now, which can do about 600 bottles a batch, and we produce two gins: Bullards Norwich Gin and Firewater Gin. We’ve created the perfect gin and tonic to sell in the pub and we’ll be pushing it as a sipping gin, just over ice, or you can buy it by the bottle. Soon customers will be able to get involved in the process and handbottle and label their own gins. We’re planning to add some rums in the next year and longer term I’d like to do a whisky as well. p18-19 drink intro.indd 19

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CATEGORY INSIGHTS Red and white tied in first while Italy shakes up the fizz


of wine buyers have purchased wine from pubs




Prosecco, Prosecco, Prosecco. The Italian sparkling wine remains in strong growth, in fact demand is such that it may well soon outstrip supply, which could push up prices and create opportunities for other sparkling wines such as the French crémant style, English wine or even Argentinian or Brazilian fizz. Success has come at a cost to the Cava category, however, which now finds itself in decline. The bulk of the category remains in still wine, however, which accounts for 81 per cent of value and 87 per cent of volumes overall. Red and white wine remain equally popular for drinkers in the on-trade, followed (unsurprisingly) by rosé, Prosecco and Champagne, in that order. Recent innovation has come from fruitflavoured wines, such as the Accolade Wines-owned Echo Falls Fruit Fusions, and research shows drinkers are also interested in wine-based cocktails such as Sangria and lighter spritzer-type options.

Growing concern with healthy living cuts both ways With young people drinking less and one in five adults now claiming to be teetotal, the soft drinks category is of increasing importance for publicans. Research shows that 57 per cent of adults who drink alcohol see soft drinks as a better choice than low- or non-alcoholic beers, ciders and wines if they are trying to cut down. Thus, while the off-trade has outperformed the on-trade in terms of volume sales over the last five years, Mintel is predicting a return to growth for of adults think soft drinks the category in the on-trade “going forward”. are too sweet Sugar has been the other key issue for the category


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drink. recently, particularly since the prime minister has hinted at a “sugar tax,” and drinkers agree — 46 per cent of adults view low sugar content as just as important as the brand. This shows how vital it is alternatives are made available, particularly in pubs, where range is all too often limited. Licensees should be looking to recent product launches in sparkling juice drinks, soft drinks made with natural sweeteners and more local and craft brands to plug gaps in their offer.

CID ER The bubble has truly burst and innovation is needed Tapping into the craft boom is one. Aside A football World Cup and a rugby one, on from Westons’ entry into the market just top of two rather disappointing summers over a year ago with its craft canned brand over the last two years, have taken their toll Caple Rd, there’s been little activity in this on the cider category, which last year area. Producers should look to ape craft experienced another drop in volume and the first drop in value in more than a decade beer cues and create the same kind of chat around apple varieties as brewers have (down one per cent to £3.1bn). around hops. Also of concern is cider fans’ attitude to More association with food could also price. Only 30 per cent of them are willing help. Thatchers and Merrydown have to spend more than £4 for a pint of cider in dabbled in this area for some time and a pub, according to a recent survey. brands such as Aspall have had great Eighteen per cent aren’t even willing success with cider and foodto pay more than £3, which will matching in export markets. make boosting category value Heineken embarked on even more difficult. some work in this area There’s also been a last year for its Strongbow reliance on innovation in brand but with drinkers the fruit cider sector at the of cider drinkers are willing to embrace the idea expense of apple cider. This interested in larger (54 per cent of cider drinkers is significant because, while wine-style bottles for think that cider is as good as fruit variants remain very sharing wine for drinking with meals) the popular, particularly with the sector needs to do more to embrace under-35s, apple remains the largest the opportunity – and do it soon. segment of the category and over half of cider drinkers cite it as their favourite. However, there is good news to be found All stats from Mintel for the sector and a return to growth is forecast in the next few years, to reach sales of £3.4bn by 2020. This is partly down to cider’s increasing year-round appeal — a mere nine per cent of cider drinkers now drink cider in the summer but not in the winter — but there are other opportunities as well.

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CATEGORY INSIGHTS LAGER Big brands retain their appeal amid all the innovation Despite the boom in craft breweries and a plethora of beer styles hitting the market, the big lager brands remain popular. According to a survey of 1,944 adults, commissioned by Mintel, 43 per cent of beer drinkers still prefer the beer brands they usually buy, with 34 per cent stating a preference for well-known breweries over smaller ones. As a result, lager still accounts for almost three-quarters of the value and volume of the overall beer market when you combine on- and off-trade sales. Low and no-alcohol lager is a growing opportunity for the category, as new research from mega-brewer AB InBev shows – pointing out that nearly a third of of UK adults have drunk British people have now tried alcohol-free lager in the past six beer. Moreover, one woman in 10 enjoys it months on a weekly basis and 18 per cent of Londoners drink it whenever they go out. A spin-off of this has been the launch of a raft of lower-ABV fruit-flavoured beers, such as Carlsberg’s successful Carlsberg Citrus and San Miguel 0.0% Limon variants. These are proving a growth area for lager, broadening the category’s appeal and drawing in new, younger and more health-conscious drinkers. So-called speers (spirit beers) are also providing a fillip for a category that has in previous years suffered from a lack of innovation. Heineken’s Desperados brand continues to perform well and the brewer launched Foster’s Rocks, in Spiced Rum and Classic Rum flavours, last year aimed at 18 to 24-year-olds.


Stats from Mintel

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“In this year’s Carlsberg UK Consumer Insights Report we reveal the pub remains the UK’s number one leisure activity — outshining casual dining and café culture. To maintain this, the on-trade should utilise the insights available to them in order to understand and respond to customers’ ever-changing needs. “Our insights also reveal that this year pub operators should focus their offer on premiumisation — encouraging customers to trade-up — “experience occasions”, such as beer tastings, and live sporting events, specifically UEFA EURO 2016™ of which Carlsberg is the Official Beer. With 51 matches over 30 days and a television audience of billions, it’s a huge opportunity for the on-trade. “As a brewer we’re shaping our beer and beverage portfolio around these insights and supporting the on-trade to identify new ways to drive incremental visits, spend and profit. Continual growth of on-trade spend — which reached £145bn in 2014* — shows there is plenty of opportunity for operators to boost customer spend in 2016.” * Oxford Economics/ Future Foundation vision, September 2015

David Scott Director of Brands and Insight Carlsberg UK

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Prize includes Category 1 match tickets – Travel + 2 nights 3 star hotel accommodation – Carlsberg hospitality and stadium transfers To find out more about our unrivalled UEFA EURO 2016™ support, speak to your Carlsberg account manager.

If you would like to start trading with Carlsberg UK

*Open to non-brewer-affiliated free-trade licensed premises in GB. Excludes Northern Ireland. Account, installation of Carlsberg or Carlsberg Export (“Product”), minimum stocking, purchase & sales volume growth requirements apply. 1 entry per 11 gallon keg of Product purchased directly from Carlsberg UK during period from installation of Product until 31st March 2016. Prizes: 32 winners (16 new & 16 existing customers) of 1 x pair of tickets to UEFA EURO 2016 group match in France, plus hospitality, return flights from the UK and 2 nights in a 3* hotel. Winners selected at random. Draws on 5.1.16 & 7.4.16. Max.1 prize per outlet. Winners and guests must be 18+. For Ts&Cs, full entry requirements & full prize details please see

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CATEGORY INSIGHTS SPIRIT White spirits, US whiskey and spiced rums make a splash The removal of the tax escalator and the cut in duty in last year’s budget have had a positive effect on the market, with Mintel expecting to see prices stabilise and market value increase over the next five years. Currently much of the excitement in the spirits category is around white spirits — gin is in and vodka remains the most popular spirit to drink by a (long) shot. Research suggests 48 per cent of adults drink vodka, with the under-35s — and the 18 to 24-yearold market in particular — the most likely consumers. In dark spirits things look slightly different. Value in the market has risen of dark spirits drinkers are nearly six per cent in both the on- and offtrades between 2013 and 2015, though interested in flavoured version of their favourite volume remains the same. The on-trade accounts for just over half (53 per cent) of brands value sales in this category but only 18 per cent of the volume, reflecting the price difference and smaller serves. Blended whiskies and brandies continue to struggle in the pub as much as in the supermarket, while American whiskey and golden and spiced rum are thriving in both. Licensees looking to make more from this lucrative category might note that 37 per cent of adults claim to drink dark spirits in pubs and/or bars, very little of that was drunk at events such as live music nights, festivals or watching sport. There could be an opportunity there for pubs willing to innovate.


Stats from Mintel



“Spirits is the second biggest drinks category in the on-trade and growing so it is a key profit opportunity for licensees. To further drive spirits sales, Diageo is investing in its brands to maintain excitement amongst consumers, provide the on-trade with new innovation to sell to their customers and match evolving trends. Alongside the standout success we enjoyed with both Smirnoff and Cîroc last year, we also saw Captain Morgan re-ignite the rum category — a spirit with even further growth potential this year. As ever, stocking these top-performing spirit brands prominently on the back bar continues to help licensees maximise profits. We know consumers are going out less often, but spending more on each occasion. Switched-on licensees can make the most of this trend by stocking premium spirits, upselling and providing customers with inspired serves they can’t replicate at home. Inspired spirit and food pairings are also going to play a big part in 2016 and we will be supporting the on-trade throughout the year to help them make the most of this opportunity.” Ronak Mashru, on-trade sales director, Diageo GB

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CATEGORY INSIGHTS CASK Craft boom brings some zest back to the pub stalwart As craft beer continues to grow and with an end to the beer tie potentially in sight, things are looking positive for cask fans. The category is in fact in volume growth in the on-trade, up 4.5 per cent, to a total of 634 million pints per year. That means one in six pints of beer served in pubs is now a cask ale. New drinkers are being lured into the category by the plethora of styles and veneer of cool that the craft beer boom has provided. Women are coming into the category, and 75 per cent of those who try it continue to drink it, as well as young people — a third of all 18 to 24-year-olds have now tried cask ale. The “with food” opportunity is also Of all cask ale drinkers first finally looking as if it has potential. tried it within the past Boosted by investment from the panthree years industry There’s A Beer For That campaign, which concentrates heavily on beer and food matching, the idea of swapping wine for beer has become more acceptable. For licensees, however, the big opportunity is around offering choice — but not too much choice. Research has shown, time and again, that drinkers want less churn on the beer taps than publicans — the former want to see four or five different beers in a four-week period, while the latter want to offer an average of seven.


All stats from the Cask Report 2015


“Category growth comes from making the offering accessible to all, especially younger drinkers who are new to cask ale. This means demystifying the offering to make it more approachable and training staff to provide clearer communication at the point of purchase . This year we see a real opportunity to engage with consumers and drive education on taste, provenance and flavour so that there is a better understanding of hops, food matching and the versatility of the product. Wadworth is also introducing some brand new beers that fit with the current consumer taste profile and, bearing in mind the importance of stylish presentation, our brands will be enjoying a facelift with the introduction of contemporary pump clips providing clarity of message on the bar. Crucially, all this has to be coupled with quality. Craft keg is clearly zeitgeist at the moment in urban locations, but well-kept craft cask beer is a sign of an excellent publican, so we’re looking to develop both channels and some interesting bottled beers to boot.” Paul Sullivan Sales and marketing director Wadworth

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RTDs revisited by ROBYN BLACK

Classic brands such as Hooch survive, while others, such as the London Rd jam jar cocktail range take a new approach

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Ah, 1993. Haddaway asked us ‘What Is Love?’ The X-Files hit screens for the first time and the Bacardi Breezer was launched, catapulting RTDs into every pub fridge in the land.

Since then life for 18 to 24-year-olds, the category’s core market, has changed considerably. These days only nine per cent of them are in work, a significant number are still living at home and their free time is just as likely to be spent in the gym, Snapchatting from a coffee shop, or at home watching Netflix, as it is propping up the bar. So, are RTDs even relevant to today’s youth? The category remains in decline –

down 15 per cent in volume and 14 per cent in value to £240m in the on-trade (CGA MAT to 01.10.15) – but this decline is slower than last year and it remains a sizeable market. What is more, a new generation of RTDs is coming through to reinvigorate the category. A number of these have emerged from the Global Brands portfolio which, alongside “classic” RTDs such as VK, also includes the revamped Hooch brand and Hoopers, a range of “traditionally British brews,” which has grown 64 per cent in volume over the last year. “For this market there are an everincreasing number of drinks choices, so we need to keep RTD brands relevant and appealing,” explains marketing and export director Simon Green. “A brand like Hoopers, with its more traditional packaging, brown bottle and its British cues, offers something different.” It also lends itself to lower-tempo occasions, offering the tantalising prospect of getting a slice of the “with food” opportunity (today’s 18 to 24-year-olds being more likely to eat out than previous generations at the same stage of life). “The Hoopers variants are all made with

27/01/2016 00:04

real fruit juice and we promote that a lot,” says Simon. “The way we position them (against cider) also makes them a great option for mealtimes.”

Cocktails to go

The core RTD market has changed, and the pace of change is faster than at any time in the past 20 years

Cocktails are another area of inspiration for RTD producers. Global Brands itself has just brought out London Rd, for example, a three-strong range of ready-to-drink jam-jar cocktails. And they are not the only ones – Hi-Spirits launched the Tails range in 2014. “We were looking for a ready-to-drink cocktail partner for some time, as we think it will be a pretty big category in five years or so,” says Dan Bolton, the company’s managing director. “People are drinking cocktails more often, in more venues and on more occasions already, so we are confident that this high-quality, pre-mixed option will benefit both bartenders and consumers.” This shift to the cocktail sector is significant for RTDs because it enables them to come out to play earlier in the evening, driving consumption. The daddy of the category, WKD, is also looking to other sectors for inspiration. Brand owner SHS Drinks is this month launching WKD Blush, influenced by the growth in rosé wine and wine fusion drinks such as Echo Falls Spritz (see “New RTD

launches for 2016”). Marketing director Debs Carter explains: “For WKD this is an overtly female piece of new product development but, having undertaken a huge piece of research into this generation recently, we found there is much more blurring between the genders. For example, it is just as socially acceptable for men to drink rosé wine as it is for women now.” This isn’t the only piece of innovation to come out of WKD this year. Already the company has rebranded WKD 1 to WKD Shot, with a new flavour and look. Debs adds that the team is looking closely at the cocktail market for possible future inspiration.“Our research demonstrates, not just that the core RTD market has changed, but that the pace of change is even greater now among this group than at any time in the last 20 years,” she says. “We need to bring new people into the category and we can’t do that by just doing what we’ve done before.”

New RTD launches for 2016 WKD Blush A pink WKD flavoured with passion fruit, aimed at adding some sophistication to the range. WKD Shot Originally WKD 1, this renamed shot variant comes in two flavours: Blue and Fiery (sweet chilli & mango flavour). Hoopers Plum & Sloe Following huge success during pre-Christmas testing, this will become part of the brand line-up this year. VK An as yet unconfirmed new flavour to be released later this year.

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Welcome back! Molson Coors (UK) is delighted to welcome Staropramen back into its World Beer portfolio. The UK’s leading Czech beer, Staropramen has strong brand heritage and history, brewed in Prague, the brewing capital of Europe. 2016 sees a multi-million pound investment behind Staropramen to strengthen and grow its status as a top 10 World Beer brand in the UK.* We’re doing our best to make this transition as smooth as possible. If you’re an existing customer and need technical support with the changeover please call 0845 6000 888 (option 2). If you’re keen to talk to our Sales Team about the brand and support for it, please contact your Account Manager or Field Sales Executive in the first instance, or email If you’re interested in becoming a new stockist of Staropramen, please email

*Source: CGA Brand Index MAT to 18/04/2015.

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eat Hello and welcome to this month’s caretaker-managed Eat intro pages. I’ve been left holding the wheel while Inapub conducts its search for the next Eat editor, which is great as it offers a chance to escape the Dickensian conditions of the print production sweatshop and go to some pubs. Pubs like The Gun in London’s trendy Hackney, for instance, whose uncompromising way with chicken and beer is featured opposite. The Gun also serves an innovative menu of small plates from beetroot carpaccio to Persianspiced lamb chops, but it wasn’t always this way. The first time I visited The Gun, the new owners hadn’t had time to hire a chef, so the sole item on the menu was a cheese toastie. This was a special piece of toast though. Bechamel sauce laced with extra-mature cheddar, mustard and spices on Hackney Wild sourdough bread from the local E5 bakery, spiked with red onion and a radish pickle made to a secret recipe. It was the best cheese toastie I’d ever tasted.

Favourite desserts by region

with BEN THRUSH Another pub, where I used to go to watch football, also went down the toasted-cheese-only route. That one was from the opposite end of the toastie spectrum – I’m talking cheap white sliced, sub-Burger King processed cheese and reformed ham, served on a paper plate with a garnish of supermarket own-brand crisps. That didn’t matter though. The dish was sold for £1.20, a fair price which doubtless netted the pub a healthy GP. And it solved a problem for a football fan with no time to eat dinner before settling down with a beer to catch the kick-off. As our lead feature on p10-12 points out, people are always going to die. But before that, they are always going to eat. And as the two toastie champions discussed here have proved, there’s always a way to meet that most basic of needs. Wherever you set the bar, if you can find that way within the parameters of your business model, you’ll give punters a compelling reason to come to your pub and stay there.

Most popular seafoods for a Valentine’s meal


1. Lobster

Chocolate cake

2. Oysters

Fruit crumble

3. Scallops

Source: Lyle’s Golden Syrup Dessert Survey 2015

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4. Crab

Source: 27/01/2016 01:00

eat. A beer in a bird

XXXXXXXX BEAVERTOWN BEER BUTT CHICKEN Xxxxxxxx Nick Stephens, The Gun, Hackney, London

Frank Godfrey chicken “Frank Godfrey is a boutique butcher in Highbury. He’s not cheap, but the meat’s amazing. It’s a selling point for us.”

“We pierce the can and stick it up the chicken’s bum. It cooks in the juice of the beer, then we remove the can at the end. You can taste the Gamma Ray, and it keeps the meat moist. You’ve got to get it just right, or it becomes an overly beery hangover of a meal.”

Soy, harissa and honey glaze “The harissa gives it a spicy skin. You can use stout for Beer Butt Chicken, but with the soy and harissa you’ve already got a lot of strong flavours in there, so pale ale works better with this.”

Limited edition “We didn’t put this on the menu, we had a limited number each day and put the word out on Facebook for people to book their chicken. It was served as a sharing dish for four people, with carving materials, bacon-salted chips and six sides. It was £45 for a chicken, and we sold out.”

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Chilli and coriander “All of us at The Gun like really fiery stuff, I get disappointed with the lack of heat in food. It mixes it up a bit and adds colour.”

Beavertown Gamma Ray “It’s worth using good beer, it tastes much better. Gamma Ray is the most recognisable of Beavertown’s beers, and has a great design on the can.”

Beavertown tap takeover “We’ve always stocked Gamma Ray, and Beavertown are the go-to trendy beer company. So I called them up and said let’s do a tap takeover one weekend. We had their beers on every tap, and the Beer Butt Chicken. I’ll probably do another next year, and the chicken’s definitely coming back.”

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Wholesalers guide If you’re thinking about where to go to get the food fix your pub needs, look no further than our rough guide to some of the best wholesalers out there.

Bidvest Foodservice

Speciality: Delivered wholesaler Bidvest operates from 22 depots and three regional distribution centres around the UK. The business is a foodservice specialist offering a wide range of branded products developed for the catering market as well as its extensive own ranges. Offers: The Bidvest website features a regularly changing range of offers including Daily Deals, multibuys and online exclusive prices. Interesting fact: The business changed its name from Bidvest 3663 in June 2015. Website:

Booker Bestway Wholesale

Speciality: Bestway Wholesale Group operates more than 60 cash & carry depots nationally as well as a delivered wholesale business, covering fresh, chilled and frozen food, along with a wide range of non-food products. Own brands include the Essentially Catering range and the Cellar Estates wine label. Offers: Bestway offers regular price promotions on selected products, fixed for set periods to enable operators to plan. Interesting fact: The business operates under both the Bestway and Batleys names, according to region. Website:

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Speciality: Wholesaler Booker operates 172 Booker cash & carry branches, along with 30 Makro stores, Chef Direct and Classic Drinks delivery businesses. Along with branded products, Booker own labels include Chef’s Essentials, Chef’s Larder, Lichfields and Farm Fresh. Keg beers are available as part of a wide on-trade drinks offer. Offers: Regular price promotions include deals from across all product categories, including weekly promotions. Interesting fact: Makro, acquired by Booker in 2012, sells a larger non-food range including catering equipment and office furniture. Website: 27/01/2016 00:39



Speciality: Delivered wholesaler Brakes offers an extensive range of fresh, frozen, ambient and non-food products. As a foodservice specialist, the majority of its products are developed exclusively for the business. The Woodward Foodservice operation, owned by Brakes, has a wider range of branded products. Offers: Brakes has a number of customer reward and incentive schemes, including Nectar Points on purchases. Interesting fact: The Brakes group includes several specialist divisions including Prime Meats, M&J Seafood and fruit and veg specialist Pauleys. Website:

Balearic Islands. The offer includes a range of more than 450 own-label products under various brands. Offers: Fairway negotiates regular deals and special prices on behalf of members. Interesting fact: Fairway was originally founded by five frozen food wholesalers. Website:

JJ Foodservice

Speciality: JJ is a national foodservice specialist with eight branches across the UK, offering same-day collection or next-day delivery via telesales and online ordering. Offering fresh, frozen, ambient and non-food lines, the range includes a wide own-label offer. Offers: Products are discounted through a fortnightly offers promotion featured online. Interesting fact: Customers can also order through the JJ Foodservice app, which guarantees the best prices. Website:

Country Range

Speciality: The Country Range Group works on behalf of 13 independent wholesale food suppliers who operate from 19 depots across the UK and Ireland. The Country Range brand includes a range of grocery and frozen products developed specifically for foodservice, while Country Range Professional focuses on hygiene products. Offers: Country Range runs regular promotions, as well as offering recipe ideas. Interesting fact: Country Range customers can access the Key to Nutrients online tool to help with menu planning. Website:

Fairway Foodservice

Speciality: Fairway Foodservice is a network of 17 independent catering food distributors operating throughout the United Kingdom and Ireland, as well as having a presence on the Spanish Costas and p34-35 wholesalers.indd 35

Landmark Wholesale

Speciality: Landmark Wholesale Group is a central trading and marketing operation representing more than 35 independent wholesalers operating both cash & carry depots and delivery services. Its own-brand catering range includes the Caterers Kitchen label, offering more than 400 products. Offers: Landmark offers regular national promotions tailored to catering customers. Interesting fact: Landmark Wholesale’s exclusive Vintners Collection wine range has won numerous awards. Website:

FEBRUARY 2016 35 27/01/2016 00:39

Gluten-free goodness

Game for a bit of gluten-free: rabbit, duck and chicken dishes at The Ship

While it makes sense for pubs to tailor their offer to the majority, it’s worth remembering that customers with a particular requirement often make the decision about the venue for the whole group.

So the cask ale drinker will walk past several pubs to find one that keeps its beer well, and bring his lager-drinking mates with him, while the vegetarian in a group will lobby their friends to eat where the menu features an interesting range of meat-free options. Increasingly, there is also demand for menus that cater for customers with food allergies and intolerances. An estimated one in 100 people has coeliac disease, which is caused by intolerance to gluten (see ‘), and more are reducing their gluten intake for lifestyle reasons. Analyst Horizons’ regular Menurama survey shows that 50 per cent of eating-out brands now have gluten-free options, up from 30 per cent just a year ago. The number of gluten-free dishes has also increased by more than 135 per cent year on year, and is up six-fold since summer 2011. Brands communicate this in a variety of ways. For example, Whitbread’s Beefeater menu online includes an information icon which gives details of allergens in dishes in a pop-up box, while customers at Greene King’s Hungry Horse chain can download a PDF with a dish-by-dish breakdown of allergens including gluten.

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Proving that independent pubs can take their share of this growing trade, The Ship in Downham Market, Norfolk, has been shortlisted for two years running in the Free From Eating Out Awards, earning a Highly Commended in 2015. Co-owner Keith Thomas is himself a coeliac, and almost all dishes on the pub’s menu are gluten-free. “I didn’t want to be one of these places that just provide a steak and a baked potato as an easy gluten-free option,” he says. “We offer the same range of dishes as any pub menu. We’re very well known for our fish & chips and battered onion rings because we use gluten-free flour in the batter. Everybody has the same and everybody loves it.” The Ship promotes its menu through the local branch of Coeliac UK and uses the award logo in its marketing, with Keith estimating that 60 per cent of bookings include “at least one customer with a glutenfree requirement, and of course they all bring friends with them.”

Can’t taste the difference

Keith adds that customers who aren’t concerned about gluten really don’t notice the difference, thanks to the availability of good quality gluten-free products. This is a good reason for going the whole way, menu-wise, he suggests. “I’d say it’s more difficult to do half and half; it’s easier to entirely go gluten-free.The biggest problem is cross-contamination. You can’t make a sandwich with ordinary bread on the same board as a gluten-free sandwich, and batter and flour can easily contaminate other things.” Stephanie Hickford, customer marketing controller at Bidvest Foodservice, makes the point that “the vast majority of gluten-free market growth is down to self-diagnosis”. She suggests “ancient grains as an alternative to gluten, such as buckwheat, amaranth, millet, sorghum, teff and fashionable quinoa, 27/01/2016 12:43


Gluten-free products Although unprocessed potatoes are gluten-free, supplier Aviko points out that not all frozen chips can make the same claim. Aviko’s most popular products, including its Premium Fries range, are produced in a dedicated gluten-free factory.

From Nestlé Professional, new Maggi Gluten Free Vegetarian Gravy scores highly in consumer taste tests, helping chefs cater to diners with special dietary needs, and can be ready in just two minutes. Gluten-free Alabama Fudge Cake from Funnybones Foodservice is pre-portioned at 14 slices per pie, and can be served as a dessert with cream or ice-cream, as well as with tea and coffee at any time of day.

Kofoodle offers kitchen management software and a consumer app to keep track of allergens

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are a great way for pub chefs to get on board with the trend.” Lee Curtis, licensee at The Bowler in Clerkenwell, London, says: “We’ve noticed that demand, not just from diagnosed coeliacs, but from people going gluten-free for lifestyle and fitness reasons, has increased dramatically.” In response, the pub uses Kafoodle kitchen menu-management software, which helps to keep track of recipe ingredients, including allergens. Kafoodle is supported by a consumer restaurant-finding app, “so diners with allergies know they can come and eat at the pub safely.”

What is gluten? Gluten is a protein found in wheat, rye and barley. Coeliac disease is caused by a reaction of the immune system to gluten, and can manifest in a range of symptoms from mild to severe. Naturally gluten-free foods include potatoes, rice and lentils, and specially made gluten-free foods such as pasta and pizza bases, as well as gluten-free beers.

Source: Coeliac UK,

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play with MATT ELEY

Six Nations

Throughout the month on terrestrial TV. Romantic Rome hosts Italy v England on Valentine’s Day a week after the first round of matches on February 6 and 7.

Champions League

February 6, 13-14, 26-7 Live on BBC and ITV

It’s back after the winter break and Man City, Chelsea and Arsenal all have a chance to progress. Well, that’s being generous. Arsenal face Barcelona in the pick of the last 16 fixtures. Tuesday, February 23 Live on BT Sport


Happening this month

Get out the Stars & Stripes, cook up some chicken wings and get ready for one of the fastest-growing sports on the telly. Sunday, February 7 Live on Sky Sports

Valentine’s Day

Ah, the day when couples stare longingly into the bottom of a pint glass and wonder when they can go home. Play the role of Cupid with a speed-dating event, romantic movie night or a bottle of something fizzy for a tenner. Sunday, February 14

Leap year

You get an extra day in February this year courtesy of it being a leap year. Traditionally a chance for women to propose. You could also throw parties for those poor souls who only have a birthday every four years. Monday, February 29

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BOOK FOR THE CORNER One for the bookshelves of beer aficionados and historians, Crafting a Company looks back at the history of Fuller, Smith & Turner — the last remaining traditional brewery and pub company in the capital. Corporate affairs director, Richard Fuller says: “Being the oldest remaining independent brewery in London is something we’re extremely proud of. This book is the perfect way to express our heritage, while showing how we have developed.” Crafting a Company is available for £25 from the brewery’s online store at

Let me entertain you Antosh Samek Clayton’s, Marlow

Novus Leisure gives away £50,000 to customers London operator Novus Leisure is believed to be the first pub group to give away £50,000 tax-free to customers in a competition. The group, which has 46 venues in the capital, ran a competition in January also including 10 runner-up prizes of £10,000 bar

tabs. It was promoted with a social media campaign asking #50kWhatWouldYouDo with customers entering unique codes on till receipts. For every five entries customers received a 50 per cent off voucher.

Edinburgh’s Best Bar None winner is a work of art An Edinburgh bar has new artwork on its walls after winning the Best Bar None title for the Scottish capital. A painting of Hemma Bar was commissioned as part of the prize and handed to owners Anna and

Mike Christopherson. It was painted by Ross Macintyre, who specialises in Edinburgh scenes and pubs. Hemma also won the Best Independent and Heart of the Community Awards.

DJs and live music form the bulk of the entertainment at this awardwinning pub. Thursdays is live music night and on Fridays and Saturdays the DJs get the party started. Licensee Antosh says: “With the live music we try and keep it upbeat because it’s a Thursday night and people want to party. With the DJs we have a lot of funk, soul and R&B. It’s stuff I like because I struggle to sell it otherwise. “Generally it is free but we sometimes charge. We have DJ Yoda and Norman Jay booked for later in the year and we charge for those. “We have had a new bar open nearby recently but this type of event shows we are the party place.” The pace changes on Monday nights when the bar is open as a boutique cinema for diners. Movies coming up include The Martian, Macbeth and Straight Outta Compton. Quiz nights are also held on Wednesdays, leaving Tuesdays event-free and Sundays available for private hire

Artist Ross Macintyre (centre) with Mike and Anna Christopherson. Pic by John Thompson p40-41 play intro.indd 41

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Worth a few notes by MATT ELEY

No need to fret: Northern Guitars branched into hospitality when it found all the shops around it had turned into bars

Live music not only livens things up for customers but can also make your till play the lovely ‘ker-ching’ tune that should be music to your ears. A study by analysts CGA, commissioned by PRS for Music, shows that a pub’s average wet sales will go up by nine per cent when live music is introduced. The survey of 6,000 pubs reveals that, perhaps surprisingly, the impact is even greater in venues that sell food, where wet sales can go up by 15 per cent. This has been evident at The New Inn in Tywardreath, Cornwall. Steve and Christine Holland have been running the St Austell pub for a decade and have always had live music at the heart of their offer. Bands travel from across the country to perform in the pub’s 60-capacity music room. A couple of years ago they moved into food for the first time, building an extension for a restaurant, which is run as a separate franchised business.

The customers attracted to The Strand Bistro will not always be live music fans but Steve says the two businesses complement each other. “If you are in the restaurant you can’t hear the music because there is an outside wall between the two rooms,” he explains.“We get people coming for a meal and then being surprised that they can take in a gig as well. It works the other way too, with music fans eating before the gigs.” It has ensured the pub, which is also renowned for its real ale, has a new string to its bow.

Breaking into the bar scene

In a similar way Northern Guitars in Leeds is diversifying its offer. The guitar shop has been serving musicians for more than 20 years in the city’s busy Call Lane. In recent years a plethora of bars have emerged in the area, leaving Northern Guitars as the last remaining shop. In order to survive in its new trading environment it recently applied, successfully, to run a bar and live music at the shop. Owner David Baguley explains: “We are right in the middle of the bars and clubs so we had this idea for a live music bar. It is like going back to the 1950s when you had coffee bars with live music. “We know the owners of the bars and clubs and they have been very supportive.” The bar and stage will be on the ground floor, with the venue’s traditional guitar shop above. Dave expects the two sides of the business will feed each other. “We will have bottled beers and locally sourced ales, wines and spirits. The initial food offer will be from the café next door but, in time, we intend to produce our own,” he says.

To find out how Northern Guitars got its licence despite being in a “Stress Area” see Keep it Legal, page 48. p42-43 live music.indd 42

27/01/2016 01:30


Why live music is great for business

• •

Do you want a gig with that? The team at The New Inn, where the restaurant and live music offer are separate but complement each other

• • • • •


a £10,000 Music Makeover

This year Inapub has teamed up with PRS for Music on its relaunched Music Makeover competition. Three lucky pubs will win thousands of pounds to improve the live music offer at their pub with prizes of £10,000, £5,000 and £2,500 up for grabs. In previous years pubs have spent their winnings on sound systems and equipment which, along with expert advice from PRS, has helped them increase their takings and further their reputations as great places to enjoy live music. To be in with a chance of winning you need to make a simple 60-second film explaining why you deserve the cash. Films can be made on phones as it is the message rather than film-making skills that will be judged. For more information visit p42-43 live music.indd 43

• • •

It brings in more customers as well as attracting new customers to your venue (live music fans as well as fans of the artist) When live music is playing, wet sales can increase by 9-15 per cent, according to new research Supporting emerging talent can create a loyal customer base Your live music offering is another way of gaining more media coverage You can drive loyalty by being known as the destination for live music in your area Customers from further afield will be attracted to your live music offer Staff retention can be improved due to your venue being an exciting place to work It offers a point of difference in the market place, particularly if you champion a specific type of music You can increase your revenue with door splits, merchandise etc Most people love live music!

Provided by PRS for Music

FEBRUARY 2016 43 27/01/2016 01:30

PRS for Music relaunches its Music Makeover competition. Music Makeover was launched in 2000 by PRS for Music, with the specific aim of helping pubs with their live music offer. Independent research has shown that pubs using live music increased their revenue by 9 percent compared to pubs without live music*. In a time where pubs are struggling, a live music offer can be vital. Most of PRS for Music’s top members started their careers playing in small live music venues which is why PRS for Music feels so passionately about the value live music can bring. The Music Makeover competition helps the winning pubs reap the rewards of live music in their venues. The competition has annually rewarded a winning UK pub with a Music Makeover comprising a £10,000 prize alongside a bespoke music consultancy from a leading expert and is celebrated with a high profile event featuring performances from key PRS for Music members. For 2016, PRS for Music is working alongside Inapub magazine to promote the winning prize of a £10,000 makeover alongside second and third places (£5,000 Music Makeover and £2,500 Music Makeover respectively). Historically, the prize money has been spent on new live equipment or installing a high-end sound system with previous winners quickly seeing the positive impact on both their takings and reputation as a live music venue.

Ed & Elisha Sproat, landlord & lady of The Hickory Inn, Tiverton, Devon – 2015 winners “There is no way we would’ve had this opportunity without PRS for Music. We wouldn’t have gotten to this stage so quickly – a lot of bands don’t have the ability to bring in equipment like this. It will be a real positive thing to get bands that haven’t performed in many venues before.”

So do you think your pub would benefit from a Music Makeover? To enter you need to: 1. 2.

Have a valid PRS for Music licence Submit a 60 second video telling us why your pub would benefit from a £10,000 Music Makeover (the video can be filmed on a phone – it’s what you say that counts)

For full details on how to enter, including previous winner information and full terms & conditions, please go to: Deadline is Friday 25th March at 5pm

About PRS for Music PRS for Music is a society of around 115,000 songwriters, composers and music publishers – its members. It represents the rights of these members by licensing organisations to play, perform or make available music. It then distributes royalties to those members and societies fairly and efficiently. *Research conducted by CGA Strategy Limited on behalf of PRS for Music showed that wet-led pubs with live music, when compared to similar pubs without live music, experienced an increase of 9 percent in additional revenue over the year due to its live music offer (of no more than once a month).* The report can be found on

In A Pub magazine ad page2.indd 44full page.indd 1

20/01/2016 16:20:05 22/01/2016 10:28




things that make St Patrick’s Day special

Guinness has a closer link with St Patrick’s Day than any other brand with any other day p45-46 st pats.indd 45

St Patrick’s Day is the friendliest day of the year. That’s not just some hack making a vague statement based on a few decent nights out on the Black Stuff — that is an actual fact. Four years ago Guinness inspired hundreds of thousands of people to attend events across the world and pledge that they believed March 17 was the friendliest day in the calendar. The judges at Guinness World Records (which was sold off by Diageo 15 years ago but still retains the name of the famous stout) agreed and the record was set. More party people attended events in America than anywhere else but second on the list was the UK — so what is it that makes the patron saint of Ireland such a popular chap on these shores? Here are nine things that make St Patrick’s Day special.




Other drinks

There’s no getting away from it, so why pretend otherwise? Guinness has a closer link with St Patrick’s Day than any other brand with any other day. On average pubs that activated a Guinness kit last year sold 118 extra pints, of which 72 would have been Guinness (61 per cent). Katerina Podtserkovskaya, head of Guinness activation at Diageo, says: “St Patrick’s Day in particular is a natural and unique sales opportunity for the Guinness brand, linking to its Irish heritage and provenance, and it’s always an event we are keen to support.”

While sales of pints will naturally increase, you can also give your drinks offer a sparkle by serving Black Velvets: Guinness and champagne or prosecco in a flute. Whiskeys such as Jameson, Bushmills and Tullamore Dew should also be given more prominence on the back-bar. Baileys and Irish coffee sales should soar too.



Katerina says that Guinness drinkers are generally higher spenders in the pub*, so you should look to provide plenty of food options. Irish stews, smoked salmon with horseradish, soda breads and mussels are among the traditional meals that will add to the * Kantar Worldwide Panel, 12 months to June 2014

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helpfully branded all point-of-sale with “St Patrick’s Weekend” to help you extend the party. Licensees might want to think about running a variety of events to keep things fresh. How’s that Irish quiz coming along?

occasions. Licensees with pubcos should look for deals — for example, Enterprise has teamed up with Booker to give publicans fully costed themed menu ideas to help increase food sales and profits.



St Patrick’s equals a party and there are things you can do to encourage the atmosphere. Decorations help, as will music. Live bands are an option but failing this you can create playlists using apps such as Spotify. You could also try Virtual Jukebox — a piece of kit designed specifically for the trade. It allows customers to select music to hear in the pub from their phones but the venue retains control through pre-set playlists. Andy Hill, Virtual Jukebox chief executive, says: “Louder, up-tempo music can be used to generate a St Patrick’s Day party atmosphere, creating a different experience from a normal day, where music may be quieter.”




The weekend

This week St Patrick’s falls on a Thursday, which gives pubs the chance to really boost the average midweek takings. This is where Facebook, Instagram and Twitter play a huge role in promoting what you are doing. Guinness is providing licensees with digital images to use on social media






Silly hats

Sunday March 19 is the culmination of this year’s Six Nations tournament, which is a handy way of keeping things going. Wales play Italy at 2pm, followed by Ireland and Scotland at 5pm. If anyone is still standing at that stage they might want to watch France v England at 8pm. All matches are on BBC or ITV.

OK, so there’s Valentine’s Day in February but let’s be honest — the months after Christmas are a challenge. St Patrick’s is a chance to party and welcome the spring and good times ahead. It’s also only a week until Easter (March 25-28).

Oh come on, who doesn’t like a silly hat? Guinness is handing out 10,000 pointof-sale kits to pubs, which include a flag, several metres of bunting and 15 Guinness hats — let the good times begin.

For more patron saints’ days to inspire you, see page 55

Well, if Thursday is the new Friday, you are virtually at the weekend, so St Patrick’s celebrations can continue for days this year! Guinness has

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#MADEOFMORE ad page2.indd 47

*CGA Analysis 2015 . The GUINNESS word and associated logos are trademarks. © Guinness & Co. 2015

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back-bar business

Anna Mathias is a barrister with national licensing law firm Woods Whur. The niche firm acts for clients in the licensed trade throughout the country. Please contact Anna at or on 0113 234 3055

KEEP IT LEGAL How one business adapted to its retail and licensing environment

Pic: Clever Cupcakes

To secure the viability of the business, the owners came up with a bright idea. The challenge was to persuade the authorities that this should be an exception

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A case I dealt with recently gave a perfect illustration of the difficulty of establishing an exception to policy to enable an application for a new licence to be granted, despite the premises being located in a Cumulative Impact Zone, or “Stress Area”. Northern Guitars has traded as a guitar shop for more than 30 years, the last remaining independent guitar retailer in Leeds – and the last surviving retail shop on Call Lane, which lies in Leeds city centre, designated as a “Red Zone”. Applications for new licences – and for material variations such as those seeking to extend hours or increase capacity – within the zone will be refused, save in exceptional circumstances. Frequented by the likes of Status Quo and Oasis, Northern Guitars has attained iconic status over the years. Its founders, Dusty and Dave, are well-known and respected in the music industry. They sold the Kaiser Chiefs their first guitar, and so can take some of the credit for helping to establish Leeds’ most successful band to date. However, the shop has struggled of late, largely because Call Lane has become the location for a number of late-night, and other, licensed premises. Put simply, the retail character of the street has vanished, and, with it, footfall. To secure the viability of the business for the future, its owners came up with a bright idea – move the retail space to the first floor and turn the ground floor into bar-café space, where guitars would continue to be displayed and accessories sold, but otherwise be a space for musicians to gather, arrange gigs,

and play acoustic sessions. Similar premises have proved successful in towns such as Harrogate. They would sell coffee and cakes – guitar-shaped – but also alcohol. The challenge: persuading Leeds’ Licensing SubCommittee that this should be an exception. Whilst police and licensing objected to the application – as a matter of policy, given the premises’ location – they were perhaps not as forceful as in other circumstances. We explained the application carefully: the premises were not going to become a bar. They would attract the existing, mature clientele from the music community, not designed for drinkers, and with no “happy hours” or discounting of any kind. All of this struck a chord. Nonetheless, the committee kept us waiting for a nail-biting hour before deciding to grant the licence. “We were pleased and relieved, the future of Northern Guitars hopefully secured. This application was a true “one-off” and the police fairly conceded that, in terms of being exceptional, it was “getting there”. Licensing were even-handed, too, pointing to the fact that the shop has been something of a “victim” of the red zone, rather than actively seeking to locate there, as some operators do. I suspect that the decisive factor was pulling the requested hours back, so that alcohol sales would cease at 10.30pm, with close at 11pm. Even on the police case, the problems in the area start at midnight, so any argument about cumulative impact evaporated. A good, satisfying win, which showed just how exceptional you have to be if you are to succeed in a Stress Area. 27/01/2016 01:42

Go behind the scenes at with

Next Generation is sponsored by

Supported by

Members of Inapub’s new club for the future stars of the industry will get to experience the buzz of the newsroom as Sky Sports News goes live. Our first Next Generation event has been confirmed for April 11 at the studios in Isleworth. Guests will network with fellow licensees before enjoying sessions with leading lights from the trade who will be able to help their businesses grow. They will then be treated to an exclusive tour of the studios and the production gallery. Alison Dolan, deputy managing director of Sky Business, says: “We’re really looking forward to being part of Inapub’s new Next Generation event and hosting it at Sky Studios. Those attending represent the future of the pub industry and I’m looking forward to hearing about the new approaches and ideas they are bringing to the on-trade. It’s going to be an insightful day.”

Sky’s Alison Dolan: ‘Those attending represent the future of the industry’

Be part of the day!

Next Generation has been established to provide a networking group and series of events for new licensees and managers with aspirations of taking on their own venues. As well as the Sky event there will be two more across the country later in the year. Next Generation membership is free but you must attend at least one event a year to claim the benefits, which include:

• •

Opportunities to network with entrepreneurs at a similar stage in their careers who are the “future stars” of the industry The chance to attend informal events at venues offering new concepts with food, drink and business intelligence all provided free of charge Taking part in discussions about market-leading business-building ideas presented by a speaker panel designed specifically for members Being recognised and profiled as a “rising star” within Inapub The opportunity to meet suppliers who will share market knowledge and the latest product/service solutions Discounts on products and services provided by Inapub.

• • • •

To find out more email …and briefly tell us about you and your pub. We will be in touch with the rest.

FEBRUARY 2016 49 p49 next gen.indd 49

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back-bar business

Get noticed #pubsgetonline HEADLINE SPONSORS

Welcome to the fifth instalment of our #pubsgetonline campaign. The campaign was conceived following some exclusive research, for which we surveyed hundreds of licensees and 1,000 consumers. We found that a staggering 98 per cent of internet users have searched online to find information about a pub. Yet it is estimated that just under half of UK pubs and bars do not have a website.

Can people find you online?

By far and away the most frequent way people find a website is via a search engine, the most popular of which is Google. This is no less true of pubs than anything else. Our research shows 82 per cent of UK internet users use Google to search for information on a pub they are about to visit. So, how to ensure that your pub appears

in the results? This is what the art of search engine optimisation (SEO) is all about.

Tricks and tips

When searching for a pub most people are after information — location, menu and drinks list, for example — so make sure these are clear and up-to-date on your website. The language you use is also important, people search how they speak, so use “dogfriendly” not “canine-kind”, for example. You also need to get your website talked about and shared, so push any new content on Twitter and the like. Finally, keep your knowledge up to date. In the world of SEO things change quickly, so stay ahead of the curve via resources such as our own #pubsgetonline site and updates from Inapub’s very own resident geek, Mark Daniels (@markinapub).

‘We wanted to make sure people could find us through Google’ Martin Molloy, The Stanley Arms, Wesham, Lancashire With a new football stadium being constructed half-a-mile away, Martin felt it was vital the pub’s website featured prominently on Google, so that visiting fans could find the venue. By adding key phrases to the homepage, registering with Google My Business and getting Facebook verification, Martin optimised the site, ensuring it appeared in search results. Martin also took advice from the Inapub web team on ensuring his site was mobile-friendly (a must these days for anyone looking to push their way up Google rankings) and keeping the website frequently updated. “It’s definitely paid off,” Martin says. “We’ve had customers walking in because they’ve found the pub on their phone, and think the site looks great compared with others on a mobile.”

#pubsgetonline is supported by

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Source: Inapub consumer survey 2015


Use Google to search for information on a pub

CHOOSE YOUR WORDS People search the way they speak, so think how you would tell somebody about your pub in a few short sentences and write that BE MOBILE-FRIENDLY Over 60% per cent of web traffic is now mobile and Google will rank a mobilefriendly site more highly GET OTHER SITES TO LINK BACK TO YOU Ensure neighbouring businesses and local news sites link to your site the more links pointing to you, the better your search results will be USE SOCIAL MEDIA such as Facebook and Twitter, or blogging services, and link to content on your website USE ANALYTICS Monitor how traffic is finding your website; understand the search terms people are using p50-51 pgo.indd 51

CALL TO ACTION Make sure there is an end goal: collect an email address, a form to contact you or book a table. You can use this to measure how successful your site is

27/01/2016 01:54

time at the bar

PLATE OR SLATE? Where the nation’s publicans stand on the really big questions Keris De Villiers

The Pig & Whistle & The Old Sergeant Wandsworth London Multiple-award winning licensee Keris runs two pubs in London’s Wandsworth with her husband Lee

Plate or slate? We use both and I think an elegant plate or creative way of serving a meal can really make the dish. Our burgers look great on wooden boards, our steaks on slate and chicken strips in baskets. It is also a fine line, people go too far and get a little too creative – serving food in a dog bowl or plant pot is too much for us!

Background music or silence is golden? There is nothing better that hearing a buzz of chatting and laughter when you walk into a full pub. It creates an amazing atmosphere and if it’s busy enough you often can’t even hear the music. But when it is quieter it is depressing for there to be just silence – so we will go with background music.

Cash or Apple Pay? The technology we have now just makes life so much easier, we get used to it so quickly. Now when someone doesn’t have Apple Pay or contactless you feel like the service is so much slower. We happily prefer cash unless you have contactless.

Packet of pork scratchings or Michelin stars? We sell a wide variety of bar snacks – which include pork scratchings and even Mini Cheddars. We have a few weird and wonderful bar snacks as well – dehydrated bag of Fruit and Veggies, a really healthy option. And we do bags of bugs, from Black Ant and Sago Worms to Jack Daniel’s Locusts and Chilli Crickets! But that doesn’t mean there isn’t space for a great food menu as well — we serve great pub food alongside our bar snacks.

On the tab or no credit here? A pub wouldn’t be a pub if you didn’t at least have a few regulars, the odd few that prop up the bar usually seven days a week. We would never turn them away if they were a few pounds short this week – so definitely on the tab for us. Of course, only for the ones we know and trust.

Wear what you like or uniforms for the staff? We don’t like taking away our staff’s personality by dictating their entire outfit, so we provide a branded T-shirt that says ‘ Same shirt, different day’ and then encourage them to wear what they want for the rest – if that means loads of earrings and tattoos on show, so be it. Our customers love that all our team are different and individual.

Dogs allowed or the only animals are on the menu? We welcome dogs with open arms at The Pig & Whistle. We have bowls of water and free Bonios on hand and we offer a dog menu as well. Our dog menu even features dog beer, which is a great seller. Dogs often drag the customers in the pub as they are being taken for a walk and let’s face it, most dogs are better behaved than humans. p52 plate or slate.indd 52

27/01/2016 01:58

Do you know how much profit is chilling in your back-bar fridge?

A visit from the experts and N I W £250-worth of Diageo stock

Did you know your fridge is your secret salesman, showcasing products that are in growing demand and offer significant profit margins? Are you making the most of this opportunity to drive sales? Diageo, a global leader in beverage alcohol, has teamed up with Inapub to help licensees unlock the potential of their fridge space. Research by CGA shows that the packaged category, including bottled fruit ciders and craft beers stocked in the fridge, is a huge profit opportunity for pubs — worth nearly £2.4bn to the on-trade*. On top of that, you can get more value out of these products. For while products stocked in fridges account for 12 per cent of on-trade volume, they make up 20 per cent of the value*, meaning this is an area that should be given plenty of attention. And with categories such as packaged fruit cider, world lager and premium lager all in growth* there is huge potential for you to maximise your margins.

THE PRIZE To help you make the most of your fridge an expert from Diageo will visit the winning pub to provide market-leading advice and support. The tips they give you and the profits you make as a result will then be showcased in later issues of Inapub. And if that wasn’t enough you will also receive £250 of stock in the form of these innovative brands:

Pimm’s Cider Cup Shaking up the cider category, the Pimm’s Cider Cup combines classic Pimm’s No.1 spirit with English Cider and a hint of classic Pimm’s strawberry and cucumber flavours

Guinness West Indies Porter One of the original — and hugely successful — beers from the Guinness Brewers Project

Hop House 13 The five per cent double-hopped lager is the latest brew to emerge from the Guinness Brewers Project To be in with a chance of winning, simply send your name and pub details to Please include the words ‘Diageo secret salesman competition’ in the subject line.

* All stats from CGA Strategy Brand Index MAT data to 28/11/2015

The competition is open to UK licensees and managers aged 18 years and over. The winning pub must be eligible to stock Diageo products. The winner will be informed by the end of March 2016. The editor’s decision is final. For full T&Cs see p53 diageo comp v2.indd 53

FEBRUARY 2016 53 27/01/2016 02:02

time at the bar Wetherspoons has been working on a new-build project to raise even more money for its chosen charity, CLIC Sargent. Head of food development Jameson Robinson has hand-painted 52 bricks in an art project for the cause. Each week one will be sold for between £30 and £100. The painted bricks feature themes such as the Theory of Relativity, Space Invaders, Digital Clocks and Love Hearts. The bricks were displayed in an art show at Gallery Different in Central London at the end of last year.

THE COLLECTION TIN What pubs around the country are doing to help good causes Hogs Back Brewery in Surrey has presented local children’s charity Challengers with a cheque for £7,500, rounding off a year-long support programme which saw the brewery raise nearly £16,000. The George in Twickenham was the top fundraiser in Taylor Walker’s 600plus pubs last year. It contributed £2,641 of the £71,000 the group made for Prostate Cancer UK. And 70 teams from 19 Taylor Walker pubs took part in a 5K Santa Dash across Clapham Common to raise a stunning £150,000 for Great Ormond Street Hospital.

The Cock in Wootton, Bedford, has raised a frightening amount of money for Macmillan Cancer Support. After being shut for nearly a year the pub is back in business and has collected £8,000 for the cause. The cash has come in from various events, including a Halloween party last year.

Customers at Greene King’s pubs raised £26,000 for ITV’s Text Santa campaign at pub quizzes across the country. Young’s pubs smashed its £100,000 target for the Wooden Spoon last year – bringing in £130,000 with a range of activities for rugby’s children’s charity Three men shaved beards they had been growing for a year at The White Lady in Worstead, Norfolk. They raised £1,400 for Great Ormond Street Hospital The Pheasant Inn in Dunstable raised £500 for Herts and Beds Bloodrunners from customer donations.

Are you raising funds for a great cause? Let us know at

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A canon of excuses for knees-ups beyond Paddy’s party 1. St Mungo’s Day


January 13 Perhaps best known as the patron saint of Glasgow, St Mungo – or St Kentigern, as he is also known – can claim to be the patron saint of those accused of infidelity. Not entirely sure how we can celebrate this exactly, a BOGOF offer on drinks perhaps? A have-your-cake-and-eat-it pudding?

2. St Scholastica’s Day

February 10 God’s got his hands pretty full, yeah? He doesn’t have time for every prayer for help with a crush or case of genital warts, so the Church created saints with a range of expertise. St. Scholastica takes care of rainstorms.

3. Saint Valentine’s Day


February 14 With Valentine set to add some spark to the hospitality industry this month, why limit ourselves to a mere one celebration per year? There are about a dozen Saint Valentines on the books (it was a popular name from the second to eighth centuries AD). We could go for St. Valentine of Viterbo on November 3, St. Valentine of Raetia on January 7 or the only lady St Valentine (Valentina) on July 25.

4. St. Polycarp’s Day

February 23 Talking of useful saints, Polycarp is your port of call should you ever have earache or dysentery. Not the most glamorous of patronages, but someone’s got to do it.

5. St. Helena’s Day


May 21 Old Helena began life as an innkeeper or stable maid but gave birth to a future emperor. She is not, however, the patron of prodigious offspring, oh no. Having been divorced by her bounder of a husband, she is remembered as the patron saint of difficult marriages and divorcees. Life’s a bitch.

6. Benedict of Nursia’s Day

July 11 What do you fancy celebrating on this day? Take your pick – this chap is the patron saint of farmers, civil engineers, architects, cavers, schoolchildren, dying people, monks…

7. St. Augustine of Hippo’s Day

August 28 Augustine makes the list as the patron saint of brewers. To be fair he’s not the only one but, having got the gig due to his conversion from a life of wild partying and loose living, he’s definitely our favourite.

8. Saint Denis’ Day

October 9 As a bunch of people who spend a lot of time in the pub it is fair to say sometimes we wake up with a little pain in the temples. So this is our guy, St Denis, the patron saint of headaches, who suffered the mother of all migraines when he was beheaded with a sword. Pass the Nurofen, please.

9. Martin de Porres Day

November 3 This is our man in heaven, our dude, our key to the pearly gates: Saint Martin, patron saint of innkeepers. He wasn’t exactly what you’d expect to represent us in eternal paradise, with his austere lifestyle and vegetarian diet, but he also represents hair stylists, so at least we’ll have a good barnet in the hereafter.

10. Saint Ambrose’s Day

December 7 Legend has it that a swarm of bees landed on baby Ambrose’s face one day as he lay in his crib, leaving behind a drop of honey. The episode means that Ambrose is now the patron saint of beekeepers and bees, as well as candle makers and wax refiners but also, erm, the French Commissariat. We don’t know what that has to do with bees either.

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time at the bar

YOUR ROUND Got something to say? Share your thoughts with the trade here Last month we asked: How do we solve the chef shortage crisis?

Tweets of the Month @hughwrites To add to @inapub chef shortage discourse — too much choice for chefs & restos can’t afford extortionate recruiter agency fees PubistheHub Lovely “Famous for libraries” feature in @inapub from @ MatthewEley in Jan issue feat @LibraryCornwall ItsBetterDownThePub Take a look @inapub’s guide to 16 of the best golden #beers on the market — is your favourite on the list? @stonojor Please hit me if I ever insist on half-pints in a stemmed glass Phoenix ABC Congratulations to @inapub for their 50th issue this month


Issue 50 January 2016 £3.95

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Dear Editor As a 706/1-2 qualified chef of 40 years’ experience, I now find myself privileged to be running my own pub with my wife, giving me the chance to prove myself or otherwise fall from grace. Independently chef-run pubs and restaurants have the right to prep and cook how they see fit for and if they want to do everything from raw materials that’s up to them, but don’t expect someone from a chain to have any skills in raw meat, fish or sauce-making. Large group-owned outlets invest fortunes in the likes of Bidvest and other suppliers to create cost-effective, minimal-handling, ready-made products that don’t need the best chefs. This sends out a good-quality meal that can be repeated in any of their outlets — all costed with full spec for service. Where the skilled 706 chef comes into

Dear Editor Reading your latest issue of Inapub (issue 50) 50 things that make a pub great #6 landlords! A bit sexist! What about us landladies? I am the landlady of the Cumberland Arms in Bishop Auckland and I have a fantastic relationship with all my customers old or new, regular or visitor. A very disgruntled LANDLADY. Marie Flory The Cumberland Arms Bishop’s Stortford, Hertfordshire

Editor Matt Eley replies: We meant no offence and were trying to use landlord as a term to cover all – much like “manager” or “actor”. You are of course right, there are brilliant landladies (and landlords) up and down the country and we do our best to feature them in Inapub.

Email your views to or tweet @inapub

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Dear Editor I don’t think it’s training, and I agree that food is “sexy” right now. I think the problem is that cheffing, particularly just everyday cheffing, isn’t sexy. The hours are antisocial and the pay is pretty crap. You work while all your mates are out partying, or on the beach, or on holiday, and kids today just don’t want to do that. I don’t know how to solve the problem I’m afraid, but that’s my view from 20+ years in the industry. Sara Smith Saint Laurent Jersey, Channel Islands

play is taking these products and fine-tuning them to change OK into great food. The chef can do a reduction of wine and herbs, adding a readymade sauce with butter to create a classic sauce. These are the skills that can be passed on. How to French trim a best end is not as important as how to cost a dish. How to cook it just pink is a skill. Ready-made, French trimmed best end is easier to cost as well. The mobile phone is here to stay and so is ready-made food. Progress is inevitable, skills in all industry will be lost but there is always room for creativity. Tony Gill The Greatham Inn Greatham, Hampshire

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27/01/2016 02:16

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26/01/2016 12:09

time at the bar

HAIR OF THE DOG Tales of the unexpected from the wonderful world of pubs

n pub, we yssey to visit every Red Lio Following Cathy Price’s od attempting is o wh s, les Ca n blogger Kit bring you news of Londo land. therspoon carpets in the to document all the JD We £20 en we bespoke and cost bet ‘Spoon’s carpets are all be said st mu it y, alit ying design qu and £30k a pop, with var on some s eye r you st fea to account — check out Kit’s Tumblr sta ut ins uldn’t have to worry abo of the beauties. You wo them, either. showing up on some of Frankly, we’re floored by the brilliance of the idea and just swept up in disappointment that we didn’t come up with it — after all, everyone loves a good shag(pile), don’t they?

Bitter and twisted You know the sort of customer who likes to order a lime and soda, then hogs an entire table for the rest of the afternoon? Well, one of their ilk got their comeuppance following a visit to Bennett’s Café & Bistro in York last month. The customer, “Hannah C”, left a scathing review on TripAdvisor after paying £2 for a hot water and lemon left her sour-faced. The manager hit back with a lesson in hospitality economics, pointing out overheads are where the costs ramp up. The spat went viral and divided Twitter opinion but it got us thinking about some of the more confused customer complaints: steaks that are “medium-well” instead of “medium-medium”; guests who are “very allergic” to gluten asking for more bread; ice-cream that’s too cold — do let us know some of your favourites.

58 FEBRUARY 2016

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Irish drinkers fancy a half An Irish pub has found success serving half measures — with glasses that look exactly like a pint glass cut in half. Staff at the Simon Lambert & Sons pub in Wexford, Ireland, have been serving half-pints in the quirky glasses since the beginning of the year, but when someone posted a picture of the unusual vessel on the pub’s Facebook page it went viral. Business has boomed ever since but there’s a problem — all but one of the glasses have been half-inched by pilfering customers. Guess the glass isn’t half-full after all.

Simon Lambert & Sons

n’s shags Carpet-bagger blogs ’spoo

Blackcock blocked for fowl language

Just before Chris tmas a country pub in the heart Brecon Beacon of the s had its Facebo ok page suspen because of “racis ded t or offensive lang uage”. It wasn’t of a disgruntled the fault punter leaving an expletive-ridden though, but due tirade, to the name of th e joint: The Blac Manager Lee Ga kcock Inn. rrett hit back, po inting out the pu the name since b has had 1840. “I know it’s a rubbish name,” The Independen he told t. “It’s a black cockerel , you know. Up the ro ad there’s a place ca lled the Three Cocks — there’s a lot of co ckbased names in this area, that’s just the kind of place it is. ” What, fowlmouthed? 27/01/2016 02:27

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27/01/2016 02:32

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