One always takes the smile on the person’s face who serves you beer at festivals for granted.
During the Pecanwood festival we had the opportunity to experience a festival from the other side of the taps and it was not nearly as glamorous as expected! In fact, there were a few times I felt like giving somebody a smack across the head.
What did we learn from this?
- DON’T criticize a brewers hand crafted beer within hearing distance! Not only is it rude, but you are running down the love and care and effort it took to produce the beer. Unless of course you are a certified beer judge. Even then be specific in your criticism with facts to support your statements. ‘AAARRG THIS TASTE LIKE SHIT!’ does not qualify as a valid criticism! We do give our personal commentary on the beer on our blog and we are not judges yet but from now on we’ll be more gentle! Brewers have feelings too!
- People go to Oktoberfests to get smashed and the quality and flavour make no difference! THE ABV DOES! The higher the alcohol levels, the better it sells! VERY FEW people actually know anything about craft beer whatsoever!
- It is not so easy to pour a beer with a modest head! It took us a while to be able to pour a beer with an acceptable head and many spoons of foam went into the bucket!
- You have to repeat yourself continually without sounding irritated! You have to explain the style, the brewing process, the flavours and why you don’t have Castle Light on tap over and over AND OVER AND OVER AGAIN! At Nine PM at night, I assure you, the listener will not remember or understand a word you are saying but you have to repeat the story WITH A SMILE ON YOUR FACE for the n-th time!
- Oompah bands are only cool if you have had a couple of cold ones! Being dead sober and having to listen to the same repertoire of songs over and over can become a bit much!
- The South African craft brewers are a band of brothers (and sisters) ! We experienced this first hand where brewers moved around behind the scenes, tasting each others beer and talking beer stuff!! Man were we privileged to be amongst them.
- Festivals should NOT mix hard alcohol with craft beer! It is a slap in the face of the craft brewers who spent a lot of time, effort and money to be at the festival only to loose customers to people like Klipdrift with more alcohol per volume than the craft beers ! Rather invite SA Breweries or Windhoek Breweries to such events.
We would like to thank Ruaan and Amanda of Chameleon Breweries for giving us the opportunity and trusting us to sell their beer!