I read Rob from HopZine’s latest blog about Quality Control and Compensation with quite a bit of interest, as I’ve had a lot of bad beer over the years, for all sorts of reasons. I’m as guilty as the next person to the British perversion of saying nothing and grumbling into my pint. I hate the uncertainty of taking a bad pint back, will the bar staff be open and apologetic and offer something else without argument, or I get the everyone else is drinking it and none of them have complained line from someone who doesn’t give a shit about the beer they’re selling or their reputation.
It can be doubly frustrating when you get a bad bottle though, as there’s no one to really take it back to and get a replacement there and then. I’ve had some disappointing beers that I’ve blogged and tweeted about and in a similar fashion to taking a pint back in a pub, I’ve had varying responses from those responsible for the beer in question.
In 2010 I drank a bottle of beer at home which had absolutely no condition, I blogged about it and a couple of days later there was a tweet from the brewer along the lines of, I’ve just had one and it was perfectly conditioned, I don’t understand why people are moaning. To be honest, I couldn’t care less if his bottle was perfectly conditioned, the bottles on sale in the Bacchanalia weren’t and I didn’t appreciate the inference that I was essentially a liar for claiming it was anything other than perfect. I wasn’t the only one who had a flat bottle either and that particular beer always comes up when I’m discussing that brewer with people.
— Bob Arnott (@RecentlyDrunk) June 5, 2012
Recently I tweeted about a beer I had from The Kernel that was just a touch on the lively side. I didn’t think much about it, these things happen, but Evin is obviously a man who cares deeply, not just about the beer he produces and the image of his brewery, but the satisfaction of his customers. I received a long email apologising for the bad bottle and explaining what the issue with it was, plus I received some beer in compensation. Not one or two bottles, not even three, but seven. Seven bottles of beer in unasked for compensation for one bad bottle.
Now ask yourself this; whose beer am I most likely to buy going forward? Beer from a brewery that’s calling into question what I’ve said and wont admit to a bad batch of bottles, or beer from a brewery that’s bent over backwards to apologise and make it up to me? It doesn’t take a genius to work out that I’ll be buying far more beer from The Kernel going forward, than from the double Champion Beer of Britain winner …
I’d just like to say a massive thank you to Evin and his team for their dedication to, not only producing the best beer they can, but to ensuring that their customers enjoy it in excellent condition. I look forward to trying many more beers from their new brewery in the future.