‘Haaaaaave you met’, shines a spotlight on the brewery owners, the brewers, venue managers, the beer pourers, the sales representatives, bottle shop workers and the beer drinkers of the SA craft beer industry. We will discover their inner secrets, find out what gets them out of bed in the morning and we might even unravel some exclusive news along the way. The hard questions have been asked, so you don’t have to. Enjoy!
Say hello to Ben Stevens, brand manager for Clare Valley Brewing Company. Ben joined the company at about the same time Clare Valley rebranded their logo and labelling. The CVBC logo can now be found in more hotels and pubs across SA and Australia thanks to Ben. Have a read and find out a little about him.
Q1. Who are you and how are you involved in the SA beer industry?
Brand Manager for CVBC; I have been in the role for about 6 months. However, I spent 5 years working for CUB in WA & previous to that was Operations Manager at a little brewery & bar in Fremantle called The Monk. I also have completed my general certificate in brewing from IBD.
Q2. What are some of the great moments you have had whilst being involved in this industry?
At CUB I worked on/with some pretty big brands – Carlton Draught, Matilda Bay, VB, Peroni – one of the more senior members of the marketing team used to say the brands we work with are iconic, we are just the custodians of them for the time being. Looking back, you take for granted at the time exactly what you are doing and the reputations of the brands but being part of their history if only for a little while certainly is humbling.
Q3. Predicting the future, what trends are coming in the near future for beer in Australia?
I’m probably not the best person to ask. When sours were starting to pop up, I said it would never be a thing and look how’s that going.
Q4. What is your favourite beer style and how did this come to be?
I don’t particularly have a favourite style, I’ll drink whatever tastes good although I do prefer big malty flavoured beers
Q5. Where is one place that you would love to see good beer served?
Anywhere and everywhere. I think it’s great that venues are now really starting to push back on the big brewers and have taken back ownership of their taps. It really gives consumers a great variety of choice and is great for local businesses.
Q6. Do you have any exciting news you can share with me? Maybe about future plans, collaborations or anything new?
Plenty happening at the moment, we have just added a summer to our bottle range as well as the introduction of some seasonal 500ml bottles hopefully by mid year. We also have plans sitting in front of council at the moment for a fully expanded venue/cellar door at the brewery in Sevenhill in conjunction with our sister winery, Jeanneret Wines.
Q7. What gets you out of bed in the morning?
I have a 2-year-old chocolate lab called Brady who is quite demanding in the morning to be fed and taken to the beach.
Q8. Do you dream about beer? If so, what is your most memorable dream about beer?
No I can’t really say I have – I don’t tend to remember any of my dreams though.
Q9. What is your favourite season for beer drinking? Why?
I don’t think there is a bad season for beer drinking is there? That being said, nothing beats a few beers with mates whilst watching the footy
Q10. If you could choose any profession, what would it be? Why?
A Firefighter. I had actually passed all the testing and was awaiting a call up in Melbourne before I had to pull out on contention and come back to Adelaide for family reasons.
That is quite an impressive background in beer; at least CVBC know that they always have a brewer in case of an emergency. Thanks Ben for answering my questions and hopefully next week we can continue with CVBC, by introducing Adrian to you all. Cheers!