Apply the Stella Artois pouring ritual to offer a superior beer experience
Luke Morris, the Stella Artois quality expert, says: "The pouring ritual starts with preparation. When customers walk into an outlet, they should see a properly set up skimming station. They should be able to watch the skimming taking place. Position the drip tray and Stella Artois branded skimmer in a spot that customers can see, but that is also convenient for you to reach when you pour.
Champion is the second step, meaning that you either recommend Stella Artois to your customers – and at the same time explain to them why it is a good choice – or that you congratulate customers who have ordered Stella Artois on a choice well made.
Pour and skim
Use a chalice, which keeps the Stella Artois cooler for longer through the stem design, and promotes better head retention. Hold the glass at 45° and let the beer pour itself, allowing the head to build naturally and ensuring that the logo faces the customer. When you place the glass on the drip bar, take the skimmer, flick off the excess water and skim the head of the beer. Present the glass with the logo facing the customer.
Do's and don'ts
What you should and should not do when pouring a beer
The use of glass
Use a clean, undamaged glass for every order and hold it at the base during pouring, avoiding contact with the brim. Never refill a used glass: bacteria from a customer’s saliva will be passed to the tap spout and a used glass suppresses the release of gas bubbles. To avoid fobbing, never use warm glasses straight from the glass washer.
Facts & figures
Stella Artois served from a Chalice may increase sales by 7.3%
Stella Artois, the UK's favourite premium beer brand¹, will be focusing the on trade's attention on the importance of a perfectly poured and presented Stella Artois Chalice throughout 2013. Research shows that Stella Artois served from a Chalice may increase sales by 7.3% for experience, taste and temperature reasons². Also, it increases consumers' ‘willingness to pay more’ by 67% and increases their 'perception of high quality’ by 20%³.
¹ Synovate 06-2014, ² AB InBev Holly Data 2011, ³ Synovate BPT Tracker August 2012
'There is no doubt that Stella Artois is best served through the pouring ritual'
Start a dialogue
In September 2011, Mark Simmonite, manager at Henry’s in Sheffield, won the Stella Artois UK Draught Master Final and went on to the World Draught Masters in Buenos Aires. The pouring ritual offers his team an opportunity to start a dialogue with customers and demonstrate their passion for good customer service.
Mark feels that to entice people to go out more, outlets should offer an environment where the customer feels special, safe and cared for. The pouring ritual is a way to do that. “There is no doubt that Stella Artois is best served through the pouring ritual. We have seen sales soar, and we regularly receive compliments.”
Users of the pouring ritual are enthusiastic. “It makes the pint look much neater. I like using the skimmer; it looks pretty sharp!” says a staff member of The Folly in
Selected bars receive the required tools to deliver the superior beer experience
Selected outlets are invited to join the Stella Artois Connoisseurs Programme. These are bars that are committed to quality, ranging from their drinks selection through to their high standards of customer service and bar staff training. The Stella Artois Connoisseurs Programme enables these outlets to provide this superior beer experience by giving them the tools required to deliver the experience and then, rewarding them for bringing the Stella Artois pouring ritual to life for the consumer.
The most important tools for the bartenders are the new Stella Artois skimmers, cups and drip trays which have been meticulously designed to signal to consumers that there is a beer available which is as discerning as they are. Bartenders delivery of the Stella Artois pouring ritual will be monitored by mystery shoppers. Those bars that perform all required steps of the Programme will be rewarded by Stella Artois in the form of a loaded Visa Debit reward card.
Committed to quality
Iain Newell, Marketing Director AB InBev UK said: "The Stella Artois Connoisseurs Programme is our opportunity to bring this quality experience alive in the on trade by rewarding those outlets and bar staff who are absolutely committed to quality. The focus and investment we are putting behind promoting the Stella Artois pouring ritual will create increased consumer demand which will benefit our customers."
10% sales increase
More than 1,000 discerning on trade outlets have now joined, giving over 5,000 members of bar staff across the UK the opportunity to enhance their skills and be trained in the art of delivering a perfectly poured Chalice of Stella Artois. Results from the programme to date, which launched in February 2013, have seen Stella Artois sales increase by approximately 13.8¹ in participating outlets.
¹ AB InBev sales data 2014
An example of an outlet that has already seen the benefits of adopting the Stella Artois pouring ritual is The Folly from Drake & Morgan. Taskin Mussaffer, Business Development Director said: “Our customers are passionate about our outlets because of the quality of experience they receive every time they walk through the door. We love that Stella Artois are as focused on the quality of experience as we are and can really see how much our customers appreciate receiving their Stella Artois perfectly poured and presented every time.”
» Visit the Stella Artois Connoisseurs Programme website
Stella Artois World Draught Master: a ‘quest for commitment and passion for perfection’
The best pour
Stella Artois World Draught Master is a ‘quest for commitment and passion for perfection’. This annual global contest aims to find the person who has best mastered the Stella Artois pouring ritual. The latest finals were held 2012 in Montreal, Canada.
Createurs de Beauté
At this annual event, established in 1997, bartenders from 24 countries from all over the world come together and compete to pour the perfect Stella Artois. They all aim to prove themselves ‘Createurs de Beauté’ – creators of beauty. The winner becomes the next Stella Artois brand ambassador.
2012 Draught Master
Last year's winner Allaine Schaiko says: "Maintaining the head by skimming is critical because the foam is where the slightly pronounced bitterness of Stella Artois comes to the forefront. If you lose the head, you change both the taste and sensorial experience of the product."