The Shout Magazine (New Zealand)

Spotlight on a local: The Beer Spot Whangaparoa

During 2020, we featured a local bar, pub or club every week to help boost the Kiwi hospitality industry and encourage customers to get out and explore!

Here, former school principal turned tavern owner Ben Kelsey shares an insight into The Beer Spot Whangaparoa.

How has business been going during this tough year?
Business has been going great. We opened at the end of June after the first round of lockdowns. We have had amazing support from our local Coastie community and The Beer Spot fanatics.

What have you been doing to encourage customers to come back to your local?
We have hired local people, supported local charities and schools and tried hard to promote ourselves through local media. As we are a new The Beer Spot we still have many new locals coming in to check us out and get a feel for great beer and wine. Over the last lockdown, people were ordering and collecting our 750ml pressure purged puppies (bottles) to take home and enjoy. This was a great way to continue to connect with our local customers.

How would you describe the atmosphere of The Beer Spot?
We have warm, welcoming, friendly staff who are able to talk you through our Tap 40 wall of New Zealand beer and wine. Our expansive deck has views of the bays and beaches off the Whangaparaoa coast.

What is your signature drink?
With both 42 taps of rotating NZ beer and wine, all of our drinks are popular. When a keg or box of wine runs out, a new product is put on tap. This continually highlights the amazing beer and wine we have in New Zealand.

Why do you think your local stands out from the crowd?
We are something new to the Coast but have four other branches all over Auckland. We have a warm, modern and clean environment with an expansive balcony and an amazing sea view. Our flagship branch opened in Northcote four years ago, followed by Huapai,  Morningside, Panmure then ourselves. We prefer to use the term “Great Beer” rather than craft. There is a real hunger for great beer in NZ at the moment. We are looking forward to the first The Beer Festival on November 6 and 7 at The Cloud in Auckland City. Every week we have a rotating food truck. This means we have a new chef, menu and restaurant every Monday.

What are your 3 top tips for being a great bartender?
1 – Love thy peeps! Get to know your community. Make people feel welcome and part of The Beer Spot family. This is what attracted us to The Beer Spot in the first place.
2 – Know your Beersies / Winesies – People love it when you can tell a story about the beer or wine, where it has come from, people who have brewed or created the product.
3 – Being able to sample product with customers to find a beverage that meets their tastes. People love a sample and a chat at our Tap 40 wall.

To nominate a local to be featured, email or send us a message on social media @theshoutnz!

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