News > Business

‘Beer can be a sales driver for restaurants,’ says Master Beer Sommelier

By Luke Nicholls , 25-Nov-2011

Related topics: Business, People, Restaurants, Pubs & Bars

Master Beer Sommelier Mark Stroobandt believes restaurants across the UK ‘aren’t giving beer the respect it deserves’ and has given his top tips of beer and food matching to increase a business's footfall.

According to Stroobandt, beer is being taken for granted by many restaurants

According to Stroobandt, beer is being taken for granted by many restaurants

Speaking at Restaurant magazine’s R200 Awards on Wednesday, Stroobandt, who currently works for the F&B partnership, stated that beer can be a sales driver and that all a restaurant has to do is talk about it.

“For a lot of restaurants, beer is paying the bills but it is being taken for granted,” he said. “Beer stimulates the appetite and this is where potential lies for everyone. It can drive your food sales and even your wine sales – all you have to do is start telling your customers about it.

Top tips

  • “It’s simple: there are no rules, anything goes. There are so many beers around, but the key thing is to enhance your customers’ experience.
  • “Don’t overpower the food with beer or vice versa. One thing beer has above wine is its refreshment. It can cleanse your pallet, which wine struggles to achieve. So beer must add to your dish.
  • “Think of it as a condiment, that little dressing on the side. Generally, Indian food works with Indian beer and English food works with English beer. But English beer can also wiork with exotic food and vice versa.
  • “It’s also about the ingredients. Beer that has coriander in generally goes well with Indian and Thai food.

Talk about it

Belgian-born Stroobandt went on to state that the first rule of food and beer matching is ‘talking about it.’

He added: “I will tell you what the most powerful and effective sales technique in the world is: ‘would you like to have one?’ It’s not rocket science. A stat from a recent report I read said that 89 per cent of consumers will buy based on personal recommendations. But the flip side was that only eight per cent of them were ever given one. So you see where the problems lie.

Hotels like Malmaison and Hotel du Vin will provide customers with beer options while they are waiting for their table. That’s clever operating – and they sell a lot of beer.

“We are all starting to have problems with footfall. If we do not start delivering new experiences – and beer can do just that – customers will go somewhere else.”

BigHighlights

Top 10 things to do and see at Hotelympia 2014

Top 10 things to do and see at Hotelympia 2014

Hotelympia is fast approaching and the hospitality industry getting ready to descend on the ExCel centre in...

Roux Scholarship 2014: In Pictures

Roux Scholarship 2014: In Pictures

Tom Barnes, sous chef at Simon Rogan’s two-Michelin-starred L’Enclume in Cartmel, has won the 2014 Roux Scholarship....

National Restaurateurs’ Dinner 2014: in pictures

National Restaurateurs’ Dinner 2014: in pictures

The 27th National Restaurateurs’ Dinner (NRD) took place at the Dorchester on Tuesday, helping raise over £80,000 for...

Travellers’ Choice: Top 10 UK tourism hotspots

Travellers’ Choice: Top 10 UK tourism hotspots

London is the third-best travel destination in the world, according to TripAdvisor’s sixth annual Travellers’ Choice awards...

#AskMark: Our inspiring Twitter Q&A with Mark Sargeant reviewed

#AskMark: Our inspiring Twitter Q&A with Mark Sargeant reviewed

Whether it was his advice for young chefs, his memories of working with Gordon Ramsay or his...

Business Profile: Ping Pong

Business Profile: Ping Pong

Ping Pong’s change-of-location strategy and design brief move it a step closer to bringing dim sum to...

Find us on Facebook

Digital Edition - Restaurant Magazine

Access to the Restaurant Magazine digital edition