Q and A

Matthew Q&A | Beers of Europe Staff

Matthew Q&A | Beers of Europe Staff
Originally Posted on Mar 11, 2016

Regular readers might be aware that we have been chatting to various Breweries as a way of getting to know the people that brew the beers you love.  For today’s Q&A, we thought we would introduce you to Matthew. If you’re curious to know about the people behind the scenes and those that help us to run our business, read on!

Who are you and what do you do?   Hello, I’m Matthew. I’m 21 and you can find me manning the counter at Beers of Europe. Alternatively you may interact with me over email or over the phones as I mainly deal with customer service. I am also firmly in charge of jobs no one else wants to do.

When did you join Beers of Europe?   I joined late 2012 as a Christmas temp and they never managed to get rid of me. I continued part-time until May 2015 when I became a full time member of staff, free to risk the company’s reputation on a daily basis.

How did you get involved in with Beers of Europe?   I saw an advert for the job while I was at the hairdressers which led to my application. My dad has been coming to the shop since it opened so he was delighted that working there meant more visits.

What is your favourite beer, wine, spirit or alcohol?   It is probably easier to list the products I don’t like than my favourite, so I will shortlist a couple of stand out drinks. The Berentzen Apfelkorn is always a product I have at home along with a few bottles of Sheppys or Innis and Gunn. The Berentzen was recommended to me within my first couple of months of working here and is one of only a few recommendations from customers that I appreciated at the time and still appreciate today. A bottle of the Falstaff or the Oakwood Cider is perfect after a hard day pretending to work and my dad’s favourite is a bottle of Innis and Gunn’s Spiced Rum Finish so we always have that at home.

What do you think makes a great beer?   The craft scene is growing at an incredible rate across the world and some of the drinks they are producing are new and creative but also a pleasure to drink and I enjoy recommending beers to customers that they have never had before. On the other end of the spectrum you have continental beers from Germany and Belgium that have been brewed the same way for centuries and are still considered the best in the world today. It is a testament to the brewers behind the beer that put as much or as little as possible into the beers to create our favourites. And that is why the brewers are the key to making a great beer.

What was your first drink and where were you when you had it?   I cannot remember my first drink but if I were to make it up, it would be in the local Weatherspoons with my family on the night of my 18th birthday. The more likely scenario is an alcopop or 5 in a friend’s garden during my high school years and probably throwing them back up but I cannot confirm that.

Is there any beer or drink out there that you haven’t tried but would love to?   Dogfish Head is a brewery that we get asked about almost daily for. They stopped exporting from the US in 2012 as the demand is too high for their volume of production (so stop asking for it!) but it is one of the bosses favourites and I would love to try it if I ever went over to America. The 90 minute IPA is supposed to be one of the best in the world. In Belgium, Westvleteren is highly sought after and is almost impossible to find in the UK. I would love to visit the monastery myself but I don’t have the patience to wait a year for an appointment.

What is your favourite style of beer?   I couldn’t pick a favourite although in store I work with the German Beers a lot, so I often recommend beers like Augustiner Lagerbier or the Oktoberfests to customers as well as buying them for friends. One of my favourites to recommend is the Pot Kettle Black, by the Yeastie Boys, a New Zealand Brewer as it calls itself a South Pacific Porter but it is so complex that you could call it a stout or a black IPA, really worth a try. Along the IPA line Thornbridge Jaipur is a beer that is probably one of the best the UK has to offer along with Brewdog’s genius creations.

Which do you prefer, bottled or canned?   Completely depends on the time of year personally. You will not catch me with a can in winter but in the summer it is a winner at BBQ’s or festivals, many of which will not accept bottles to be brought in. At Beers of Europe we are leaning towards getting a larger canned selection which sees Redwell join our ranks and a range of American craft beers such as Firestone Walker.

What is your favourite part of the job?   If I am not allowed to keep staff discount as an answe, then the part I most enjoy is spending time with a lovely group of people that keep this company running. You couldn’t ask for better colleagues.

Thanks to Matt for taking part!  We hope you enjoyed finding out a little more about him. Don’t forget to say hello should you be visiting the shop!