So I guess to conclude on this topic, is this kind of thing something you’d recommend to another brand of your size in a different state?
Hmm. How do I answer that? It is absolutely a financial commitment. I look back on it as a great learning experience. I would recommend that any craft brewery that wants to talk about sports sponsorships negotiate. Make sure that when you talk through points on partnering you maximize everything that you get. That’s legitimately my number one piece of advice. There’s a lot of advertising and fun stuff that you can do, but at the end of the day, it comes down to how you can handle it as a company. If you have a one person marketing team and they handle all your plans for everything, well, it’s going to be a challenge because some stuff you’re just not going to be able to take part in. Then all of a sudden you’re paying for a sponsorship that you’re not able to maximize on. That would be my piece of advice.
I’ve got one more topic I want to touch on before I let you go and it’s taprooms. How many taprooms do you guys operate now?
We operate four taprooms now, including our Fat Point brand.
Can you tell me a little bit about how that expansion has gone, what you started with, and some best practices around running tap rooms?
We started in Pasco. We had a few hundred square feet of taproom space and quickly outgrew that. So, we expanded into the actual brewery, which was a pretty cool little set up. We still have that in our renovated Pasco Brewery where the taproom is inside the production area.
From an overall perspective, food is important for tap rooms. Coming from the time that I came from, we were all beer guys. At that time, nobody really cared about food. People were coming to try beers, they’d bring food in, or there’d be food trucks outside. But nowadays people want food because they want that enhanced experience. So, we added food in our Pinellas facility, we have food in our Fat Point facility, and we’re adding food to Pasco and Cape Coral. So, I think food is a critical piece.