NEW MICROBREWERY - BEER STATION

Here is where we drink and tell. Whether its a new drinking hole or new beer, tell us your opinions and recommendations. Lets not forget about food pairing too. Anything to help soothe another pint down the throat.

Re: NEW MICROBREWERY - BEER STATION

Postby Harry » 03 Aug 2008, 13:36

I visited this place just last night and gosh, the business is real slow. It's a sat night for goodness sake and it is like perhaps about 10 people. Tried their food and beer combo, reasonably priced. Service is quite good as well.

I saw the comments you guys made abt the place and still wanted to take a look myself. I don't quite agree that the beer has poor head and that heineken tastes better. It is very light with little aroma that's true but I feel the comments you guys made have been pretty harsh. A matter of personal preference perhaps.

Went into their brewing room for a walk and spoke to the operations manager (who incidentally will be leaving tt place soooon). Heard from him that the brewmaster, the owners and himself visited and worked with all the microbreweries in Singapore before setting up their own. I was also told that the brewmaster was 'quite offended' with Ernest's Czech Pilsner because apparently it is 'not supposed to taste that way'. I visited Ernest's place before. Nice setting, good price for drinks, food I find it a little steep and service, sad to say, exceptionally poor. I booked a table for 6 and when I arrived, the waitress said there was no booking done. Ok, never mind. I ordered a vegetarian pasta and they sent me the crabmeat pasta which I only realised after I took a munch. Imagine if I am a strict vegetarian (which luckily I am not), the service crew will need to do a lot of explanations.

Ok, back to the beer station. Nice chat with the manager, sincere fellow. Did feedback to him abt what i felt abt the beer. And here's the surprising thing: I was told that numerous feedback were made to the owners abt their beer but the owners insisted that their Czech beer 'is supposed to be like this'. I nv visited Czech republic before and I don't think I am in a fair position to comment abt that. But he got the impression that the 'ibrew people hate that place very much', which I guess he got the idea from reading this forum.

Sad to say, I don't think the place can sustain itself unless their business improves significantly.
User avatar
Harry
 
Posts: 48
Joined: 27 Jun 2008, 14:15

Re: NEW MICROBREWERY - BEER STATION

Postby keat » 03 Aug 2008, 14:37

I've never been to Czech before either, but I've tasted the Czech Pilsener Urquell, which is the famous Czech pilsener. Their beer doesn't even come close.
Maybe their beers have improved since the last time we were there, but it was a turn off to be charged a flat fee and have to take bad service and bad beer (yes I had bad service in beer station - lady in the front was too busy collecting $$$, just collect and leave you to figure out where to go, what to do...Bartender is more interested in serving certain customers more than others - but thats my experience). I guess the amount of crowd there on a Sat night speak volumes. I don't think we were too harsh with the comments.
On Tap:Nil
Coming up: German Blonde
In fond memories: The Pursuit of Hoppyness (IBC 2007 Gold) -- Cheap Bastard Ale (IBC 2008 Gold) -- Cheap Bastard Ale III (Asia Beer Awards 2008 Gold)
User avatar
keat
 
Posts: 1081
Joined: 26 Apr 2005, 08:34

Re: NEW MICROBREWERY - BEER STATION

Postby Harry » 03 Aug 2008, 17:12

keat wrote:I've never been to Czech before either, but I've tasted the Czech Pilsener Urquell, which is the famous Czech pilsener. Their beer doesn't even come close.
Maybe their beers have improved since the last time we were there, but it was a turn off to be charged a flat fee and have to take bad service and bad beer (yes I had bad service in beer station - lady in the front was too busy collecting $$$, just collect and leave you to figure out where to go, what to do...Bartender is more interested in serving certain customers more than others - but thats my experience). I guess the amount of crowd there on a Sat night speak volumes. I don't think we were too harsh with the comments.


Maybe part of the reason that i get pretty good service is because of the lack of crowd. It's a possibility. I don't find the place and food awful. The beer is definitely not as great as other microbreweries but still drinkable for me. I guess part of the problem may be the owners' insisting that their beer needs no improvement (by saying it is 'supposed to be tt way', it is as if saying we do not know how to appreciate their beer).

My personal opinion is that their location might be a problem itself. The food stalls around them sell food and commercial beers much cheaper than them. Price wise, though reasonable (a meal plus a beer at other microbreweries can easily cost double), is still not competitive with their neighbours. I find it quite a waste seriously. If the owners really wan the place to be a success, they shd take feedback more seriously. Their idea is good but they haven't seem to take it work yet.

I shall be inviting some friends to visit that place before well... put it bluntly, before it's not there anymore.
User avatar
Harry
 
Posts: 48
Joined: 27 Jun 2008, 14:15

Re: NEW MICROBREWERY - BEER STATION

Postby Hunty » 04 Aug 2008, 08:01

My personal opinion is that their location might be a problem itself. The food stalls around them sell food and commercial beers much cheaper than them.


I'm afraid I have not had a chance to visit the Beer Station, so am unable to comment first hand. But it seems from the comments above they will find it difficult to compete on price, so that means they have to stand out on quality. Anybody can go and buy a commercial beer anywhere, lets face it, to many people out there beer is just a commodity. I think the idea of a microbrewery is to differentiate the product and make it worth the extra bucks. If the Beer station can't do this, then by definition its going to be a tough run.

What I have heard though is that this brewery is an extract brewery, ie a mix and pitch setup. IMHO this is where some of the problems in taste and character I have read could be coming from, it is very difficult to make an extract beer taste as good a a beer made from the ground up (ie all grain), no matter how good the process is.

Still, I have to reserve judgement till I try it for myself, however as you may be able to tell, I respect the views of my fellow brewers so it has not exactly been a priority.. ;)

Hunty


P.S Just a comment on service, I think a common problem in Singapore is retaining good part time or casually employed service staff, its hit and miss, and whether or not the restaurant is lucky enough to have experienced or good staff at the time you are there. I've had great and poor service at Brewerkz, Red Dot and the Pump Room, it just depends on the day and the luck of the draw. I know its as irritating as hell when you get a bad day but what can you do.... if you get a chance to speak to any of the owners or managers they'll tell you the same story, the staff are transient, mostly students employed casually who show up when they feel like it or move on the next higher paying job as soon as its offered...
The Power of Positive Drinking
Image
Hunty
 
Posts: 2170
Joined: 25 Apr 2005, 19:51

Re: NEW MICROBREWERY - BEER STATION

Postby keat » 04 Aug 2008, 10:13

Hunty wrote:
P.S Just a comment on service, I think a common problem in Singapore is retaining good part time or casually employed service staff, its hit and miss, and whether or not the restaurant is lucky enough to have experienced or good staff at the time you are there. I've had great and poor service at Brewerkz, Red Dot and the Pump Room, it just depends on the day and the luck of the draw. I know its as irritating as hell when you get a bad day but what can you do.... if you get a chance to speak to any of the owners or managers they'll tell you the same story, the staff are transient, mostly students employed casually who show up when they feel like it or move on the next higher paying job as soon as its offered...


sidetrack from the main topic: Yes agree with your observation on most places I've been. But then you have to ask, why are the restaurants hiring transients? Are they making full use of the flat 10% service charge to reward the staff and attract the more dedicated ones... ? I've worked at restaurants and hotels during my school days, and most of the time, we don't see the "service charge" imposed by the employer on the customers. The employer just pay a flat monthly salary and usually at a very low rate, not much incentive to work hard.

I've been to restaurants where I got top-notch service and food, and these are not the pricy fine dining ones. These are the ones that will be high in my priority list to go back to.
On Tap:Nil
Coming up: German Blonde
In fond memories: The Pursuit of Hoppyness (IBC 2007 Gold) -- Cheap Bastard Ale (IBC 2008 Gold) -- Cheap Bastard Ale III (Asia Beer Awards 2008 Gold)
User avatar
keat
 
Posts: 1081
Joined: 26 Apr 2005, 08:34

Re: NEW MICROBREWERY - BEER STATION

Postby Hunty » 05 Aug 2008, 08:08

But then you have to ask, why are the restaurants hiring transients?


well I guess its just economics, and only select staff would be full time. There's a huge difference in labour costs and committments between full time and casual labour. The student casual labour availability fits in well with the busiest hours these places run at which is in the evenings. I think you are dead right on the incentive part... and as for the service charge thing, it cracks me up every time. Thats just a another part of the "plus plus " standard here.... just part of the price and separated to make the basic prices appear lower. $19.95 sounds alot cheaper than $21.91 ;) LOL
The Power of Positive Drinking
Image
Hunty
 
Posts: 2170
Joined: 25 Apr 2005, 19:51

Previous

Return to Beer Tasting and Food



Who is online

Users browsing this forum: No registered users and 12 guests

cron