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End of year round-up

Yes it's our infamous end of year round up where we look back at the year and reflect on all things that have happened in the industry and review how accurate we were with our predictions for the year. Shall we just take it as read that we were way off with our predictions? To say 2020 was challenging would be an understatement,. It seemed at times we were randomly quoting Oasis songs. Phrases like 'Roll with it' and 'definitely maybe' were becoming common place! However we are a positive bunch at Wales Ales HQ so we're simply going to reflect on all the great things that have happened, and there's been a good few.

Due to being a family business when the original lockdown happened we didn't know if we could continue as we have young children, but a good bit of juggling about meant we enjoyed quality time with the children whilst reducing our delivery route to focus locally. We still managed to be innovative and support the industry as much as possible. We increased our craft beer offerings with some stock from the likes of Polly's, Tenby & Dog's Window flying out in record time and built strong relationships with the likes of Mumbles, Glamorgan and Rhymney. We became the mini-keg kings and started writing beer reviews for Buddy magazine (as well as West Wales Chronicle and Llanelli Standard) in order to shine some positivity and promote a number of breweries.


Our Beer Club really took off, something we've been doing for a while but not really focussed on. To put into context since the pandemic the membership has grown by 700%! We've enjoyed doing the monthly themes and added additional benefits of amazing wooden coasters made by one of the beer club members and fantastic retro badges by the very talented Crafty Badgers. They say that recommendation is the best form of advertising and there's some customers who we really should be giving commission too! Clearly we're doing something right, it helps when you have quality products from the likes of Dog's Window, Railmill and Tinworks to name a few,


We've also revisited the Grow your own Beer packs after a customer showed us their success from the first batch of seeds we did a couple of years ago. Keeping with our ethos we've sourced hop seeds from Wales based Just Seeds.


We rounded off the year with our Legendary 12 Beers of Christmas packs, we could have done without the latest restrictions which caused us to yet again roll with it but we're all in the same boat and it gave us a great opportunity to add to our collaboration range. We've previously done collaborations with Ollie's, Zepto and Dog's Window but with Ollie's no more and Zepto on hold we approached Cardiff based Rival Brewery to do a fruity pale ale, Tis' the season to be cherry which has been very well received getting great ratings on Untappd and great feedback from customers, maybe something that won't be just for Christmas?


Rather than end with our usual predictions for the New Year we'll simply end with a light-hearted look at what we've learned whilst delivering during the pandemic -


🍺 Swing down doors landing on your head hurts

🍻 Mini kegs landing on your foot hurts

🍺 Walking into tree branches and bushes also hurts

🍻 There are large Emu type birds wandering around Cowbridge

🍺 They say never meet your heroes as you'll be disappointed - not true, a rugby legend has become a regular customer and he's charming and so is his wife

🍻 To think years ago when I was speaking to publicans and breweries about delivering beers to people's houses I was met with confused blank looks - I was simply a trend setter ahead of my time and didn't know it lol

🍺 Making mini keg pyramids is fun

🍻 You can use your garden covered in children's toys for beer photos if you find the right angel

🍺 And last but not least, our customers are wonderful! Thank you for all your support during this challenging time, we hope we've made life a little bit easier for you and brought a smile to your faces.


We're the original Welsh beer delivery service and will continue to showcase the best ales from Wales and deliver to your doorstep, we can't thank you enough, not only are you supporting us but you're also supporting other businesses we stock. So 'don't look back in anger', stay strong, stay safe and we'll see you in 2021.


Neil

Wales Ales Co


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