The Tasting Panel magazine

August 2014

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Page 68 of 117

august 2014  /  the tasting panel  /  67 PHOTO: COURTESY OF HEINEKEN USA Although this system sounds complex on paper, it is a rather ingeniously simple system that rids bars and restaurants of the burden of mixed gases or CO2, and it also ensures that a beer maintains the correct amount of carbonation as it's served. When tested, its yield hits almost 100 percent and reduces draught-system failures by about 50 percent. That's what we call a win for everyone. Two and a half years into development, BrewLock debuted in 30 accounts in the Hartford, Connecticut area. In these test markets, Heineken proved that the system could run alongside traditional draught lines and there was little hassle in installation—the entire process clocked in at about half an hour and only required that a bar have a standard electrical socket. During this test launch, BrewLock was in an almost stealth mode—the brewery did no consumer education and no POS materials were doled out. Even without Heineken shouting from the rooftops, word got around about the innovation thanks to the men and women behind the bar, who became the biggest advocates for the system. It gave them something new and exciting to explain to patrons. It also encouraged patrons to order a pint of Heineken, a beer that historically sells better in bottles in the U.S. Along with increasing sales by an average of 10 percent at these locations, the system received very favorable feedback from everyone who tried it. Patrick Libonate, On-Premise Commercial Marketing Director for HEINEKEN USA, explains, "Since it never touches mixed gases or the air, it really locks in flavor, making it a perfect capsule to move beer in. We heard from a lot of people—espe- cially ones who have tried Heineken in Amsterdam—that 'this is what beer is supposed to taste like.'" Launching Heineken in BrewLock nationally three months ago and in Newcastle Brown Ale this past month, this time around HEINEKEN USA focused on creating tools—including plenty of POS materials and an instructional website complete with videos on the system—for bartenders and their sales teams to utilize when teaching customers about the system. So where does BrewLock go from here? Guess we will just have to wait and see, but for now, we will be ordering our Heineken on draught. Please and thank you. An inside look of BrewLock as beer is served. PHOTO: COURTESY OF HEINEKEN USA PHOTO: COURTESY OF HEINEKEN USA Patrick Libonate, On-Premise Commercial Marketing Director for HEINEKEN USA.

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