Craft Beer Training for Bars, Restaurants


There’s no denying it — beer makes guests happy! Your selection of beer can both bring in new guests and create guest loyalty. Even if you have a modest craft beer selection, you could be sabotaging yourself if your staff isn’t prepared to answer guests’ craft beer questions. With thousands of craft beers out there, there’s no way servers can know first-hand the taste and aroma of every single one. But, your craft beer training program can cover general product knowledge, including the different styles of beer you offer. When servers and bartenders understand craft beer styles, they’ll know which beers to recommend to their guests and which foods to recommend along with them.

When beginning your craft beer training, start with the basics. Almost all craft beer falls into one of two categories: ales and lagers. The difference between the two, in simplest terms, is the type of yeast used to brew the beer. Ales use top-fermenting yeast, while lagers use bottom-fermenting yeast.

Play a game with servers during your craft beer training session to help servers remember the different types of craft beer offered in your restaurant. From there, make sure your servers learn mouth-watering descriptions of each of your craft beers, as well as the best foods to pair with each one.

Product Knowledge Craft Beer Training

Product knowledge is critical for craft beer sales. Teach the Four Ps of craft beer product knowledge:

  • Portion – What beer sizes do you offer? Train servers to suggest the larger size. “The pilsner is an excellent choice and will go great with your blackened tilapia. Our 22-ounce pilsner is a great value, can I get you started with that?”
  • Preparation – How is the beer made? Train servers to focus on the flavor of each beer type: “Our red ale is refreshing with a mild bitterness. Perfect on a hot day like today!”
  • Presentation – What does the beer look like? When your servers can accurately describe the beer, they’ll create interest and sales: “Our wheat beer is light and hoppy, served with an orange wedge to enhance the flavor.”
  • Price – It goes without saying that your servers should be well-versed in the prices of your craft beers. Remember, customers can’t buy what they don’t know!

Restaurant Service and Sales Training

The Service & Sales Excellence Waitstaff Training Series is based on Service That Sells!, a restaurant training philosophy developed by restaurant owners for restaurant owners. Click here to learn more.

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