We have been custodians of cask beer for 150 years. Keen to build on that tradition and the services we offer our customers, Adnams’ on-trade sales team got to grips with all things cask, with an in-depth quality training workshop in conjunction with Cask Marque.

The course was specially developed for Adnams, to provide participants with the skills and tools to navigate beer quality issues and offer training support to their customers. The tailored curriculum was commissioned by our Sales Director, Max Bond, who was keen to expand the team’s back-of-house knowledge:

“Our goal from the training was for every member of the Adnams on-trade sales team to have the skills and confidence to provide cask beer quality training for our customers and their teams, to help them maximise their cask yields, improve rate of sale and deliver the perfect pint of Adnams beer every time.”

The 15-strong team was introduced to invaluable insights, practical knowledge and real-world experiences in the training room as well as the cellar and bar of their host pub, The Maypole in Cambridge. The interactive workshop allowed them to apply theoretical concepts to real life scenarios, to foster a deeper understanding of real-life, day-to-day cellar operations.

They were left understanding the things that affect the quality of cask beer in the cellar and at the bar and knowing the correct way to condition cask beer in the cellar. They will now be able to offer advice on how to store, handle and dispense cask, as well as maintain a safe and hygienic cellar. In addition, they can now diagnose the reasons for issues and are able to address them or provide the appropriate support.

Their learning experience will extend beyond the training room, as the team will have access to ongoing training and resources, enabling them to support existing and new stockists of Adnams beers. If you have any questions, just ask!

The course content was designed and delivered by Cask Marque Head of Training Annabel Smith, Beer Academy Sommelier and certified WSET Beer Educator: “We developed the content to align with the stringent Cask Marque Bar and Cellar Hygiene audit and the beer quality assessment scoring criteria,” she said.

“There are unique challenges faced by publicans in the cask beer sector and support from suppliers is increasingly being sought. The curriculum was carefully designed to promote a deeper understanding of cask ale and the aspects that affect its quality in trade. Additionally, Adnams was keen to upskill their team on training techniques and how to address quality issues in a professional manner.”

Paul Nunny, Director of Cask Marque, was pleased about the focus now being placed on upskilling sales teams and providing them with the knowledge to support their cask stockists. “Good cellar practices and procedures deliver better yields and better-quality beer thus helping pub profitability. Education and training drive up standards that not only benefit the brand, but also the pub and its cask ale drinkers.

The training for our sales team follows last year’s development of our dray crews, who took the British Institute of Innkeeping’s Cellar Management qualification - the first time dray crews have ever been enrolled. Like our delivery teams, the on-trade sales team has the most contact with our customers and this training acknowledges the importance of their role in delivering our services and a great pint of Adnams cask beer.