Indie Interview: Jack Etherington Head Of Beer at Pint Shop
Today we are chatting to Jack, Head of Beer at Pint Shop! We’re finding out about his role, how they curate the beer selection at Pint Shop and what’s hitting the taps this December!
Tell us a little bit about yourself and your role at Pint Shop.
My role at Pint Shop is ‘Head Of Beer’ although I do look after all the ‘wet’ side of the business (Gin, Whisky, Soft Drinks etc). I’ve worked in the on-trade for about 13 years now, working for a diverse range of people like Wetherspoons, Bloomsbury Lanes, University of London Union & The Hemingway ( A gastro pub in Hackney).
What makes the beer selection at Pint Shop so unique?
My philosophy when it comes to our beers at Pint Shop is that there is a beer for everyone. Plenty of people think that they ‘don’t like beer’, but we’ll give them a sample of a Berliner Weisse or Salted Caramel Chocolate Milk Stout and it’ll totally change their preconception of what a beer is or can be.
We also want to cater for the cask beer drinker, so will stock the old school bitter styles along with juicy IPA’s.
Which beers are you really excited about being stocked at Pint Shop Oxford in December?
I’m really looking forward to trying the Delirium Noel Christmas beer, their a Belgium brewery that having been making strong beers for years now, and this is their seasonal Christmas beer with candied orange and festive spices. We’ve also got a beer from De Molen which is a Imperial Banana Chocolate Porter which we’ll be serving on New Years Eve.
What is your favourite beer at Pint Shop, and what food from the dining menu would you pair with it?
Asking me to pick a favourite beer is like asking me what’s my favourite dog, I love them all! But if I had to I’d probably go with Marble Pint, possibly the finest example of a cask beer in the country, it’s light, golden and super refreshing. It’s a beer that will go well with pretty much any food, I’d go with the Lamb Kebab as it’s got a bit of a spicy kick to it, and Pint will cool you down.
Describe a typical day in the office.
A typical day in the office will be looking at suppliers list they send me and choosing what beers we have space for in our cellar, or contacting breweries about how and where we can get their beers from. I’ll also be looking out for new gins and soft drinks, there seems to be quite a lot hitting the market everyday and we have to decide which ones we think will cut the mustard on our lists.
I’ll also be arranging training sessions & material for our team, sometimes around beer styles or different botanicals.
Tell us about the collaboration brews you create with different breweries, how you choose the breweries to work with and what inspires the beers created.
We’ve now collab’d with De Molen twice, we’ve got a great relationship with those guys thanks to Ed Read from Bacchanalia (a beer distributor based in Cambridge). Our first with them was Hoog & Droog, or High & Dry, to celebrate the opening of Pint Shop Oxford which was a Hoppy Pale Ale, and have this year we brewed Us & Them, an Imperial Stout with figs, raisins, vanilla and orange! We’ve also brewed with Marble for our house lager, Appalachian Green, an Ekunaot single hopped Pilsner. Not forgetting our really good friends over at Nene Valley, who’ve brewed us Supersonic, a g&t inspired wheat beer, Pulping on your Stereo, an orange session IPA to celebrate Oxford’s first birthday and Have Your Cake & Drink It, a chocolate birthday cake oatmeal stout to celebrate Cambridge’s 4th birthday.
We like to work with breweries we know, like & get on really well with who are up for making something a bit different!
How does the indie Oxford community help you and your business?
We love being a part of the indie Oxford community, and proud to be an independent business in Oxford among so many other great ones. The independent community in Oxford is still very much emerging and growing, and Pint Shop want to be involved with that growth, supporting in any way we can, as it goes from strength to strength.
Finally, tell me about your perfect weekend!
My perfect weekend would probably start on a Saturday in Bermondsey to do the famous brewers mile, visiting The Kernel, Brew By Numbers, Fourpure and many more! I’d probably then go over to Victoria Park and go for a lovely walk with the wife and one of our foster dogs! Sunday would have to include a Roast Dinner at Hawksmoor.
Thank you so much to Jack for sharing an insight into life at Pint Shop! We’re looking forward to trying some festive beers in December!