With greater choice and ever-increasing price competition, delivering the perfect pint has never been more important for modern hotels. Steve Lakin, National Customer Relationship Manager at Innserve, discusses how the latest technology can ensure guest satisfaction while boosting the bottom line.
Head For The Hotel Bar
Hoteliers have a complicated balancing act to perform – providing the best experience while protecting their bottom line. Unsurprisingly then, hotel bars, and the ways in which hoteliers ensure patrons spend more time there, are becoming increasingly creative.
However, as the quality of food, beverages, and the accompanying service has a huge impact on the success of their business, hotels can’t afford to provide a subpar experience. After all, there’s no quicker way to make patrons head for the exit than serving a mediocre beer past its best.
The More Things Change
While hoteliers and their staff are generally very skilled at welcoming guests, making sure their needs are met and that their stay is comfortable, other aspects, such as ensuring the beer tastes good, is often overlooked.
In many ways, the hospitality industry today is at the cutting edge and continuously improving. When it comes to cellar management, however, many hotels follow ineffective and outdated practices. What they don’t realise is that poor cellar management can affect the quality of beverages and, ultimately, trade.
In fact, cellar management is about far more than delivering the perfect pint; by employing the latest technology, it can deliver savings and reduce overheads without compromising on quality.
Quality is key to achieving hotel excellence; that includes the bar. Fortunately, technology is available to address most factors that can affect the quality of the pints being served.
Temperature control is the first crucial consideration. If a product is too warm, residual yeast can begin to ferment, quickly leading to fobbing, and in turn excess product waste. If a product is too cold, a chill haze or fob can develop, reducing the quality of the drink. What’s more, overcooling by just one degree can increase energy costs by up to 10%.
Ideally, cellars should be kept between 11 and 13°C. A simple way to ensure correct cellar temperatures are maintained is to install an efficient cellar cooling system. The most up-to- date cooling solutions, such as Innserve’s InnChill system, not only emit minimal noise and vibration, but come with an added environmental benefit, helping hotels to reduce their carbon footprint.
Keeping It Clean
Hygiene and cleanliness are of paramount importance in the hospitality industry. This extends to the beer lines themselves, as they need to be cleaned regularly in order to preserve quality. Beer served through unclean lines can be cloudy and flat, leaving a sour taste in any drinker’s mouth – literally and figuratively.
The process itself can be time consuming and costly, as beer must be extracted and poured away; therefore, some hotels choose to delay the process, which in turn allows standards to slip, putting guest satisfaction at risk.
However, advanced technology is available that can mitigate this risk by prolonging the interval between line cleans – from a week to between three to five weeks. In addition, this technology enables hoteliers to make substantial savings of up to £1,500 a year.
The benefits of using technology to ensure cellar management best practice are many: Improvements in drink quality, extensions in line cleaning intervals, reductions in wastage and, ultimately, boosts in bottom line profitability.
Of course, a proactive approach to cellar management and employing innovative technology also allows hoteliers and their staff to focus on what they do best – keeping guests satisfied – without running the risk of guests having a bad bar experience.
Innserve services more than 80,000 licensed and unlicensed premises across the UK.