I am relaunching What’s The Idea? in Asheville, NC following 9 years in the NY metropolitan area. An exciting challenge.
Here, a sushi roll costs about the same. A pint of craft beer, the same-ish. The real estate market is hot and entrepreneurism high. For a brand consultant the winds are blowing in the right direction. But time will tell. I’ll need to understand the “care-abouts” so I can sell the “good-ats.” Then price effectively.
My tongue-in-check claim “I’ve been known to work for beer,” rings even truer here, as there are a number of craft beer start-ups. The reality of so many breweries down here can create a challenge. Can craft beer actually be considered a commodity? How does one differentiate one mountain brewery from another? Hmm.
The big guys Sierra Nevada and New Belgium have an almost theme park approach to building fealty. Challengers like Pisgah Brewery and Highland Brewery are doing smart grass roots efforts promoting on-prem and outdoor music – sometimes with big name acts like The John Butler Trio. Less loquacious brewers are using local food and pickers-on-stools.
And, of course, it’s all about the hero beer. The one unique brew that gains national attention. Google Peter Cotter and Mark Burford. I never made a penny off them, but did learn a shit ton from their journey.
Stay tuned. Going to be fun.