Sydney’s ICC played host to the Fine Food and Commercial Drinks show this week, with exhibitors from across the globe showcasing goods, services, and products. The speakeasy stage by Winterhalter held informative seminars, tastings, classes, and discussions, from how to run a venue and train staff to the world of craft beer, with some of the industry’s finest joining the panels.
Of note was Mitch Wilson from Neat Spirits (most well known for his role with Plantation Rum) and the Sydney Academy of Bartenders hosting the seminar on venues with Mikey Enright, owner of the Barber Shop, Harriet Leigh, hospitality manager of Archie Rose, Jared Merlino, of Lobo Plantation and Kittyhawk and Toby Hilton, Group manager of Swillhouse Group. Each showcased how to set up a venue, train staff and run successful programs, with both Harriet and Jared both highlighting that hospitality is now viewed as a career and not simply something done while pursuing other qualifications or skills.
Beer and wine also took center stage, with seminars on the next wave of craft beer featuring Danielle Allen of Two Birds Brewing, Mick Cameron from Pirate Life, and Dave Phillips of the Institute of Beer hosted by Kirrily Waldhorn a.k.a. The Beer Diva. This was an informative session about the space craft beer plays in the market and how the industry has seen it grow along with consumer knowledge. Wild wines seminar and tasting also showcased different wild varietals, hosted by Dave Messum, founder of Just The Drop and Charlie Simpson, owner of Virtuous wines.
The event continues today and tomorrow, with our highlights at the Speakeasy Stage to check out including the beer and food matching, the World of Whisky with none other than the Whisky Ambassador James Buntin hosting alongside Matt Bailey from the Scotch Malt Whisky Society and Paul Slater of Starward Whisky. Thursday then sees the organic talks happen as well as an intriguing panel on the changing face of the great Aussie pub, PR and Marketing for your venue and rounded out, last but most certainly not least, with a seminar on staff training and retention.
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