What better day than Australia Day to introduce you all to two guys living the ultimate Aussie Dream, creating their very own craft beer brand Quiet Deeds, “for those who prefer to toast rather than boast”. David Milstein and Patrick Ale (yes really, those are their names) have recently released the third beer in the Quiet Deeds range, the Kolsh. Crisp and refreshing, it’s the perfect Aussie Day beverage!
AF: I firstly have to say, your surnames? Really!? Patrick Ale and David Milstein, you were obviously both born to be in the beer industry. Honestly, did you just get into the industry because of your names? How did it all begin?
Dave: *Laughs* No not quite, it was more of an interesting industry and back in the early 2000’s while at Uni (studying Engineering and drinking too much at the local pubs of Melbourne Uni) we decided to venture into the Liquor Industry. We had 2 options, start/buy a venue or get into brewing/importing liquor industry. We choose the later and very glad we did! We did a lot of research on starting our own brewery back then but found it to not be a realistic or viable option at the time.
Pat: We then settled on the path of importing beer we loved from overseas that we thought would work in Australia. We learnt through the school of hard knocks, neither of us coming from a liquor background as such. Over the years we have refined many parts of our business from all the learning we’ve had over the years.
AF: You’ve had amazing success with Red Island importing the very popular Rekorderlig Cider’s to the Australian Market. In fact, my brother and his girlfriend have you guys to thank for many many hangovers and a few bright pink vomits! You’ve said that your own brewery was always the end dream though. Has it been a dream come true so far or just bloody hard work?
Pat: It’s been a bit of both, even back in the early 2000’s we had confidence that if we could find and successfully launch a brand into the Australian market it would do well. In Rekorderlig’s situation it was much more successful than what we’d originally anticipated.
Dave: In saying this we have been faced with as many challenges as our successes, initially financially (and ongoing) keeping up with the demand, a growing company with more and more people constantly coming on board and managing stock of huge volumes. In 2012/13 we had months where we had more than 150 container’s arriving in a 30 day period! This was intense and required far more sophisticated systems to be implemented. We adapted and had to learn very fast, this required huge amounts of work and effort.
Pat: In terms of the brewery, this was always close to our hearts and something we inspired to have and run. First thing about owning a brewery is you need a brand and volume running through it to make it viable, Quiet Deeds is our brand we plan on growing with our intent of building a brewery in 2015/16. We are very excited about this opportunity.
AF: You are one of only three brewers in Australia making a Kolsch beer. What made you want to bring this beer to the Australian market?
Dave: There were a few reasons, but the main one was a point of difference. Both Patrick and I had travelled to Koln in Germany (the heart of Kolsch and where it originates from) and thought the style would work in the Australia market. We set out to re-create a German style with an Australia twist to the palate and we’re very pleased with the taste/aroma and outcome of the beer!
AF: The name ‘Kolsch’ to me sounds quite heavy (I don’t even know why!) so I was surprised when I tried the beer to find it to be a refreshing and light beer. How would you describe the brew?
Dave: It’s a very refreshing clean beer with a crisp finish, it has great sessionability so one can drink many of them in one sitting.
Pat: It has mild bitterness and a medium body so it’s a lot more subtle, but very refreshing.
AF: Importing alcohol, brewing beer, it doesn’t really sound like much of a ‘job’ does it? What does an average day look like?
Dave: For me I am the director of Finances and Logistics, so my day is diverse and covers all matters relating to these areas. As we are still a smaller sized business Pat and I do overlap but that is more to keep up to date with what else is going on in the business. Exciting things are always coming up, new potential products, events to range our beers at and ways of educating people about the craft beer segment, all of these things play out in our business every week!
Pat: I am the Sales and Marketing director, so I work closely with my sales team to activate our brands in trade and support and grow value with our existing and potential new customers. I also work closely with our Marketing team to plan and execute trade and marketing initiatives across our portfolio of brands.
AF: Your own brews aside, what is the best beer you’ve had anywhere in the world? Set the scene for us….
Dave: I think this one is more about the experience and the location more so than the beer itself! I have fond memories of drinking beers in Brazil – Rio and Ipanema on the beaches in the sun. I also had great memories of enjoying a few cold Quilmes in Buenos Aries while watching some amazing tango dancers and fantastic craft beers in various parts of the USA. Now a days I prefer to settle for one of our Quiet Deeds on my balcony watching the sail boats in the bay race around.
Pat: Nothing like a beer whilst travelling on holiday or on a hot day. Stand out recent memory is having a Hoegaarden in Hoegaarden, Belgium in this dive little pub next door to the brewery. Strange town Hoegaarden, a tiny population with a huge famous brewery in the middle of it. It was a strange experience but the beer tasted awesome!