Meet our Merchants: waterintobeer
One of the reasons we're so excited about Packfleet is the opportunity to empower our independent merchants with world-class delivery options, so they can compete with (and beat!) the Amazons of the world. To that end, we'll be featuring a selection of our amazing merchants here on the blog over the coming months and we'd love you to send some of your custom their way!
As one of the few couriers who accept liquids, alcohol, and glass, we work with a variety of merchants shipping beer in and around London. So our first merchant spotlight is on waterintobeer, a wonderful homebrew and beer shop based in Brockley in South East London. We talked to Tim, the owner, to find out more.
What prompted you to start waterintobeer back in 2016?
I was about to be made redundant from my office job and was searching for something I actually enjoyed to do next. On a trip to America we visited a place in Olympia, WA which was a cross between a homebrew shop and a bar. I'd always struggled to find homebrew ingredients when I wanted to brew on a whim, as London didn't really have anywhere you could just pop along, pick stuff up and get advice. My mind started racing and so when we got back to London I decided to look into it and find a way of combining my hobbies of beer, brewing and hopefully music into one place.
You host a variety of gigs and events at the shop. How does waterintobeer fit into the local community in Brockley?
When we first opened I wanted to include my love of music into the shop, but didn't really know how I'd do that other than playing my vinyl records when people were drinking in the shop. The first gigs came about as we wanted to do something for our local festivals, The Telegraph Hill Festival and Brockley Max, and have organically grown from there. We asked some customers we knew played music if they wanted to do something and now have regular improv and acoustic nights which started from there. We also have a monthly homebrew club and regular quiz nights, comedy nights and board game nights that were started with our customers. We're pretty much open to anything, as long as it's from people who understand the shop.
A lot of what owning a shop like wib is about is engaging with and being part of the local community - though we get people visiting from all over the world as we're still pretty much London's only homebrew shop, it's the local community that keeps us open so I think it's part of our job to give a space for the local community to use it for what they love.
What do you like about using Packfleet for your London deliveries?
Using Packfleet for our deliveries in London has been really easy and has allowed us to expand on our local delivery service that we began during the first lockdown to all areas of London. As a small business it means we can compete with the bigger companies and offer an affordable, efficient delivery option, which has helped us to retain customers who live a bit further away from us and attract new ones.
What's next for you as we (hopefully) leave the spectre of lockdowns behind?
At the moment we're cautiously but optimistically rebooking our regular event nights back in, we've already had some great nights! Everything still feels a bit up in the air at the moment and there's definitely some hesitation from the public to get back to life as normal, but it's really great to have live music back, to chat to people face-to-face and enjoy being together again.
What's your favourite London brewed beer at the moment?
There's so many incredible breweries and beers in London at the moment, lots of great core beers and and one off specials. A few of my go tos are Drop Project's Shifty and The Kernel's Table Beer and I'm looking forward to getting stuck into Anspach & Hobday's stouts and porters now the evenings are drawing in.
Where can people find you if they want to get a taste of the waterintobeer magic?
We're a minute away from Brockley station in South East London, we're really easy to get to on the London Overground - and of course you can visit us online at waterintobeer.co.uk. Hopefully see you for a drink soon!