Published on June 5, 2019 | by Alastair Gilmour0
Merchant of (ad)venture
Ross Quinn talks Trappist. He is also fluent in Lambic, Tegernsee, Augustiner and DIPA. Beer is his business, representing Cave Direct from its relatively new depot in Newcastle.
And this month he has cause for celebration – Cave Direct is 40 years old, being founded in 1979 in the days when an adventurous beer was Skol Lager (brewed in Scotland) and The Police topped the charts with Message In A Bottle (which, thinking about it, was quite prescient).
“A lot of people think of us as being new,” says Ross, “but at 40 years old, we’ve actually been going longer than any other craft beer wholesaler. The company developed into beer distribution through the original wine business by going round and picking up some great beer products, particularly from Belgium.
“Late last year we appeared in the top one thousand list of exciting new businesses on the London Stock Exchange, demonstrating how efficient we are. Currently our portfolio of core beers numbers around 350 and that can just about double once specials are factored in.”
Cave Direct operates from a warehouse in Hoult’s Yard, Newcastle, servicing the North East, Cumbria and Scotland, which supplements its national distribution from hubs in London, Maidstone, Manchester and Bristol being fed from continental Europe.
“We’ve been in Newcastle for just under two years now,” says Ross, who is Cave Direct’s Newcastle managing director. “The premises used to be Shindig nightclub so it has a license that will be useful for tastings and sampling sessions once we get our private taproom up and running. Anybody in the trade is welcome to come along and see what we’re about.”
Cave Direct keeps control over the beer brands it represents so the customer gets the best service possible. It isn’t a logistics company that simply drops beer off, but a merchant that can also offer technical services and training, plus helps customers run events.
Ross says: “As well as being the exclusive importer for many brands, such as Paulaner, Kona and Lervig, and have access to fresh beers most importers dream of, we also work with many of the exciting UK breweries, including Beavertown, Wild Beer and Tiny Rebel to name a few, so we know we have the best selection.”
Talk messages in bottles with Ross Quinn on 07881 100 041 (email firstname.lastname@example.org or visit cavedirect.com for further details).