What’s Your Story? is a monthly series in which we find and talk to interesting people in our local community, whether they run a business, have an interesting job or do something else that we think is worthy of wider attention.
Bison Beer is an independent Brighton based craft beer shop stocking a wide range of bottles, cans and home brew kits. We spoke to Jack Cregan, co-owner of Bison Beer, to find out more about him and the business.
HOW WAS BISON BEER STARTED?
Nick and I lived together at university and lived above an off-licence! Several years later we jacked in the day jobs and decided to open our own place, selling beer by the sea.
HOW HAS THE POPULARITY OF CRAFT BEER CHANGED THINGS IN RECENT YEARS?
Craft beer has made people sit up and take notice of what they’re chucking down their neck. Once you’ve tasted delicious, hand-made beer it’s hard to go back to the mass produced stuff. It’s also created its own kind of community – full of like-minded people that value quality over quantity. Beer is a hugely temperamental product and thanks to the brewers, suppliers and sellers, people can now gain access to fresh beer much more often.
WHAT MADE YOU CHOSE YOUR CURRENT LOCATION?
We opened on East Street because it’s perfect for people to grab a few beers and sit besides the seaside. It’s not a particularly residential area so we knew business would be quite seasonal – but we had a plan for that…
WHAT DIFFERENT TYPES OF CUSTOMERS DO YOU GET?
Mainly guys and girls between 30 and 40 years old. It’s surprised us to see so many females buying beer, but with the massive range of different ales it’s easy to see there’s something for everyone. We still do a fair amount of ‘Dad’ beers but it’s hard to convert seasoned drinkers from good old cask into the fresh stuff we love. We pride ourselves on being able to find a beer for everyone – be it vegan, gluten free, no alcoholic with inclusivity and accessibility of absolute paramount importance. We don’t take ourselves too seriously, it’s only beer at the end of the day!
WE LOVE ALL THE PACKAGING FOR YOUR BEERS, WHICH IS YOUR FAVOURITE?
Dan from See Creatures studios has done an excellent job creating our original labels in an industry that is full of awesome designers. The See Side label, which is a play on words to incorporate his studio name and our love of the beach, is hard to beat because it’s like looking at the best of Brighton on a can – Dan’s the man!
WHAT IS THE BEST ASPECT OF YOUR JOB?
The many, many beers! And collaborating with really nice humans of course…
It’s like being permanently on holiday.
WHAT ARE YOUR FUTURE PLANS FOR BISON BEER?
We’re opening in Hove actually. East Street is perfect for a pit stop en route to the beach but we’ve found a place on Church Road that we feel will be more convenient for residents. And this time they’ll be able to have a drink with us at the bar!