Bier Station is a combination beer tasting bar and bottle shop in Kansas City, MO. Opening in December 2012, it was the first of its kind in the area. Though common out here in the West, it took a change in law to allow a bar to sell draft beer and bottles to go.
According to Bier Station owner/operator John Couture, “Our concept draws upon European travel elements because I love the vibe of European bier cafes. We are known as beer enthusiasts, not snobs. Everyone from super beer geeks to craft newbies feels welcome at Bier Station. Many people bring their friends or family here to introduce them to craft beer because we take a very laid-back approach and try to be helpful, not judgmental. Our staff is very knowledgeable, but make it a fun, easy experience to dive into the beer world. Earlier this year, we were named by Draft Magazine as one of the 100 best beer bars in the country -- the only Kansas or Missouri business honored.” It’s certainly proven to be a popular concept, as evidenced by the almost 6000 (and counting) fans of their Facebook page.
Bier Station has 28 beers on tap and one beer engine. The only beer that is in permanent supply is KC’s own Boulevard Tank 7. The rest are in constant rotation. Says Couture, “It was a bit of a culture shock for distributors when they learned we wanted almost entirely rotating taps, but when they saw their brands selling well in rotation, they were fine with it.“
Keeping track of 28 rotating beers is no simple task, so when Couture saw the DigitalPour setup at Bailey’s Taproom, in Portland, he was intrigued. “I was wowed by the display and happened to run into Eric from Digital Pour there. After a brief discussion where I really got to understand all its potential, I was totally sold. And the service costs were much more reasonable than I expected.”
Bier Station installed the DigitalPour system a couple of months ago, and Couture has nothing but praise it, and its benefits.
“We use the real-time tap list updates on our LCD and on our web site, plus social media integration into the LCD so people can check in on Untappd or Foursquare and see their profiles pop up. Customers really enjoy that. Plus, the real-time keg level monitors are a fantastic, fun tool for people to see how much beer is left in each keg, which helps them decide what to order first. Customers also dig the automated Tweets when we tap a new keg. And because almost all the keg/beer info is culled by DigitalPour, and the kegs are easily accessed and updated in the system, it saves us a ton of staff time during keg switches. Before, we had to look up and input each keg's info during each switch, which was tedious and inefficient -- especially on a busy night when we may change 20 kegs.
We've only had DigitalPour live for a couple of months, but the overall response has been very positive. It adds so many new layers of info and customer engagement. I think it kind of raised the bar for beer displays in Kansas City when we integrated it. I know of at least one other area business who signed on to DigitalPour right after word got around that we were using it and people saw it in person.
I see people sometimes just staring at the screen, fascinated by all the data. Everything from brewery location, to ABV, to style, upcoming events, and upcoming kegs in our queue. So much great info. Of course, there are a few folks who think it's too much info to absorb, but most people say the more the merrier. DigitalPour is efficient and presents just a ton of information that beer fans love. It's a great way to help organize your keg systems and communicate that information with customers. The social media component alone is worth the cost."
Questions about DigitalPour? Interested in a demonstration? Call us at (503) 880-5510 to get started!