Warwick’s got a new craft beer bar and shop – thanks to a family of local entrepreneurs.
The Craftsman in Smith Street has breathed new life into the venue that was formerly home to Revive then Switch.
It’s the brainchild of father and son Paul and Harvey Brown, supported by mum Jacqui and brother Regan, who have taken their first steps into hospitality with the project.
The Craftsman is apparently already proving popular with the craft beer community, offering an extensive beer menu, including 16 rotating beers on tap plus more than 50 product ranges in the bottle shop, with drinks available in third, half and two third pint servings.
They also offer 16-beer flights – one third pint measures from each of their pumps, from hoppy IPAs and pale ales to rich stouts, fruit sours and lagers. On top of this, they offer wines, spirits, liqueurs and ciders, plus the option of takeaways.
The bar marks a new direction for 20-year-old Harvey who had wanted to become a sports agent but had a change of heart and left university after his first semester to pursue a new dream, inspired by his father’s more than 30 years’ experience running small businesses.
Harvey said: “It all started with a mad conversation at Christmas about taking over my girlfriend’s dad’s beer shop in Warwick. He was looking to sell up, and I thought it offered me a great opportunity to get started in business. So I quit uni and became the proud co-owner of Warwick Real Ale with my dad.
“That was a blast for a few months, and I learned absolutely loads about beer and business, but we knew it would never make money, then the old Switch unit came available and we just went for it!
“It was a huge step up and has been a massive learning curve for me. I’m getting quite a decent knowledge of beer now just from listening to the craft beer community who know their stuff.”
The bar also offers food made with homemade ingredients and aimed at complementing the beers, and the team is keen to work with local producers from microbreweries through to coffee suppliers.
Harvey said people have been travelling to the venue thanks to its vast range of beers and he is keen to succeed given his father’s own success in business.
Dad Paul said: “We threw ourselves into this but we’re still ambitious and, longer term, we’d like to have a chain. This is Craftsman WRK and hopefully there’s going to be Craftsmans in other areas too.”
The Craftsman’s opening hours are:-
- 11am-9pm on Tuesdays
- 11am-10pm Wednesdays & Thursdays
- 11am-11pm Fridays and Saturdays
- 12-6pm on Sundays.