Episode 64 Vince Noyce and
Dich Oatley – British Rum

Craft beers and gins have come into their own in the last few years – alongside artisanal bakeries and independent coffee roasters.  So what’s going to be the next big thing amongst small, specialist food and drink businesses? 

If you listened to my podcast with Keterina Albanese at the Pub Show, it could be cider, English whisky or rum.  If it’s rum, then Giles Collighan, Vince Noyce and Dich Oatley will be leading the way. 

I caught up with Vince and Dich at the Portsmouth Distillery, where I discovered that the word ‘rum’ is really an umbrella term for a drink that comes in different guises, from the floral French ‘agricole’ which uses sugar cane juice to the molasses-based rum associated with the British Navy. 

Regular listeners will know that I love meeting people who do things properly.  Who really research and understand their craft and don’t take shortcuts.  This edition is yet another tale of dedication and patience, with Vince in particular devoting hours to researching different rums across the Caribbean, from the Dominican Republic in the North down to Trinidad in the South. It’s a tough gig, but someone’s got to do it… 

And now, they have to impatiently wait 3 years for some of their barrel aged rum to mature, hidden in a casement of a fort built in 1785, providing perfect temperature controlled ageing conditions.    

Episode 57 Keterina Albanese
The Pub Show 2020

Here’s a cheeky little bonus episode for you this week. The quintessential British pub is changing.  Is that good, bad, or just necessary?  Well, pause a minute and let’s imagine that you’re sitting in a pub, and on the drinks menu you find a delightful rose cider, served by the wine glass; a fine small batch English whisky, described as having notes of cherry; and an impressive selection of mocktails and botanical-based soft drinks and cordials.  

Then you notice that the pub isn’t just open at lunch time and in the evenings: it offers art and floristry classes in the afternoons and a mum and toddler’s coffee morning between 9 and 12 on weekdays.  

Maybe your local organises these sorts of things already.  If it does, it falls into what my guest today describes as the ‘hybrid pub’ category.  They include pubs which use their buildings in different ways or partner up with local breweries, distilleries and chefs, to offer their customers new drink and food experiences – from supper clubs to gin safaris.  

Keterina Albanese is the Content Director of The Pub Show, also known as ‘Pub 20’.  It opens its doors on the 4th and 5th February at Olympia in London, and as you’ll hear now, it’s the place to learn about the latest trends and be inspired on how to make a pub a success…

Episode 52 Cemal Ezel – Founder Change Please

Is it possible to change the world, simply by changing where you buy your coffee?

This was just one of many questions discussed at Alex Chisnall’s Entrepreneurs’ Summit in Bournemouth. It brought together a group of inspirational speakers, including Cemal Ezel, founder of the award-winning social enterprise, Change Please.

If you’ve not yet come across Change Please coffee, you soon will. It’s stocked in Sainsbury’s nationwide and it is Virgin Trains’ beverage of choice. If you live in London, Cambridge, Birmingham, Coventry, Manchester or Edinburgh, you might have spotted its distinctive grey carts with a bright yellow circle on the side.

What you might not know is that all the baristas at Change Please have experienced periods of homelessness – but with the right training and support, they’re able to make sleeping rough a thing of the past.

Perhaps the most inspirational aspect to Cemal’s work, is his conviction that businesses with a genuine social conscience will be leading the way, commercially and morally, over the next few years. It’s a point he makes powerfully, first in his presentation, and then in the conversation I had with him afterwards, on stage.

Episode 49 Rob Wilson
CEO Toast Ale – bread into beer!

Imagine buying a fresh loaf of bread, cutting it in two and immediately throwing half of it in the bin.  You eat what’s left and then you buy another loaf the next day and do exactly the same thing again.  

It sounds crazy, doesn’t it – and not something any of us would do deliberately.  But, across the world, that is what the human race is doing.  

OK, it’s not quite half. It’s actually 44%, which is still an eye-watering proportion.  44% of all the bread we produce is not eaten, at all.   

That is why Toast Ale was born. Set up in 2016, it sells delicious, award-winning beer using surplus bread and its open-source recipe has inspired brewers from South Africa and Iceland to Brazil and New York. Its BHAG – its Big Hairy Audacious Goal – is to convert the whole of the UK’s brewing industry to its way of thinking in the next 15 years. So, whenever we raise our glass, we’ll all be helping to save the planet.  

Rob Wilson is Toast Ale’s CEO. Before he joined the Toast team, he’d already got a serious track record in social entrepreneurship. This includes spending his ‘mega-moon-honey-moon’ in Africa, gathering stories about other inspirational entrepreneurs with his wife.   

Get ready for a life-enhancing conversation, which encourages us all to have fun as we help build a better future for planet earth.