A message from Bill Coleman, President and Co-Owner of CAMERON’S Brewing!
What a year is has been! When I started this journey last October, I had high hopes for CAMERON’S and was extremely excited to take on the challenge. I viewed CAMERON’S Brewery as a ‘hidden gem.’ It had everything going for it: delicious, award winning, consistently high quality, passionate hard working employees, 14 years of pedigree…and yet the awareness of the brewery was incredibly low. Even in Oakville, many good friends of mine that are passionate about craft beer had not heard about CAMERON’S.
Don’t get me wrong, there are a lot of CAMERON’S connoisseurs and ambassadors who love our beer, driving lots of kilometers to buy directly from the brewery, and single handedly keeping our brands alive on tap at their favorite watering holes. Thanks to all of you! Your sincere love of our product has helped us…we just need more of you!
Over the last year, we have added quite a few converts. Our strategy has been to gain new fans, one at a time, one bar at a time, one event at a time, and by always leading with the quality and consistency of our beer. We have changed a few things to increase our growth rate, but they all come from the core of what we stand for.
1. Distribution– We actively worked at adding more bars, restaurants and LCBOs. We did this the hard way, by knocking on doors, sitting down and tasting beers with the chefs, owners and key customers (hard work for sure) and over-delivering on customer service.
2. Creativity– When I was conducting my due diligence at CAMERON’S, one of the biggest knocks was that lovers of craft beer could not get access to the creative new beers being created by our brew master Jason Britton, unless they came to Cask Nights. In 2011, we took Cask Night on the road! We sent out casks to craft beer bars and launched our first seasonals…the Oak Aged Series and Deviator Doppelbock. By popular demand, this summer we launched our first 473ml can. The Lager was a favorite of golfers, sailors, cottage goers, and has continued to sell well in the winter seasons!
3. Third Party Endorsement– CAMERON’S has been winning awards worldwide since 1997 and we continued the trend this year with a Gold for our Auburn and Silver for our Lager, at the Ontario Brewing awards. Furthermore we took home a Silver for our Oak Aged series at the Canadian Brewing awards. We were also honored by Beppi Crosariol from the Globe and Mail, who named our Lager as the second best BBQ pairing. He also followed up by giving our Oak Aged a glowing review; people are really starting to take notice! 680 News has covered us twice in James Monroe’s news segments and even the Toronto Star’s Josh Rubin recommended our Father’s Day celebration as a ‘must attend’ event.
4. Long Term View– CAMERON’S has always stood for brewing quality beer. We truly stand behind our tagline ‘Brewed by a Connoisseur, not an Accountant.’ Jason Britton sometimes comes to me with a seemingly outlandish bill for one of our key ingredients, and I always gladly pay it, if it makes our beer taste better. The Coleman family is equally committed to the long term view. In my daughter’s grade six year book, her career aspiration is to be co-CEO and President of the CAMERON’S brewing company with her younger brother Riley.
Thanks for all you support and passion!