Natasha’s MIA Beer Brunch at Varga Bar 7-29-2017
I first met Natasha at Yard’s Brewery, which I have written about previously. I had just rolled off the highway from my hometown of Portland, Maine, where, she excitedly told me, she has spent a lot of time working in her friend’s Portland area breweries and bars. We became acquaintances and I went to see her when she was behind the bar at Martha, in Kensington, and met up with her at events. She loves beer the way I love wine and has built her career around it, achieving her Level One Cicerone and hosting beer events for the Lagunitas brand.
I was super excited for her when I learned she is now a Distributor for Nevulis Beverages, an artisan craft beer company with 20 brands and 500-600 beers, a niche/boutique distributor catering to the smaller brands who don’t want to get lost in, or don’t produce enough for the large distributors.
When I asked to tell her story in my blog she invited me to a MIA beer brunch at Varga Bar. MIA is a distributor out of Miami and she was featuring their MIA White IPA, a tasty wheat beer that’s been generously hopped. Our buddy Frank would be behind the bar.
Natasha is one of only nine employees for the small batch distributor and her philosophy was built from behind the bar. The way it works is a buyer chooses the beers which go on tap, but Natasha knows that the staff are the ones who move it. If the staff isn’t knowledgeable and psyched about a new product, it will sit, not move. From her decade behind the bar she came to admire the distributors who got to know and appreciate the front of the house staff, not just the beer buyer, and took the time to educate and excite them about the beer being introduced. She wants to know what their clientele like to drink; with such a giant portfolio of beers to choose from, she can highlight one to three beers which complement the beers already being sold. She doesn’t need to dominate the taps; she’d rather have a presence in many bars around Philly where she has great working relationships developed from working together as staff.
I know Natasha is going to be a great success at her new job and I’m stoked to see what she will be introducing around Philly. For more info on Nevulis Beverages, use their link. To reach Natasha and inquire about her future events, here’s her email: