By Vanessa Cavasinni, editor Australian Hotelier
As revealed last week, Arthur Laundy has lodged a development application for a brewpub in Sydney’s north-west. Laundy has revealed that the project is in response to the growing price of beer to the consumer.
Laundy suggested that he wanted to bring craft beer to the Sydney’s west, after seeing how well it had done at The Quarryman’s Hotel in Pyrmont, which focuses on a craft beer offering. However he is concerned about how increasingly expensive beer is becoming for patrons.
“My biggest concern is the way the way CPI rises come in with government, the price of beer is getting so expensive,” stated Laundy.
He also suggested that while craft beer schooners selling for more than $7 was the norm in the city, it would be a tougher sell in the suburbs.
“I’ve always been a western suburbs publican, and in the areas I operate, like here in Bankstown, I understand it’s a 22 per cent unemployment [rate]. And my beers are cheap – I’m just putting them up now to $5.20 – you can’t buy beers around town for that.
“I try to keep them low because I know people out here are hurting. So for that reason I’ve thought I’m going to build a brewery, and what I’m after are a good couple of beers that I can regard as price-busters. So if I sell a normal beer for $5.20, I’d like to have beer that I can sell for $4.60-$4.70.”
Laundy suggests that the only way to sustain those low prices was to get into production itself.
“The only way we can still have a margin on sales and pay the wages, is to pay less for the product.”
Laundy is also looking forward to working with his first greenfields site – the first in his more than 50-year career in pubs.
“This pub I’m in now, The Twin Willows, was a greenfields site for my mum and my dad. They built this in 1964 and I remember how excited they were. And I feel quite the same.
“I’ve bought and sold almost 90 hotels in my life, but to build one like I want to build from a greenfields site – I’m 75 and feel like I’m 40.”