Paramount Liquor is celebrating the success of its second Future Proof event, an evening of drinks, discussion and discovery hosted at The Lussh in Woolloongabba.

On Tuesday 8 August, more than 300 hospitality professionals from Brisbane, the Gold Coast and the Sunshine Coast attended the much-anticipated event to uncover industry knowledge and enjoy tastings from lead suppliers.

Throughout the evening, guests were invited to attend three panel discussions hosted by Sam Bygrave, Founder of Boothby Media. Tailored to the on-premise attendees, influential industry members explored the current state of the industry, the challenges it currently faces and what the future looks like.

The first panel, Future Proof Your Brand, invited Wade Tiller, Hard Fizz CEO, and Daisy Tulley, Mucho Group General Manager, to share insights into how they built their careers and brands. Tulley spoke of the importance of making noise through social media, being experimental with organic content and celebrating the talent in your venues and behind the scenes.

Wade Tiller, Daisy Tulley and Sam Bygrave

Tiller shared his experience building the Hard Fizz brand, and the significance of “owning your backyard”. “If you can’t win your own pocket with your brand, you have no right to win anyone else’s pocket. You need to start hyperlocal,” Tiller explained.

Later in the evening, Bygrave was joined by award-winning bartender Evan Stroeve for the second panel Future Proof our Industry. Exploring what practical sustainable action looks like in 2023, Stroeve spoke about sustainability and waste reduction in the bartending world, drawing on his experience at the world’s first no-waste bar Re.

Stroeve spoke about the value in taking a unique concept and pushing it to its limits. In an industry built on storytelling, Stroeve explained that your idea doesn’t need to appeal to everyone, but you do need to stay committed to your core values, thus adding a deeper philosophy to your approach.

The evening culminated with the third panel, Future Proof Brisbane, in which three of the city’s powerhouses joined Bygrave to discuss the opportunities for long and fulfilling careers within the hospitality industry.

Jamie Fleming from Alba Bar & Deli, Bonnie Shearston from the newly opened Ruby, My Dear and Andie Bulley from Savile Row and The 86 Club took to the stage to share their thoughts on Brisbane’s hospitality scene, speaking about the stigma placed on Brisbane’s bars and the work needed to remove that stigma.

“Your venue needs to be quintessentially, authentically you. You need to be your biggest supporter,” said Fleming, while Shearston spoke about the space for development and opportunity in Brisbane’s nightlife infrastructure.  

Closing the final panel of the evening, Fleming spoke about the need for more operator-owned small bars who aren’t afraid to do something different. Bulley shared her belief that more training and mentorship programmes are required in greater Brisbane for the younger communities of hospitality workers, with Shearston agreeing that governing bars need to provide more support.

Sam Bygrave, Bonnie Shearston, Jamie Fleming and Andie Bulley

Throughout the evening, guests used the Paramount Passport, a newly designed mobile based experience created by Paramount Liquor. Guests used their passports while exploring supplier stands and panel discussions to gain points and be in with the chance of winning a range of prizes. One lucky attendee walked away with a trip to Melbourne for two worth $3,000, including lush dinners at Bar Liberty and Gimlet along with drinks at Byrdi, Above Board and Caretakers Cottage.

Paramount’s Evolution Marketing partners showcased a range of beer, wine, spirits and mixers at the event, sharing samples of their products with attendees. Partnering brands included Accolade Wines, Bacardi Martini Australia, Brown-Forman, Craft Revolution, Carlton & United Breweries, CUB Premium Beverages, Diageo, Fever-Tree, Pernod Ricard, Moet Hennessy, Paramount Connect, Proof & Company, Proximo, Red Bull, Sam Smith & Sons, SouthTrade, Stone & Wood, Treasury Wine Estates and William Grant & Sons.

After a successful evening of learning, networking and tasting, details will soon follow for the next Future Proof event.

Leave a comment

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *