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Ep. 54 with Doug Yaremko, Paddock Wood Brewery

By July 15, 2020June 2nd, 2023No Comments

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Mmmmm, a tall cold one on the patio. Now that’s a summer day in Saskatchewan.

Today’s guest is going to talk about the four simple ingredients that make Paddock Wood beer a fan favourite.

Paddock Wood is Saskatchewan’s first microbrewery and Canada’s indie beer. They pride themselves on a unique flavour and refreshing taste. Their pure brews can be found bottled and on-tap in some of the finest independent establishments and beer stores in Canada. You can also stop by the brewery to pick up your own case (or two).

They call Saskatchewan home and strive to support local music festivals, artist openings and anything “indie” because well, they hope you will support them.

Learn about Paddock Wood Brewery

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Barb McGrath 0:01
I’m a tall cold one on the patio. Now that’s a Saskatchewan summer day. Today’s guest is going to talk about the four simple ingredients that make paddock wood beer, a fan favorite paddock wood, it’s just got twins first microbrewery and Canada’s indie beer. they pride themselves on a unique flavor and a refreshing taste. Their pure brews can be found bottled and on tap in some of the finest independent establishments and beer stores across Canada. And you can stop by the brewery to pick up your own case, or two or more. They call scout twin home and they strive to support local music festivals, artist openings and anything indie because well, they hope you’ll support them too. So welcome, Doug. Doug is the general manager of the brewery. And he’s joining us today to talk about paddock wood brewery. Nice to have you here today. Mark.

Doug Yaremko 0:57
Thank you. So good to be here today.

Barb McGrath 1:00
Let’s, let’s talk a little bit about how a banker becomes a general manager in a brewery. How did that happen?

Doug Yaremko 1:08
Yeah, I didn’t see it coming either. And it actually does kind of make sense. But I was a banker for 30 years left banking a few years ago to do consulting work and in the business community. Those travels led to paddock wood, it’s kind of interesting how things do come to pass. We did a little bit of work with with paddock wood found the business extremely interesting.

And all of a sudden, yeah, very, very, very closely involved in the organization sort of become all consuming. From a from a manager perspective. Absolutely. And it’s, it’s more than myself, it’s a family thing, too.

Barb McGrath 1:48
And that’s what I was gonna say. So I understand that your kids are involved in the business to talk a little bit about that. And, you know, are they just the the beer testing arm? Or do they actually roll up their sleeves and get their hands dirty.

Doug Yaremko 2:02
So our beer consumption has definitely increased in the past few months, there’s no doubt about that.

Well, everybody on the air consumption has increased. Fair enough, all factors considered. But now we actually have a reason to to, you know, of course test our own as well as test others and try try the other flavors. Our son Jordan is involved in the business as well, he, he is a commerce student with a with a background in operations management, which fits very well with the brewery. Yeah, as well as, as well as the sales and the marketing piece of it, particularly the sales. So he’s very quickly become the face of adequate in in southern Saskatchewan within the retail and the on premise markets. And my daughter daylon, as well as involved, Dylan is a graduate with a fine arts degree from the University of Regina. So the graphic cards work social media, the management of production of posters and other associated artwork has become a very, very involved and important aspect of the business. And so she has taken lead.

Barb McGrath 3:09
You know, and of course, I know both of your kids, and it doesn’t surprise me in the least to see daylin excelling in that area. I’ve thought for years that she would do exceptionally well in marketing and design and in that whole space, and so to see her starting to gravitate to that, not a surprise in the least. And I’m thrilled for all of you. I think that’s fantastic how your family has just, you know, bound yet another past time to do together. Right. So dining is also a musician and his entire family is musical and they put on a concert. They used to do it at their house on their block and now they do it at a local establishment here in Regina. I assume that this year’s concert will take place in one of the establishments that carries paddock would

Doug Yaremko 3:59
Go up Creek side it does and I think unfortunately, we haven’t figured out how to host our our Summer Jam this year with COVID.

Yeah, not very much isn’t working.

Yeah, that very much as a worker. So it at this moment in time, it’s still on hold and whenever it becomes it will probably be more a fall activity. Yeah. Family is very important. And I tell you, if it weren’t for the kids having the interest that they have in the business, it would be more difficult to to be as involved in as engaged in it as I am I certainly has become a passion cake. It’s interestingly, the beer business. My degree is in my background is in marketing and my degrees in marketing and that had some application in the world of banking both in the operation of sure enterprises or businesses that that I had opportunities. To manage within the bank itself. And then also from the perspective of the businesses that you work with, and an understanding of how marketing and what marketing really is all about. But until you really get inside of a business, especially a beer business, yeah. A beer business and marketing and the to go absolutely hand in hand. It’s really it’s actually really amazing how all of that has come together.

Barb McGrath 5:23
Yes, absolutely. And that the beverage industry as a whole, I mean, that is a competitive marketplace, with the largest or at the highest of hierarchies, you’ve got some huge players. And then when I look at the number of micro breweries or local breweries that are springing up, you know, as a consumer, we’ve really gravitated back to, you know, what’s the local flavor? Right. So, so I’m a beer drinker, not a beer connoisseur. But what does indie mean? That’s something I’ve never understood. What does that mean?

Doug Yaremko 6:01
I mean, it’s a great question. You’re actually putting me on the spot with that, because that no, and that’s okay. And and so I know where you’ve pulled that from. And I’m assuming that that relates to the indie India Pale Ale aspect of this business, a pale ale being one of a multitude of types of beer. I, so I’m going to pass on that question. And I’m going to actually instead comment on the difference between being a beer drinker and a beer connoisseur. Hey, so you’re right there, there is definitely a difference between a beer drinker and a beer connoisseur. But what is a beer connoisseur. So really, I don’t know, a beer connoisseur, I guess is somebody who really understands beer

And understands that how you mix the the four basic ingredients. And what you do to those four basic ingredients can can result in very different experiences. And so it’s one thing to crack open a North American or domestic beer and drink a cold beer on your deck or on your patio on during the summertime. But it’s even more, it’s even more fun if you understand the the principles and the ideas in behind a specific beverage. Mm hmm. It’s fascinating. It’s absolutely fascinating the industry itself and what goes into it, what goes into the making of a beer and the different flavors that you can aspire to what people like what people don’t like, the craft beer industry is all about helping people learn more and understand beer, similar to what wine has done for Dec decades, if not centuries. Okay. And that is the space where beer is at a in North America in the craft industry.

Barb McGrath 7:56
So I’m knowing that there are some national and international brewers. Where do you find space in the market for a microbrewery? How do you guys make space for yourself?

Doug Yaremko 8:08
Yeah, no. And that that’s exactly that. That is the question. And that is the the niche that person is aspiring to. So it I think it has a lot to do with sophistication and consumer palate and desire. And it has a lot to do as well as with economic prosperity, the ability to afford, right. So people consume, because they want to or need to consume something so so food and so on, I was talking about hamburgers, actually, when when we talk about this, you’ve got you’ve got basically three choices for a burger, right? You can you can go buy $1 99 hamburger,

You can go and find a bit of a nicer hamburger for 499. And you can go and have a whole meal for 1299 at the end of the day. The the principle behind it the food aspect of the calorie intake, all you’re doing is you’re feeding yourself to sustain life. So the difference is experience. And we as a society, we’re at a point where experience is more or as important or more important than the actual consumption itself. Yes. So I say when in this industry, we are meeting the needs of consumers or customers who want to experience something more and learn more, learn more about an industry learn more about the beverages. And so there is a demand there’s a niche if you will, which is what craft brew is there is an industry for people who want to experience something different when it comes to to beer

Barb McGrath 9:54
Take and that makes very good sense.

Doug Yaremko 9:57
Yeah, and craft is craft is different. Then a domestically produced beer. There is one, we don’t talk about it very much. And we should talk about it. And that that is the fact that beer craft beers. And early, unpasteurized needs to be cold stored. So a need to keep you should keep your beer in a fridge you should keep it cold stored as you will, with with milk, it will it will last longer. But being unpasteurized. The process of pasteurization impacts the flavor of a beer. Okay, and you’re drinking a craft beer, you’re actually getting the full flavor of the beer that hasn’t been impeded in any way through pasteurization process.

Barb McGrath 10:38
Okay, see there. Now you’re getting into the technical detail. So you have learned a lot about this industry.

Doug Yaremko 10:43
Yeah. And you’d never think about it. Right? You know, think about it.

Barb McGrath 10:48
No, as a consumer I would, I would never think about something like that. Honestly, I think about Is it cold? Is it a Friday afternoon and I get to sit on the deck to drink it? Or am I you know, drinking it in a restaurant. And, you know, I tend to like the light beers and being gluten free. Now I have to find gluten free light beer, which when I first was diagnosed with celiac, oh my god, the gluten free beers that were out there were just horrid. Like, just horrid gross almost made me a wine drinker. Almost. Right. And so yeah, it’s a lie. I mean, for someone like me, the evolution of the micro brewing industry has been fantastic. Because there’s actually choices and options now. Yeah. So tell me a little bit about your your beer lineup. What does it look like? Who is and who’s your typical consumers? And everyone Tell me a little bit about it.

Doug Yaremko 11:48
Yeah, no. So typical consumer is is is not everyone. A typical consumer would be somebody who understands craft or has a distinct interest in the in the craft industry. And some craft consumers actually understand beer better, much better than than we do. A lot of our consumers, our beers tend to be very traditional European beers are styled off of European styles. And so international travelers who have traveled into into Europe into Germany and and England and so on, will have a familiarity with certain styles of beer. Okay, so we’ll be looking for for certain types of beer and we we tend to cater to to that aspect of the business. I, I have learned lots about beer, I certainly do not know at all, not at all, not even close. There’s about 110 different styles of beer in the world general general Lancer. Yeah, it’s it’s massive. It’s huge. We are producing approximately eight different styles. Here’s our class into either ale or lager. And that has to do with the fermentation process, a lager beer ferment for a longer period of times, that tends to be multitier. And it tends to be a much smoother drink. So that would be like a Pilsner. A Pilsner lager would be an example of that. And, you know, generally speaking, so beers are either classed as an ale or lager, and then they’re either a light, or there’ll be a medium or an amber or there’ll be a dark and then there’s the heavies, like the stouts, and so on. And the porters. So you know, again, all all different styles and paddock wood has has produced beers in in all of these different styles over the years. And yeah, it’s, it’s, that’s, I guess, that’s the other thing with craft craft is actually art in a way, right. And you Yeah, and and so you take a recipe, and it’s like a chocolate chip cookie in a way I talk about chocolate chip cookies, sometimes when I’m talking about beer in a chocolate chip cookie is a chocolate chip cookie, but you can use white chocolate, or you know, or you can use milk chocolate, or you can use a dark chocolate still chocolate chip cookie, right? And it’ll have a different flavor profile. And those I don’t like white chocolate chips. I prefer dark. And so you know, in a store, I’m gonna buy the dark chocolate chip cookies, not the white chocolate chip cookies, well, you might you prefer a lighter beer. I prefer a full flavor beer. And so those are all different palettes that you’re catering to. And as people with craft, I think that the big lesson with craft is it gives it gives individuals an opportunity to explore you can try one quite often on something whether it be an on premise or just by a single can and you know you either gonna like it, or you may hate it. Or you know, you say you know that that’s okay I better try it again just to see if it you If it’s me, yeah, you find the flavors in the favorites that you really enjoy.

Barb McGrath 15:06
Exactly that you’re drawn to. It’s so funny that you use chocolate chip cookies as the example because as we’ve been through COVID, both of my kids have really picked up baking like so many people. And when there was those flowers shortages, yeah, like we were one of the families ours operate through. Okay. Okay, it got to the point during COVID, that my 11 year old was cooking a batch of cookies every night. So they’re small batches. But, you know, yeah, like, he just, he found this one fairly simple, decently healthy recipe. And within, you know, a day or two had it down to a science, so he could do it himself. And so like, there’s nothing better as a mom putting your feet up and going, Oh, don’t forget to you know, do something with the mixer and then getting served hot cookies. Right, like, does it get any better as a parent? Well, and in fact, you know, then we do ask them to serve us beer, go get beer and yeah, yeah. Okay, so we’re in the industry going, Doug. We’ve, you know, 10 years ago, maybe 20 years ago, nobody even thought about microbreweries. Where is this going? Are you seeing your industry gaining a larger and larger market share? And, you know, are you envisioning sort of taking over Western Canada? Like, what’s your, what’s your vision here?

Doug Yaremko 16:30
I don’t I don’t think will take over Western Canada. I mean, you gotta, gotta gotta gotta think really, really big. Yeah, it’s, it’s a highly competitive industry.

Barb McGrath 16:41
It is. And it’s,

Doug Yaremko 16:42
It’s an industry where you have to be able to you have to be somewhat predictive to either identify trends and and pursue those trends or you need to be a trendsetter yourself. And we see a little bit of both in craft. Yeah, we have to respect the fact that craft doesn’t appeal to everybody. And the the larger market still prefers a North American domestic lager ale was golden in color. And and, you know, those are those are the the beer companies that are sponsoring the football teams and the baseball teams and everything like that, that’s not going to go away anytime soon. So, so I think I think what you’ll see I think what you’ll see with Kraft is I think you’ll continue to see a proliferation of micro breweries to create experiences, a lot of them will be tap host based. And so what that means is, their their distribution into retail stores, in cans and bottles will not be as important to them as it is maybe to other manufacturers. While while paddock wood bills itself as the first microbrewery in Saskatchewan, it’s really that that depends on how you define it. It’s the first microbrewery in Saskatchewan that actually took cans to to retail and okay needed available across a space wider than just the just the brewery itself. But there were breweries in restaurants prior to prior to adequate I lived in Swift. There was a little brewery in the basement of a restaurant in downtown swiftcurrent. Two or three years before paddock wood was actually something. And, and and so really, the

The district view is what’s more interesting, more interesting is the fact that craft is 20 years craft is 20 years here, but it’s probably more like 50 years plus in certain parts of the US.

Barb McGrath 18:45
Okay. Okay. And when you restart?


When did that when did paddock wood actually start? When when did the company start?

Doug Yaremko 18:56
Perfectly adequate? adequate was built in 1995 as a supplier of raw grains to home brewers that were brewing grain from scratch at home, which is basically where the craft beer industry built. Most craft brewers have started from somebody’s home, somebody’s basement making beer for themselves. And they say Damn, that’s good beer. And that’s exactly Steve cabanne was the the founder of adequate. That’s exactly how it started. And the story was, Steve, you make good beer. You’ve already got a store going to supply raw materials to the industry. What about, you know, what about beer and dine at me? he actually was instrumental in much of the way the craft industry looks like today in Saskatchewan.

Barb McGrath 19:49
Yeah. Wow. That’s actually that’s a very interesting story. Very interesting. No, did you know cool. Did you know Steve then when you started this work where it was just through As you say, some of the connections that you Yeah, yeah. Very cool. And Steve,

Doug Yaremko 20:04
Steve, Steve remains a little bit involved in the business today as as a resource for us on on Bruce, or if we’re running into challenges and so on. But otherwise, it’s largely retired from from the business of brewing.

Barb McGrath 20:21
Now he’s just the consumer.

Doug Yaremko 20:24
Now he’s a consumer idol. He might be doing a little bit of work still at home.

Barb McGrath 20:30
Back to the basement brewing, so I know. So you guys are primarily based in Saskatoon but do have distribution throughout the province. In Regina, I know if I go to some of the liquor stores, they actually have a tap and I can fill up my Growler. Are you guys on tap in many big liquor stores? Or somebody wanted to fill up a Growler? How would they go about doing that and testing some of the beers?

Doug Yaremko 20:53
Yeah, so growlers have been a little bit of a challenge here over the last little while, because of COVID. So most people shut down the Growler stations recently reopened about four weeks ago. Yeah, COVID COVID, has had a massive impact on the industry. And you when you talk about what it looks like in the future, actually, that that is that in itself is a big piece. So you have to appreciate that the on premise trade or the keg trade in this business is very important to the Brewers. And so when you when you go into the local restaurant, and you order order a beer, you order a local beer, and that’s coming from a local brewery have that business was shut down, and has been shut down. Since you know, early March, right. Just recently reopening this week. So we’ve got a few people going, we’ve got consumers going back onto decks and into stores and restaurants and taverns and ordering a cold one, that business will will come back. As far as the Growler fills, go, the Growler stations will slowly reopen, there’s a few retail locations that have some of the other tap houses, you can go in with your Growler and they will fill from their taps so that you can try not only their product, but other other Saskatchewan producers product from from their cap house. And yeah, I mean, that’s no, it’s it’s it’s the can business right now. Yeah.

Barb McGrath 22:19
You know, and I, I never even thought about that. I never even thought about that impact of COVID. I mean, there’s been sweeping impacts across the world. But something as simple as Yeah, can I fill up a Growler? I mean, you just you stop thinking about that stuff, right.

And everything from your Summer Jam to your beer supply has been impacted. Oh my goodness, yet, sometimes you kind of you start to forget almost right.

Doug Yaremko 22:47
And then the other thing that you see in a situation like this as you start to see supply chain challenges and how difficult it is to get stuff done on time. And and so you know, you’re in a whole new realm of the way the world works. And yeah, it’s been a it’s been an interesting experience. And I don’t think we’re done with COVID yet so I’m

Barb McGrath 23:10
I don’t think but

Doug Yaremko 23:13
But the potential of there being round two is is is there and it’s great that governments are stepping up and helping out the way they they have to and

Barb McGrath 23:23
I so dug Believe it or not, we’re just about at a time. So just before we wrap up, can I get you to share with everyone how they would learn more about the brewery the website where we would find you on social media?

Doug Yaremko 23:37
Yeah, absolutely. You’re you’re welcome to look for us look for us on Instagram at app adequate. And we are website BB you you were studying our old website. We will have a new website out soon.

Very soon. And yet look for us there.

Look, look look for information about the industry itself from the Canadian craft brewers Association website or the Saskatchewan craft brewers Association website. There’s there’s good information there. And I think the most important thing with craft beer is you know, talk talk to your server at a restaurant or a tavern to learn more about craft. Start if you’ve never had craft beer start start with you know what I would say is a calm or an easy to drink craft flavor. And build your way up or go into a retail store it tell you that the retailers in the larger stores they know product and also scattering product and learn about craft and yeah, enjoy a craft beer on a on a hot summer evening. Every day. Exactly. Your days. Yeah, hopefully. Perfect. Hopefully we have a few of them here soon again

Barb McGrath 24:49
Very soon. Exactly. All right. Well, thank you Doug for joining us today to talk a little bit about paddock wood brewing. It’s definitely been a learning experience for me and as I say I I definitely enjoy consuming, but I don’t always know what I’m consuming. So I found that particularly interesting and I think it’s something that you know as a consumer, the more you learn about what you’re eating and drinking, the more you enjoy it, not the less so. If you’d like to be a guest on the show, you can email me at BB at Google or just reach out on Facebook and Instagram at Above the Fold. ca. Just a reminder, you can even submit questions in advance of the live show on our Facebook page. I’m your host, Barb McGrath, local business owner and Google girl. Remember, you worked hard for your success. Don’t keep it a secret. Bye for now.


Barb McGrath’s been cracking the online code for nearly 20 years. She helps local businesses get to the top of Google with digital marketing training, web design, SEO, online reputation and advertising. Most importantly, she’s earned the trust of Google.Barb runs the only Google-approved agency designed to show you how to turn the online “stuff” into in-store buyers.If you depend on in-person customers, you need Barb’s step-by-step, online marketing plan to generate a steady stream of onsite buyers and make it rain money. She is the host of the Secret Life of Entrepreneurs, a local radio show and iTunes and Google Podcast.