June 28, 2021
Danielle Jenster, Customer Success Lead
Opening a bar in downtown LA during a pandemic presents unique operational challenges for a lean team like All Seasons Brewing Co, part of the Pouring with Heart Group, formerly known as 213 Hospitality.
The team behind the All Seasons Brewing Co. is a group of passionate brewers and bartenders, who in 2020 planned to convert a historic mid-century modern Firestone tire shop into a beautiful brewery and bar. The space is unique, full of history and with a lot of room for socializing in a relaxed setting. But when the COVID pandemic hit in 2020, they had to get creative. The goal was to open and offer a great atmosphere while keeping guests safe, while not compromising on service and guest experience.
All Seasons Brewing Co. turned to Kontactless to leverage QR code menus for mobile ordering and payment that didn’t require a lot of back and forth. By scanning a QR menu, guests can order and pay right from their table for a convenient guest experience.
That was the biggest thing. We met with a couple of different companies before, and so the fact that [Kontactless] does not require a lot to get an order in, and the fact that it’s all [web] and SMS based is cool. Also, once the order is submitted we know it’s been paid for, we don’t need to close it out, or add it to a tab. That was very convenient. -Chris Mehra, Assistant Manager
With only a small team of skilled brewers and bar managers at their disposal, the management team knew that staff efficiency would be key while they opened up to the public and grew the business as restrictions loosened.
We spoke with the General Manager Steven Zakarian about their experience of re-opening, and their choice to use Kontactless for mobile ordering for pick up at the bar:
We had zero margin for failure. To be able to lean on any system to alleviate labor dollars was absolutely key...We did a bar and pick up situation with Kontactless, and it worked because it saved that extra interaction to keep social distance. It cut half of the ordering time, allowing you to stay with your friends and family, instead of standing in line. It kept people safer and we were able to create a higher check out range with Kontactless.
With Kontactless menus, All Seasons Brewing Co. was able to add all their beers, drinks and modifiers, as well as merchandise and additional upsell drinks like shots, which has been a huge success.
I think people are loving spontaneous purchases in Kontactless. It’s a brand new revenue stream. A lot of items are ordered through Kontactless that most people would never even consider, like shots or merchandise. Having revenue driven modifications available at an easy click of your finger was definitely a plus, while keeping labor costs down.
Kontactless drives revenue which creates more space for labor dollars. - Chris Mehra, Assistant Manager
The guest experience in any bar is important, but especially when you operate a fast casual bar for ordering at the counter, you want to limit time waiting in line, but maximize revenue per order. For Steven, it’s been key to their operations:
Kontactless helped with the guest experience because we had a long line, all the time. We found a way to give people a tool to stay with their friends and family, get more drinks and have a better quality of their stay. Having revenue driven modifications available at an easy click of your finger was definitely a plus, while keeping labor costs down. It was this cool finesse that allowed us to create what we are pros at, while still using a modern approach but not taking that soul out of hospitality.
The guest experience stays in focus because this use of technology has helped their guests spend time socializing while staying updated on their order:
You can go back to having a drink with your friends and family, not standing in line. When the drink is ready, it alerts your phone and you can just pick it up. We still get a great connection with clients, we’ve connected in that sense. It hasn’t taken away the soul or connection you have with [guests].”
The notifications functionality of Kontactless is a big plus for All Seasons Brewing, because they can easily communicate with guests through the text message automation, when the server moves an order. Mehra says, “I like that you can control the pace, because we can tell clients when their order is ready after the ticket prints, and the fact that we can control the flow, even if it’s extremely busy.”
Opening during a pandemic presented obvious challenges, but the team at All Seasons Brewing found that QR technology for ordering and paying was a great addition to their service model, while they also offer service at the bar:
You’re getting a speed pass [for ordering], but you are not taking away time with your friends and family. This has been a big convenience for us..We like offering both options, either at the bar or from your phone. My team also loves it, as it’s easy to use.
All Seasons Brewing co. was set up and running within a week with custom designed QR codes that fit their branding, and a personal approach to onboarding the staff. Kontactless is a full-service set up, and once your agreement is signed, you will work closely with our Customer Success team to set up your menus and QR code displays. We also offer POS integrations, printer integrations or as a stand alone solution.
To learn more about how Kontactless can make a difference at your venue, contact us for a demo and our team will be in touch!