Hiring! Tasting Room Team Member

Steel & Oak is looking for someone dynamic and friendly to join our tasting room family:

Duties will include but are not limited to:

  • Serving our guests with consideration, care and professionalism
  • Lifting packaged products and kegs
  • Pouring tasty S&O beers
  • General opening and closing procedures
  • Executing and maintaining our physical distance and sanitization plans
  • Bonus points if you’re a beer enthusiast!

This job is 3-5 shifts a week, evenings and weekends are mandatory. 

Steel & Oak is committed to being an inclusive space. All qualified applicants will receive equal consideration for employment without regard to race, colour, religion, gender, gender identity or expression, sexual orientation, national origin, genetics, disability or age. We encourage anyone interested and qualified to apply. 

Please send a cover letter and resume to tastingroom@steelandoak.ca with “Tasting Room Team” in the subject line.

Thank you!

Best,

-Jorden

Steel & Oak COVID-19 Safety Plan

We are committed to follow all the guidelines mandated by WorkSafeBC and the official Public Health Order. The plan includes our increased safety protocols and required usage of PPE.

https://www.healthlinkbc.ca/health-feature/coronavirus-disease-covid-19

https://www.who.int/health-topics/coronavirus

Our goal is to create a workplace that is aware and responsive to changing needs as a result of COVID-19. Our awareness and diligence will help reduce the risk of person-to-person transmission. 

  1. Reducing the number of people in the business at one time and creating more space between customers and staff.
  2. Adding physical barriers where it is difficult to maintain physical distancing. Providing PPE and training staff on proper usage.
  3. Establishing the new guidelines, rules and cleaning regiments and train staff accordingly.

     PHYSICAL DISTANCING

To reduce the risk of person to person transmission we will:

  • reduce the number of customers to maintain 6ft distancing at all times
  • provide sanitization stations for customers and staff to use before service and after using washroom
  • wear Personal Protective Equipment (mask, visor, gloves)
  • not hug, shake hands or any other physical contact
  • place markers on floor for safe distancing
  • post directions to inform customers of proper procedures
  • assign tables to customers and seat based on first come, first served
  • seat customers when all guests in the party have arrived
  • enforce all limitations in a respectful manner
  • Serve tables instead of bar self-service
  • have a dedicated service spot at every table
  • stand back at least 3 feet from table when speaking to guests
  • touch only the bottom third of the glass when serving
  • place drinks on dedicated service space at table and guests will reach for their drinks after server steps away.
  • have 2m distance markers for take home counter
  • have marker on floor for 1 person only to wait for washroom
  • keep doors and windows open when possible to allow fresh air into our space
  • clean and sanitize every table, seat and menu between guests

    CLEANING AND SANITIZING 

Routine cleaning and sanitizing will be integral to prevent further infections. To ensure our commitment to the safety of our staff and customers we are only using Health Canada approved chemicals for cleaning and sanitizing. Our glasswasher has been calibrated to dispense the required amount of chemicals to properly neutralize any potential viruses or bacteria. Our promise for continued safety is that we will:

  • sanitize credit/debit pin pads after each use
  • sanitize the fridge door handle after each use
  • sanitize POS system, tap handles, music equipment and common use items regularly and particularly when staff change positions
  • clean and sanitize each table, chair and menu after customer use
  • clean and sanitize washroom every 30 minutes
  • regularly sanitize common areas throughout the workday
  • thoroughly clean and sanitize every surface at the end of each day

STAFFING PROTOCOLS

We have educated all our staff on proper hygiene, sneeze and cough etiquette as well as knowing the signs and symptoms of Covid-19. To ensure staff is healthy and able to create a pleasant experience, they will:

  • stay home if they have experienced any symptoms of Covid-19 or signs of illness and self-isolate
  • inform us immediately and stay home if they have had close exposure to any person positively diagnosed with Covid-19
  • self-isolate after travelling
  • wash and sanitize after arriving to work, taking a break, using the washroom, handle garbage, touching personal phone, eat, smoke, cough, sneeze, blow nose or touching shared equipment or any surface that may be contaminated. Proper hand washing techniques are posted at each available sink.
  • avoid scratching or touching hair, eyes, nose, mouth and face with unwashed hands
  • wear required PPE and ensure that they will not touch face because of discomfort or heat and will keep their PPE clean and sanitized
  • not share any PPE items
  • take care if wearing gloves to not touch face with gloved hands, change them regularly, remove them carefully, dispose of them immediately and wash hands afterwards

To ensure our staff is healthy and happy, we will:

  • have regular conversations regarding health and safety with them to address all concerns so we can improve our Covid-19 response where needed
  • have resource information on Covid-19, bullying and mental health and wellness accessible
  • make sure all visitors for deliveries and service are recorded to assist with tracking in our delivery log
  • actively monitor our social media and guest feedback online and in person to ensure we are not experiencing any backlash or negative engagement with customers
  • manage any difficult situations that may arise accordingly and support the staff during this transition time

CUSTOMER PROTOCOLS

We are so pleased to have our guests join us again and have a few guidelines to make your visit pleasant and safe. To ensure your safety and physical distancing we ask that you are aware of these changes:

  • hand sanitizing stations have been provided on the patio, by the door, the washroom and the to go counter for you to sanitize upon entering and leaving the area
  • groups will be limited to a maximum of 6
  • a host/hostess will greet you and assign a table for your group
  • a server will come and take your order once you are settled
  • please stay seated unless you need to use the washroom
  • only one person may wait in the designated spot for washroom
  • customers required to wait must keep the appropriate 2m distancing
  • customers purchasing to go items will wait in a separate location to those waiting to be seated
  • to minimize contact we ask that you dispose of your own trash in the bins provided
  • one person in your group to be a health contact and register with first, last name and phone number
  • practice safe physical distancing at all times

We are confident that with all of us following these safety precautions, we will all be able to ensure a pleasant experience every visit. Thank you for being patient and considerate of our staff and other guests as we navigate these un-certain times together. We appreciate you and wish you the very best.

Steel & Oak Brewing Co.

Next Steps

At Steel & Oak, we’ve always been proud to be an open and inclusive company and space. A place that all people can be comfortable regardless of the colour of your skin. In taking some time to think since #blackouttuesday I’ve realized that we’ve become complacent. As soon as you think the problem doesn’t apply to you or your business because you’re “not a racist”, you’ve already lost the plot. We recognize this and will change.

This isn’t a short process. It’s a committed journey to education and taking actionable steps to ensure that Black Lives Matter and that our company and we as human beings never stop working towards the society we want to live in.

Steel & Oak Brewing Co. may have Company at the end of its name, but the reality is we are a small group of people who want to contribute and improve our community. We are making the commitment to do better and encourage our fellow members in the craft beer industry to do the same.

What good are words, or social media posts, without action? Action that we as a company and community advocates need to be held accountable to. We have started a company BIPOC Action Group. This group will put yearly and quarterly action items in place to ensure that our company is working towards constant learning and improvement and we will share those steps and action items with you here.

Here are our first steps:

  • Create an internal BIPOC Action Group to create yearly and quarterly goals each year that our company needs to achieve.
  • Review our hiring policies and procedures to ensure that they are inclusive and encourage BIPOC to apply.
  • Staff training on how to confront unconscious bias and how to be an active ally to all BIPOC.
  • Continue to donate to BIPOC organizations as we recognize that action and progress need financial support.
  • Commit to updating this page on what our next goals and action items are and keep you looped in so that you can feel confident you’re supporting a company that walks the walk.

This is just our first step. We understand it is our responsibility to do the work and continually educate ourselves and our team. We also welcome any information, dialogue or resources that you may feel are helpful to improving the lives and opportunities of Black, Indigenous and People of Colour. Thank you in advance.

Please continue to donate to and support your local charities, initiatives and businesses run by the BIPOC in your community to the best of your means.

Black Lives Matter. Let’s change.

-Jorden

Call For Artists Win 2019/Spr 2020

CALL FOR ARTISTS 

The community gallery at Steel & Oak is seeking works from emerging artists based on the lower mainland for the Winter 2019 / Spring 2020 terms. Artists are encouraged to submit an exhibition proposal.

Steel & Oak wishes to highlight how diverse our community is. In order to break down any exclusionary barriers and create a platform for marginalized voices, artists on the LGBTQA2S+ spectrum, non-binary artists, artists of colour, and artists with disabilities, are strongly encouraged to submit.

Submissions will be received up to 12:00pm (noon) on:
Friday August 16, 2019

Eligibility:

  • To apply to this Call for Artists you must be someone who creates art (including, but not limited to: painting, digitized art, visual poetry, mixed media, photography, drawing, printmaking, etc.)
  • Artists must be able to drop off artwork at the community gallery at Steel & Oak and arrange for works to be picked up following the completion of the exhibition.

Details:

  • The gallery at Steel & Oak does not charge exhibiting artists to display their works. We strongly encourage artists to provide their contact information for interested buyers. Steel & Oak will not deduct any percentage of the sales of artwork from the artist.
  • Unfortunately, due to the size and nature of our gallery space, we are unable to accept any sculptures or installation art. Please only submit 2D, and/or ready wall-mounted 3D works.

Application:

  • Attach to email images of your work titled in this format:
    LAST NAME – FIRST NAME – TITLE OF WORK – DATE (.jpg format- 300 dpi)
  • Proposals of exhibition must include whether the exhibition is solo, collaborative, or group. Any themes that the works explore must be included in the proposal. Proposals must indicate which term is preferred (Winter 2019 term is September 2019 – December 2019 and Spring 2020 term is January 2020 – April 2020). Exhibition proposals should be no more than 1 page in length.
  • Proposed artwork must include: title, material(s), dimensions, and date. Should the work be for sale, kindly provide price amount.
  • A short biography (100 words max)
  • An artist statement that provides an introduction to your practice and artworks submitted (250-300 words max)
  • A curriculum vitae (3 pages max)
  • Selected artists are responsible for delivery of their works to and from the gallery at Steel & Oak. Artists have two weeks following the completion of the exhibition to pick up art works.
  • Artwork must be ready to display (ready-mounted or framed)
  • Artwork must be available to be displayed for the duration of 3-4 months, depending on the proposed exhibition length.

Note: should the application process be a barrier to any artists wishing to submit, kindly reach out to the arts Programmer Heather Prost at art@steelandoak.ca

All submissions must be in pdf format and emailed to art@steelandoak.ca by August 16th, 2019 at noon. Artists will be notified no later than August 16th if their exhibition proposal has been successful.

Contact:

Should you have any questions regarding the gallery or your application, please direct them to the Arts Programmer, Heather Prost at art@steelandoak.ca

For more information about the community arts program at Steel & Oak you can see your blog post here.

SO5 – Steel & Oak’s Fifth Anniversary

Steel & Oak Fifth Anniversary

*This Blog Post will be updated leading up to SO5 on Sunday July 7th*

SO5 – Steel & Oak’s Fifth Anniversary Party

Here are the details on our upcoming party!

  • Date: Sunday, July 7th
  • Time: 1PM-6PM
  • Location: Behind the Brewery
  • Space: We’re taking over the entire parking lot this year and have occupancy for 1,000. Previous years we’ve only had occupancy for 500 so you should get in quick and without lining up.
  • Line Ups: There will be less of them. We’ll have more token stations, more pouring staff, and you can buy food direct from vendors instead of committing to it beforehand. This should alleviate the “great lineup situation of 2018”. We’re also open for an extra 2 hours so people will likely filter in throughout the day rather than the made rush of previous years.
  • Beer: We will have 3 Beer Stations:
    • Flagship Station: Simple Things Pilsner, Royal City Ale, Red Pilsner, Roselle Wheat Ale, Dark Lager
    • Limited Station: Vibrant Things Tropical Pale, Lumena Saison w/ Timut & Lemon zest, Marzen, Meantime India Pale Ale
    • Anniversary Station: Smoked Hefeweizen, 999 Brett Pilsner, Funf DIPA, Sapperton Sour Red Lager w/ raspberries.
  • Food: We will have 4 food options this year including; Big Day BBQ, Down Low Chicken Shack, Big Shucker Oysters, and Earnest Ice Cream. Both Big Day and Down Low will have vegan options as well.
  • Kids: There will be our famous S&O Lemonade for the kidlets as well as an improved kids area with less sketchy bouncing and more interactive fun.
  • Merch: Also new for this year, our Tasting Room will be delicensed and turned into a SO5 merch and bottle shop. We’ve got some new gear just for the anniversary and some cellared beers that will also be available for purchase.

Looking forward to seeing you on Sunday July 7th from 1-6 for an afternoon of beer, food, music and your neighbours all hanging out at Steel & Oak!

Cheers,

Jorden

Hideaway India Pale Ale

Hideaway India Pale Ale

Behind the Beer // Hideaway India Pale Ale

Our Head Brewer Eric has been messing around with yeast blends recently. An IPA we released in November called Homebody was fermented with one of these blends. We really liked how Homebody turned out as the yeast profile gave it an added layer of depth. However, one of the things we wanted to tweak for Hideaway was to turn down the banana notes that were in Homebody and turn up the dryness.
We like hazy IPAs just as much as the next person but we prefer them when they finish a little dry. Juicy up front, dry in the back, like a beer mullet of sorts. That is exactly what this latest IPA is! Brewed with Pilsner malt, rye, flaked oats and dry hopped with Vic Secret, Azacca, and Simcoe, Hideaway has tropical notes of pineapple, mango and tangerine with a hint of pine. It pours hazy and finishes dry and with a touch of spice.

Behind the Label // Hideaway India Pale Ale

Kevin gave Sami the design brief: “Thinking like a “Cabin in the woods” kinda vibe for this one. Something that makes you feel like you’re getting away from it all. Just chilling with a great beer and relaxing without a care in the world.”

Sami hit us back with: “The first two are more literal versions of a hideaway/cabin in the woods.  Option 1 the idea is that the words are almost hiding throughout the woods and option 2 is inspired by camping/outdoor badge shapes. Option 3 and 4 are more abstract takes on a hideaway.”

Hideaway designs

We felt that Option 1 was what we were looking for and rolled with it.

Hideaway India Pale Ale is available in the Tasting Room and shipping out to the Interior and Island, so keep an eye out homies.

-Jorden

Talanoa – S&O Women’s Charity Brew

Women's Brew

On February 3rd, the women of Steel & Oak brewed Talanoa, our second Women’s Charity Brew.

Talanoa is the Fijian word for sharing stories and ideas in order to nurture understanding and build relationships. Those experiencing mental health and wellness challenges often lose relationships, as well as the ability to share their stories without discrimination. In order to change the stigma around mental health, we need to start talking freely and without judgement. The women of Steel & Oak encourage you to share your mental health story.

Our launch event and fundraiser will be taking place on March 7th, at Sapperton District Taphouse from 6:00pm onwards. There will be a fantastic silent auction, raffle prizes, food and beer pairings, and even a Talanoa beer soap to purchase, made by our friends at Peregrine Supply Co.

Last year, the first annual Women’s Charity Brew and Fundraiser raised over $3,500 for our selected charity. This year, we are hoping to raise even more for our chosen non-profit organization: The Kettle Society.

The Kettle Society supports people living with mental illness to lead healthier lives by:
-Providing housing, employment, advocacy and support services
-Raising awareness of mental health issues and breaking down barriers
-Promoting the inclusion of people living with mental illness in all aspects of society

Designed and brewed by the women of Steel & Oak, Talanoa was conditioned on black currant puree and rosemary. Pouring a striking bright red colour from the black currants Talanoa has aromatic notes of fresh gooseberry, passionfruit, and floral qualities of carnations and roses. A sweet earthy taste with a hint of rosemary and pine, Talanoa was fermented with an American Ale yeast so it finishes clean and fruity.

650ml bottles of Talanoa will be available for purchase at the Steel and Oak tasting room and local liquor stores.

Partial proceeds from Talanoa beer sales will be donated to The Kettle Society as well as all proceeds raised during our silent auction, raffle and soap sale.

We hope to see you there!

Seasonal Appeal West Coast ESB

Seasonal Appeal

Behind the Beer // Seasonal Appeal

One of our favourite beers at S&O was our old flagship brew the Dry Hopped ESB. Like many ESBs before it, it suffered from being called an ESB (a style which not a lot of people know), and riding that hop-forward Ale category while being below the 5% threshold.
It has all the qualities of a beer we like. It was refreshing, it was hoppy, it was balanced, and it was lower ABV. People loved it, and it’s the beer we get asked about the most. But not enough people bought it over time to make it viable for us to keep it under the Flagship lineup.
We changed the name to West Coast ESB, then considered changing it again to a Pale Ale but thought that was disingenuous to the style that we were trying to achieve. Eventually we just decided to nix it all together and bring it back at a later date for those of you who missed it, us included.
That time is now.
We’re excited to announce that we are re-releasing ESB under a cheekier name, Seasonal Appeal.
It’s the same beer, now in canned format, and only for a limited amount of time.

Behind the Label // Seasonal Appeal

We wanted to keep the overall vibe of the Flagship ESB so that people would know it was a nod to the original beer but in a new format. Here is my design brief to Sami:
“So this beer is our original flagship S&O West Coast ESB. We stopped making it cause it didn’t sell well enough to warrant keeping it around all year. But it’s an awesome beer and one we get asked a lot about bringing back. So we’re going to in a limited fashion. Not sure if there is a way to play off of this being an original beer we’re bringing back or a way to tie it to our original ESB but just wanted to throw it out there.”
Sami got back to me with the following options and description.
“I tried to take inspiration from the original flagship packaging like you had mentioned. But interpreting it in a different way. Let me know what you think!”
Seasonal Appeal
We decided to go with something that felt like Option 3 but with ESB instead of S&O to make it more obvious. I feel like it’s pretty obvious now 🙂
We’re happy to have been able to bring back one of our favourites for you to enjoy again, but you know, seasonally.
Cheers,
Jorden

Interstate Love Song – Gigantic x S&O

Behind the Beer // Interstate Love Song

So how does a brewery from Portland and a brewery from New West get together to make beer? Well Interstate Love Song (like many collabs) started over beers. I first hung out with Gigantic co-owner and Head Brewer Ben Love at Farmhouse Fest 2018. What started out as a friendly couple beers ended with us eating DL Chicken Shack sandwiches and trying not to get the hiccups. From that point forward, a friendship was formed.

Our Head Brewer Eric went down to Portland for a thing and popped into Gigantic to chat with Ben. Ben thought it’d be cool and very BCish to brew something with oysters. Eric said “Oyster Pilsner!” (Eric wants to make everything into a Pilsner) Ben has a chocolate supplier that he loves called Woodblock and with the release being in winter it was agreed that a Chocolate Oyster Stout may be a safer way to go. Once back in BC we met with Scotty the Big Shucker who was fired up about the collab and recommended some oysters from Desolation Sound.

Interstate Love Song has 60lbs. of cocoa nibs in it. About one pound of chocolate per 50L of beer. 300 whole Desolation Sound oysters went into the boil to give ISL a bit of brininess and minerality. If you haven’t had an Oyster Stout before don’t be scared (unless you’re allergic), this beer doesn’t actually taste like shellfish. The flavour profile is more in line with salted chocolate.

It was rad having Ben and his wife Andrea up for the brew day and we would love any excuse to brew with Gigantic again!

Behind the Design // Interstate Love Song

Interstate Love Song was originally going to be called Contains Shellfish. Buuuut I got a little pushback so we thought ISL was a creative name playing off of the Interstate that joins us, Love being Ben’s last name and the fact that this beer is made with some aphrodisiacs and will be launched Valentines Day, and finally, it’s a sweet Stone Temple Pilots song!

Here is my full brief to our designer Sami:

“What I’d like to do is for all 650ml bottle designs (including bottle collabs now) stick with the diamond shape label. I feel that the consistency on the shelf looks good. However, much like the regular collab labels we were doing before I think the interior of the diamond can be anything. It doesn’t need to follow the regular format of all other diamond labels. So it can really be anything you want, inside of that diamond shape. Gigantic is from Portland and has a very comic book feel to all of their stuff.”

If you had a look at our designer Sami’s S&O Instagram takeover you’ll actually be able to watch her design one of the versions of this label. The options I was sent are below and here are Sami’s explanations for each.

“Option 1: Working with a retro comic book texture in the label to represent the Gigantic side of the design. I’ve kept it black and white to keep it feeling sort of grunge like the song.
Option 2: Sort of an abstract play of a highway going into the distance (also a play on the song)
Option 3: Probably the most conceptual of the 3 but creating an icon that feels like a music note/highway sign and when they come together they make a heart ;)”

 

ISL OptionsWe decided to go with Option 1 but threw some colour at it. I think Sami did a great job of still keeping the font based vibe we use for S&O while adding a bit of that comic book feel that Gigantic is known for.

We’re really excited about this beer and hope that you dig it too. Unless you’re allergic to shellfish, then don’t dig this beer at all please.

-Jorden

We’re Hiring: Brewer

Steel & Oak Brewing is looking for an experienced brewer to join our team!

Working under the Head Brewer, duties will include all aspects of production, starting from wort production to cellaring to packaging and everything in between. As a small team, everyone contributes across the board. Opportunities to grow with the company will be available.

A thorough understanding of the entire beer making process is essential. Previous brewery experience is a huge asset. You must have a passion for quality and a commitment to continuous improvement. You should have a penchant for cleanliness and detail-oriented work. If you’re handy and mechanically inclined so you can troubleshoot and fix things as necessary, all the better.

The brew crew works as a team but often you’ll be doing tasks on your own. Reliability and flexibility are key. The position will involve some early mornings, some late nights, and occasional weekend work. Many aspects of this job are also quite physical and will require, for example, lifting of 25kg grain bags and moving 65kg kegs. A valid driver’s license is an asset.

This will be a full time position with benefits.

If you think you’re a good fit for this position, fire off your resume as well as a bit about yourself and why you’d be the best person for this job to eric@steelandoak.ca. Please include “Brew Crew Application” in the subject line.