Apr 13 2012 by Stuart Wilson, Ayrshire Post (main ed)
THEY’RE top of the shops when it comes to the beer.
And Iain Mitchell should know a thing or two about the cold stuff – having sold it for 16 years.
Now the man behind Drongan’s Village Store is celebrating his first ever award from the trade.
Iain and his team topped the charts at this year’s Scottish Grocer Awards as they scooped the Cold Beer prize.
And the proud shop boss puts it down to the experience of the staff behind his counter.
Iain said: “It’s all about the correct merchandising and making sure that the right beers are displayed in the right places.
“It sounds simple but there’s actually a precise way these things should be done.
“I’ve got an experienced group of staff who’ve worked with me for many years and I think that played a big part in us winning the award.”
The Scottish Grocer Awards are organised by the country’s leading specialist food and drinks retailing magazine, Scottish Grocer.
And this year’s glittering awards ceremony was hosted by former X Factor and Comic Relief presenter Kate Thornton.
The black tie event was held in Glasgow’s Hilton Hotel, with Iain’s shop seeing off the challenge of stores from around Scotland.
Iain and his team were judged on range, presentation and staff knowledge of the lagers and beers being sold in their store.
Scottish Grocer managing editor, Patrick Duffy, said 2012 had proved one of the most interesting and inspiring years for the awards, which were launched 16 years ago.
He said: “We had some winners who have done well in previous years but we also had a number of winners and highly commended entrants who had entered for the first time this year.
“And judges also visited many shortlisted finalists who were new to the awards, in journeys that took them all round mainland Scotland and onto the islands.
“It’s a challenging time to be involved in local retailing but Scotland’s store owners and operators are responding with creativity and real entrepreneurship.”