Cellar to Glass: Cellar and Bar Online Course Launched

Cellar and bar training for the modern hospitality industry brought to you by CPL Learning

Today, CPL Learning launch an exciting new online learning programme – Cellar to Glass. Developed using the expertise of Beer Sommelier Annabel Smith, the Cellar to Glass e-learning course provides a comprehensive guide to implementing best practices in the cellar, behind the bar and ensuring that premises are in pristine condition.

The course is delivered in seven bitesize sections designed to provide learners with the freedom to explore the content in a way most suited to them. With practical video demonstrations of cellar and bar related tasks, this learning activity is an encyclopedia of cellar to glass practices.

In this blog, one of our CPL Learning content creators, Abbey Catherall, gives an insight into the development of this exciting new e-learning course.

Learners in mind

In October 2019, content creators at CPL Learning sat down with Beer Sommelier Annabel Smith to discuss the creation of a new e-learning activity focusing on the process of serving great beer, from cellar to glass.

If you’d have asked at the time what my perceptions of beer were, the old stereotypes would have sprung to mind. Beer is blokey. It’s inelegant, it’s drunk to excess, and it is somewhat unfeminine.

And I would not be alone in this perception. Research by Dea Latis found that when women were asked to think of a beer drinker “the image was far more likely to be male than female. Many of the women felt that the image of beer was… often associated with beer-swilling men in pubs”.

But certainly, it seems that although beer drinking may be perceived as a male activity – the act of pouring a pint is not. The Office for National Statistics reported that 56% of all people working in hospitality were women. The British Beer and Pub association also stated that over half of pub staff in the UK are female. This means that over half of those taking beer deliveries, working in cellars and pulling pints in the UK are women.

So, what did this mean for our learning activity? It was clear that we needed to break stereotypes about beer. We needed to create something that would appeal to all learners working in pubs, and the hospitality industry in general.  

Led by experts

To begin with, the content was put together by Annabel. She provided precise, step-by-step instructions on all aspects of cellar and beer care. This was the foundation of the learning – learners of varying abilities and experience should be able to follow these fundamental steps to gold standard cellar and bar practices.

The design of the course was one way in which we could really challenge the stereotypes of beer and pubs and create something much more inclusive. This didn’t mean something overtly feminine, it meant something neutral, clear, focused on the learning. CPL Learning graphic designer, Inga Sulikovska, created an industrial feel for the design of the course. This was paired with my own photography, with a focus on clear and functional images.

Video led learning

Including video was a must. The filming itself was taken care of by videographer Marilyn Katsvairo, who used a sleek and simple shooting style. It was crisp, clean and bright – a million miles away from the dark dank cellars of my imagination. We wanted these videos to act as guides, that could be easily followed and understood. Physical demonstration of cellar and bar related tasks (performed by Annabel) along with some on-screen text created an inclusive learning activity which encompassed different learning styles. This was all juxtaposed with some jaunty retro music to add an element of fun and interest to carry the learner through and voila, our e-Learn was born.

The course is aimed at everyone, from those just starting out managing a cellar, to those who need a quick refresher. It’s a video-based, modular course, that can be taken as a whole or broken into sections. It includes cellar management, cellar practices, bar practices, health and safety and the all-important perfect serve. The course acts as an encyclopedia of basic cellar to glass practices and will be essential learning for all pub and bar staff across the hospitality industry.

I am immensely proud of the end result. This is a beer course that just happens to be made by women, but it’s made for everyone.

Find out how to purchase the Cellar to Glass course here.

Remember to follow us on our social channels for updates about other new online courses and personal development resources.

Share this blog